Cross wants ‘ruthless’ streak as youthful England seek whitewash

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Cross wants ‘ruthless’ streak as youthful England seek whitewash

England are determined to continue their ruthless approach as their young players show what they are capable of on the big stage, says seamer Kate Cross.

The Women’s T20 World Cup is only five months away in Bangladesh – live on Sky Sports – and Jon Lewis’ side are proving to be strong favourites after a dominant 3-0 series win against Pakistan in the short format, and England currently lead 1-0 in the ODI series after the second match at Taunton was abandoned due to persistent rain.

Cross was recalled for the ODI leg of the tour and praised England’s emerging talent for leading the way with their performances, as the hosts look to wrap up another white-ball series win on Wednesday at Chelmsford, live on Sky Sports.

Wednesday 29th May 12:30pm

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Reflecting on England’s unconvincing 37-run ODI win against Pakistan in Derby, Cross said: “I don’t think we’ve lost an ODI series under Jon Lewis, I think we’ve only lost two games, so we’re doing a lot of really good things.

“But it’s how do we keep that mindset positive all the time? That’s something we’re disappointed with from Derby, that we could have been a little bit more ruthless in some of those moments.”

England have a busy summer schedule as they face New Zealand and Ireland in both formats before heading to Bangladesh for the World Cup.

But England’s youngsters thrive in these challenges and have consistently proven their talents on the big stage.

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Highlights of England’s victory over Pakistan in the first ODI at Derby.

England’s leg-spinner Sophie Ecclestone could equal the record of the fastest woman to 100 wickets in Chelmsford. She needs two wickets in her next match to level Australia great Cathryn Fitzpatrick who reached the milestone in 64 games.

Pace bowler Lauren Bell took five wickets during the T20 series and is determined to keep pushing England’s attack forward with a multi-format Ashes series on the horizon in 2025.

“We’ve got a lot of youngsters coming through now,” Cross said.

“I think the way Dani Gibson’s stepped up in that T20 series (against Pakistan), opening the bowling and playing the role of a number seven that we’d want is really impressive.

“She’s worked really hard on her all-round game. When you’ve got someone like Nat Sciver-Brunt as your blueprint to follow for the world’s best all-rounder, then it’s nice to have someone to role-model that.

“I think the way Lauren Bell has worked really hard on becoming a better bowler and trying to swing the ball both ways now, not just be an in-swinging bowler and reduce her predictability for power-play bowling and stuff.

Kate Cross celebrates England's victory over Pakistan in the first ODI in Derby with head coach Jon Lewis

Image: Kate Cross celebrates England’s victory over Pakistan in the first ODI in Derby with head coach Jon Lewis

“The way she’s gone out there and tried to do that in games is a really brave thing to do.

“Then we’ve got the likes of Bess Heath and Linsey Smith, who have had limited opportunities (over the) winter.

“But those people being around the squad just really excites me for what’s to come this winter.

“We’ve already spoken about the calendar being absolutely packed, but you are going to need to rely on those people at some point. So it’s a really exciting time for us as a group.”

England will tour South Africa in November after the T20 World Cup before they build towards the Ashes and the 50-over World Cup in India in 2025.

In 2023, England beat Australia in two white-ball series in the Ashes and will be looking to go one step further next year with a emerging team that embodies a ruthless attitude and aggressive mentality.

England vs Pakistan ODI series fixtures – live on Sky Sports

May 23: First Women’s One-Day International – England win by 37 runs
May 26: Second Women’s One-Day International – Match abandoned
May 29: Third Women’s One-Day International – Chelmsford, 1pm, live on Sky Sports Cricket

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