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Strauss vows to surprise opponents at World Cup

Last updated on: February 14, 2011 20:35 IST

'We played conservative cricket in 2007'

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Blaming his team of playing a conservative brand of cricket in the previous World Cup in West Indies, England skipper Andrew Strauss on Monday said that his side has learnt its lessons and would be looking to win the elusive trophy this time around.

"The whole campaign in the 2007 World Cup was a poor one. We didn't start well, we never got going and played a very conservative brand of cricket.

"I hope we've learned lessons from it and won't repeat the mistakes," Strauss insisted.

Strauss on Sunday blamed fatigue and injury for his side's recent 6-1 one-day series pasting by Australia and declared his team were still capable of winning their first 50-over World Cup.


Image: Andrew Strauss
Photographs: Reuters
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'We're here to win it'

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England's mood turned sour after their first successful Ashes test tour in Australia for 24 years in January when the hosts then trounced them at the shorter version of the game.

Strauss, newly arrived in Dhaka ahead of Saturday's World Cup opening in the sub-continent, told reporters that the series reverse at the end of a long and exhausting Ashes could be discounted as a guide to England's tournament hopes here.

"We're here to win it.

"A six-one defeat is not ideal but we contracted five or six injuries and had only two or three weeks' rest. Our condition will be different," he said.


Image: Andrew Strauss goes through the grind during a training session in Dhaka on Monday

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'We have guys who can play expansive, aggressive cricket'

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The English team will draw inspiration from the historic Twenty20 cricket World Cup triumph in West Indies last year -- the first ever ICC tournament won by the team -- under the leadership of Paul Collingwood, as they look to kick-start their campaign with a warm-up match against Canada on Wednesday.

"We're excited about it (World Cup) and I think the guys took a lot of confidence from the fact they won the World Twenty20 -- they know they can do it on the big stage," the captain said.

He, however, emphasised that English side would have to come good in the sub-continent conditions, something which the team has not been able to do in the recent past.

"We're going to have to play well in the sub-continent, but I think we have the raw materials, a lot of talent in our squad and guys who can play expansive cricket and aggressive cricket," Strauss said.


Image: England's Paul Collingwood (left) and Kevin Pietersen at a training session on Monday

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'There are not many expectations on our shoulders'

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Strauss picked India and Sri Lanka, rather than holders Australia, as England's biggest threats in the challenging conditions of stifling heat and generally lifeless pitches of the sub continent.

"There are not many expectations on our shoulders. India and Sri Lanka have much more on their home grounds," said the England skipper.

"But we have a solid squad, a settled side and our guys are confident after winning the Twenty20 (World) Championship."


Image: England's Stuart Broad, (left to right) Tim Bresnan, Paul Collingwood and Kevin Pietersen take part in a cricket training session on Monday

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'We hope to take some other sides by surprise'

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England's build up to the quadrennial event has been marred with the long list of injuries, which saw the middle-order batsman Eion Morgan being ruled out of the tournament, and pace duo of Tim Bresnan and Ajmal Shahzad still nursing their injuries, while fit-again Stuart Broad not having played since the second Ashes Test.

The captain, though, remained confident that come this World Cup his team will be able to surprise its opponents.

"We've got some pretty firm ideas about how we want to go about our cricket here and we hope we take some other sides by surprise by doing that," Strauss said.


Image: England's Tim Bresnan sweats it out during a practice session on Monday

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