‘England players need a mental break’

2015 World Cup

Former England all-rounder Paul Collingwood feels the doomed players should take a break from the game after their shock group-stage exit, saying the England lads will be hurting and in need of a recharge.

England failed to make it out of their group at the World Cup, and Collingwood knows that the pressure and criticism from fans and the media will be almost too much to take, and they need to find the passion again ahead of the visit to the West Indies in April.

Collingwood wrote: "They need to get away from the game, away from thinking cricket 24 hours a day and the anxiety of thinking about it all and really try to recharge as quickly as possible for a tour to the West Indies that everyone will have a close eye on after what’s happened over the last few weeks."

England only won two games out of six, against Scotland and Afghanistan, which were games they were assumed to win. Their other matches saw them lose quite heavily, starting with an 111-run loss to Australia on the opening day.

He added in his ICC column: "The frightening thing is that if they'd pushed teams close in the defeats, people would have accepted that, but there’s been such a huge gap between the best teams and England.

"They will need a mental break now. Although they've lost and everyone will want to see them working hard in the nets, these kind of results take a lot out of you emotionally.

"I've been in this situation and it’s really tough as a player. You feel as though the whole world is on top of you. You almost feel as if the extent of the inquest isn't deserved.

"But they will understand they haven't performed and I thought they had the most skilful squad that we've gone into a World Cup with."

England's last game saw them beat Afghanistan, a result that would have been catastrophic had it gone the other way. Collingwood felt its only use was seeing other players that had not featured earlier on.

He said of their final game win: "Can you take positives out of it? Probably not, but it’s a win and they brought in some new players.

"Looking to the future, there’s an indication of the philosophy with Alex Hales at the top of the order, they brought James Tredwell back in and he’s the best spinner they've got in the one-day game and Ravi Bopara was back as well.

"They've obviously got an eye on what’s ahead and the way they want to go but unfortunately it feels a bit too late now."