England has the potential to dominate world cricket, says Hoggard

Nagendra / 31 July 2016

Former English bowler Matthew Hoggard feels that the current England team under Alastair Cook has the potential to dominate world cricket in the years to come.

England have been a dominant force in test cricket as they have managed to beat the likes of India, Australia, South Africa, Sri Lanka and many other elite test playing countries over the past three to four years.

Hoggard, who was a lethal bowler for England during his time, reckons that current team has got the right balance and depth in the squad to dominate world cricket.

England who are currently fourth in test rankings behind Australia, India and Pakistan are expected to reach the top rank, expects Matthew Hoggard.

“England have flirted with periods of dominance before and have never quite achieved it,” Hoggard told Reuters in an interview.

“But at this moment in time, they’ve got the right balance to be the best in the world for a number of years. We are feared … and with the group of players we’ve got there’s no reason why we can’t be the best.”

“The reason England are so strong is the competition for places,” he said. “There are loads of wicket keepers in line to play and loads of middle-order batsmen.

“Sam Billings is getting lots of runs and look at Ben Duckett who scored 220 not out for the Lions in a 50-over game against Sri Lanka this week. He put on an unbeaten 367 for the second wicket with Daniel Bell-Drummond (171).

“In the bowling department we missed Ben Stokes and James Anderson in the first Test defeat against Pakistan at Lord’s this month but look how well Chris Woakes is playing for the team at the moment,” said the 39-year-old.

“There are a group of players behind the current crop who have got the shirts at the moment who could do at least as good a job and maybe an even better job. We’ve got so much strength in depth.”

England have bounced back in the ongoing series with Pakistan as they clinched the second test with ease after losing Lords test with 75 runs. Hoggard feels that the visitors would be “licking their wounds” after their defeat.

“Sport is funny. Look at Yasir Shah at Lord’s, he looked a world-beater, the best spinner in the world, Shane Warne-esque, and then he took one for 213 in the first innings at Old Trafford.

“That’s the great thing about sport, you never really know what’s going to happen next.

“They are two fantastic games coming up. Edgbaston is another wicket that will produce a result. It might turn a little bit but whoever plays the best cricket for four to five days will come out victorious.”