Ryan Sidebottom says England’s bowlers got their tactics wrong against Netherlands but expects them to bounce back against tournament favourites India.
England take on Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s men in Bangalore on Sunday in arguably the biggest match of the ICC World Cup to date.
Andrew Strauss’ team were unconvincing in seeing off ‘minnows’ Netherlands by six wickets in Nagpur after a sloppy fielding performance.
England’s bowling let them down let them down as Ryan ten Doeschate made a magnificent 119 and Netherlands were able to amass their highest score against a Test nation.
Time to adapt
Sidebottom criticised the tactics employed in the opening fixture, but believes the bowlers will be able to adapt quickly for the India clash.
He said: "England went a bit overboard with the short ball against Netherlands.
"When you play the ‘minnows,’ they don’t face pace every day of the week but maybe they overdid it. I didn’t see them bowl too many yorkers either, which the guys are good at.
"What I’ve seen so far from the bowling in the tournament is that you have to bowl dead straight and go for bowled and LBW if batsmen miss.
"But that was their plan and they stuck to it. Maybe they should have gone to plan B or C a bit quicker but that’s how it goes and they still won the game.
"Come the next game they’ll have worked out the area to bowl. India are probably the team to look at and England play them on Sunday so I think we’ll have a better idea by then."
Sidebottom played 25 One Day Internationals and 22 Tests for England in a career spanning just under ten years.
His finest hour came in the Caribbean in 2010 when he played in every game of England’s ICC World Twenty20 winning campaign.
The 33-year-old retired from international cricket later that year, but thinks his former teammates can add the World Cup to an already bulging trophy cabinet.
"There will be no stone unturned in preparation." Sidebottom said.
"It’s a World Cup and winning it would cap off a fantastic 18 months of absolute amazement where they have won every accolade going, including the Ashes.
"I think the good work has been done in the last two years. You look at the squad and you can look at any one of 20 or 25 players to do a job for England and that’s great.
"In the World T20 we just played great cricket and were just positive in everything we did.
"You have to beat the best sides in the world and we did that in the World T20. No one can take that away from us."
Sidebottom has left County Champions Nottinghamshire - who play MCC in the annual County Champions fixture which is taking place in Abu Dhabi in March - to return to his former side Yorkshire.
The left-arm seamer, a Wisden Cricketer of the Year in 2008, is looking forward to his new challenge but admitted feeling a pang of jealousy when watching the World Cup.
Sidebottom added: "I’d have liked to maybe stay on and play in this World Cup but I think it was the right time.
"Of course, there’s always that bit of jealousy and thinking 'I wish I was there' but I’ve had my time.
"I didn’t take the decision lightly and there are good young players coming through and it’s great to see.
"To come back to where it started for me and finish what has hopefully been a good career by helping Yorkshire to win things would be great."