Broad backs Cook to find form

  • Last Updated: July 7 2014, 15:26 BST

Stuart Broad has backed Alastair Cook to find his form again as the team prepare for the first Test against India at Trent Bridge.

Stuart Broad: Support for Cook
Stuart Broad: Support for Cook

The England captain's best score in the recent series loss to Sri Lanka was 28, extending his run without a Test hundred to almost 14 months.

The Essex man's captaincy has also come under scrutiny with the likes of Shane Warne, Geoffrey Boycott and Kevin Pietersen all criticising the 29-year-old in the wake of a recent run of poor results.

But it is his form with the bat that will draw the most focus in Nottingham, although paceman Broad insists the recent lean run is just part of the game.

"He's obviously worked hard in the nets as Cooky does, he's always first in and last out," Broad told Sky Sports News.

"He likes to hit a lot of balls pre-series and that's no different this week.

"He just needs that change of luck, all cricketers go through it from time to time and it's Cooky's turn.

"We know he's world class, we know he's played over 100 Test matches with the record he's got and there's no doubt that will change for him."

The series defeat to Sri Lanka was the first time England had lost to the tourists on home soil, but Broad insists confidence in the camp is high as they prepare to take on an India team they beat 4-0 in 2011.

"We lost the series against Sri Lanka but we played a lot of good cricket in that series," he said.

"We did some brilliant stuff with some debut hundreds and that sort of thing.

"The confidence is good coming into this series.

"Obviously, the last time India were here it was probably the best series we have played for years, but a lot of that team has changed.

"Some players can take some confidence from that but the majority of players have changed from that series so this is a completely fresh series. We've got to restart and go again."

National selector James Whitaker has suggested that Broad and fellow quicks James Anderson, Ben Stokes, Liam Plunkett, Chris Jordan and Chris Woakes could all see Test action in a packed summer schedule.

The need for a large pack of pace bowlers is emphasised by England's lack of a front-line spinner, but Broad is confident Peter Moores' men will cope.

"We've got 42 days, 25 Test match days, 10 training days, five travel days - (that) only leaves two days without cricket duty," he said.

"A lot depends on how we bowl. If India are getting four or five hundred every innings then the bowlers might have to take a break from time to time.

"But if we're bowling really well and we're only fielding for 80-90 overs an innings, that obviously makes a huge difference on the workload.

"The important thing will be to keep the bowlers as fresh as we can."

He added: "There's a lot of successful Test sides play with a specialist spinner - we've seen that, obviously, with Graeme Swann in the past few years with this England side.

"But South Africa have done it very successfully with a spin bowler that holds an end up.

"It's not a major concern in the near future and it's something the seamers just need to get used to - a bit of extra bowling workload, bowling a bit more when the ball is not doing a huge amount.

"But we're all experienced enough to be able to do that and change our game plans."

Broad also said the controversy involving Andrew Strauss and Kevin Pietersen was "not relevant" to the team when he was quizzed over Saturday's incident which saw former captain Strauss describe his one-time team-mates "an absolute c**t" when he thought he was off-mic during television commentary.

"Two ex-England cricketers having a bit of an issue is not something that is relevant to the England changing room," said Broad, as he played a straight bat to questions.

"They live pretty near to each other," Broad added on BBC Radio 5 Live.

"I'm sure Straussy will have KP round for a glass of white or red and discuss what's happened."