Another day, another World Cup defeat for England. This time it’s the Sri Lankan batsmen helping themselves to the generous offerings from England’s bowlers. This England team are approaching rock bottom.
The captain Eoin Morgan doesn’t have a problem fronting up and telling it like it is. But one person notable by his absence from the front-line is coach Peter Moores. It is Moores who bears the ultimate responsibility for England’s critical under-performance.
Peter Moores is clearly an effective coach. After all he was won county titles with two different counties. He is known for his planning and organisation skills. And when plotting a county championship campaign that’s probably a valuable skill-set. But what about when you come up against the best in international one day cricket? And the game happens to be evolving in front of your eyes.
Moores past success may well be his biggest weakness. He knows what works in the English county game. He probably puts a lot of trust in these strategic skills. His confidence becomes his players confidence. But what happens when a change of course is required. When you have to move away from what has worked so well in the past. How do you face that moment of truth?
You can dig in and resolutely refuse to change your ways, believing that all will come good. Despite the evidence to the contrary. Or you can be brave. And do what the best leaders do when faced with a change in dynamics?
They find that place deep within, that isn’t distracted by what others may say or think. That isn’t magnetized by the consequences of failure. That isn’t pre-occupied about getting it wrong. The leader adept in facing the unexpected, can draw on an unfettered instinctive feeling, that carries no historical baggage.
In order to overcome past England coaching failures, Moores is probably working harder than ever. Doing all he can to prove himself. But he is in danger of letting history repeat itself.
He may be best served by freeing himself up from slavery to past methods. And relaxing into a one day contemporary cricket leadership mindset. A mindset rich on boldness and daring. On setting players free to express themselves. A mindset absent of over-prepared caution. It may go against what he knows. But sleepwalking to failure is not an option!