Ian Bell: I'm ready to be England captain, one day

Click to follow
The Independent Online

You could have knocked me down with a feather when Peter Moores mentioned my name as a possible England captain. It's not something I have given a great deal of thought to because I have been too busy trying to cement my place in the team.

However, down the line, I suppose it's something that has occurred to me. I like to think I am a reasonable thinker about the game, and in the last few months I feel I have developed as a cricketer and as a person.

It's also true that these days I am one of the more experienced players around. So in team meetings I try to contribute, and on the field as well I will have a word with the captain if I think something needs to be done. In one-day cricket things are always going off, and it can be hard for the captain to see everything.

But me doing the job? That's for another day. I can tell you that Colly [Paul Collingwood] has fitted into the role brilliantly. He brings to the one-day team a freshness and a vision which has really benefited them. The way he bats and fields himself helps, but he wants us to express ourselves as well and tells us that.

He wants us to give it a go, to get back up if things go wrong. We did that in Sri Lanka when we lost the first game, and a lot of that was down to Colly.

The split captaincy is a subject that's often talked about, but I think our ad hoc arrangement is working. We know we're here to play one-day cricket andthat's what we concentrate on. With Michael Vaughan as Test captain it all gels. It also helps when you have definitively split series – we had India in seven one-dayers at the end of the summer and a self-contained one-day series in Sri Lanka. Here, too, we can concentrate firmly on the short form before the Tests.

It was nice to get runs in the warm-up game yesterday (Bell made 79 from 89 balls in the victory over Canterbury). I felt as though I was hitting the ball well, and it was nice to adjust to the pitches over here, which are much more like home, certainlyin comparison with Sri Lanka.

But before the one-dayers, it's the Twenty20. I've only played two of England's games and they're the only two Twenty20s I have played in the last two years, so I don't know if I'll feature in the two games this week.

But I do know that it's about hitting the gaps and rotating the strike and not just swinging from the hip. Do well this week and it will help to set up the whole tour.

Comments