Broad backs batsmen to deliver

  • Last Updated: September 26 2012, 19:47 BST

Stuart Broad is confident England will carry no mental scars into their ICC World Twenty20 Super Eight match against West Indies.

Stuart Broad: Backing his batsmen

The captain himself is sporting a cut in the middle of his forehead, after a swimming-pool collision with Tim Bresnan and the Yorkshireman's bulky watch at the team hotel.

But Broad is satisfied his will be the only wound, figurative or otherwise, worn by England on Thursday - despite their hapless performance against spin in Sunday's record 90-run defeat against India in Colombo.

He and his team-mates at least came through Wednesday's practice session safely, as they got their first glimpse of new surroundings at the Pallekele International Cricket Stadium.

It is there the champions will bid to get the defence of their title back on track, and erase unwanted memories of that unequal struggle against Harbhajan Singh three days ago.

West Indies have their own "trump card", when it comes to slow bowlers, captain Darren Sammy describing Harbhajan's fellow off-spinner Sunil Narine as such.

Broad, however, retains faith in his batting team-mates - who have been prescribed words of encouragement rather than a technical overhaul since their descent to 80 all out at the Premadasa Stadium. "It's all mental," he said.

"It is important to get back into the nets and start feeling like hitting the ball again.

"It is all a mental state of mind, getting back in a positive frame of mind and reminding (ourselves) that we are good players who have performed consistently.

"We have match-winners in our side, and it is certainly not one to worry or panic about."

Broad is consoled, as he was in the immediate aftermath of his team's weekend trouncing, that it came in a match of little consequence.

"If you are going to have a blip, do it in the game that doesn't matter.

"Going into this game there is no feeling of there being nothing on this one.

"Against India, as much as we tried to get away from it, there was the sense that - whatever the result - it didn't change what we did.

"It is important to get a good start in the Super Eights, because the games come thick and fast."

If England do respond with a winning performance, it may well be interpreted as a triumph of man-management from Broad and coach Andy Flower.

"We just talked about our strengths - learn from the mistakes you make, but don't dwell on them," added the captain.

"The India game was a big disappointment for us, and it was losing the early wickets that really did for us.

"It is important we 'reset' for this next match."

England retain eight of the squad who won this tournament in the Caribbean two years ago, and Broad takes comfort from the continuity - that he is surrounded by players who know what is required.

"It is something to remind us.

"Winning 'World Cups' is about winning the important games.

"There is no point playing like a dream all the way through to the semi-final and losing that one, so it is about developing momentum.

"We were happy with the start we made but disappointed with the other day.

"But if you break it down it doesn't really matter - it is all about now.

"It is about playing well in these three games and getting on a roll from here. We are ready for that."

England will respect but not fear West Indies, for whom destructive opener Chris Gayle is merely one of several obvious dangermen.

"We played against West Indies this summer and we know they are a dangerous side.

"They have had success in the Twenty20 format, and they have players who have done well in the IPL."

Not least among those is Narine, but Broad points out England have not suddenly discovered in one jolting experience against India that they will have to master spin - and bowl a fair bit of it themselves - here.

"Coming to Sri Lanka, we have not found out yesterday that people are going to bowl spin at us.

"We sort of knew that, because that is the conditions we will face.

"It is important as individuals we counteract that.

"It's looking like it might be an option to go with two spinners, like we did in the opening game."

Sammy is happy to portray Narine as a major cause of concern for England - and to hint ominously at his team's hitting potential on a relatively small playing area.

"England are the defending world champions. I don't think they will allow the last game India to play on their minds," he said.

"I think everyone who comes on to bowl has a big part to play, but Sunil is our trump card.

"He has done well for us, and we hope he'll have a big impact on the English batting line-up."

There is a theory that a well-struck ball flies further in the hill-country of Pallekele than by the sea - a suggestion which suits Sammy.

"Watching it on TV, it seems to travel ... I hope a few of the England bowlers will 'travel' as well," he said.

Meanwhile, Test skipper Alastair Cook also believes England can put their sorry performance against India behind them.

"The important thing is we're through the group, so there's a clean slate," said Cook. "They had a bad game but that can happen to anybody and I'm sure the lads will be working hard to put that right.

"You've got to have the balance of responsibility and skill to play a big shot - that's the skill in Twenty20, staying calm when a lot of things are happening very quickly.

"I've got no worries. There's a huge amount of talent in that side and Stuart and the lads will prove what good players they are."

Cook was unable to provide any developments in the Kevin Pietersen situation.

Pietersen, unavailable for the defence of the ICC World Twenty20 because of his differences with the England and Wales Cricket Board, is instead fulfilling a lucrative contract as television pundit for the tournament from a Colombo studio.

Cook added on Sky Sports News: "We know the qualities he brings as a batsman but clearly issues have to be resolved before he comes back in to the side. Hopefully they can (be)."

Teams for Thursday's ICC World Twenty20 Super Eight match between England and West Indies at Pallekele, starting at 3pm BST:

England (from): SCJ Broad (Captain), C Kieswetter (wkt), AD Hales, LJ Wright, EJG Morgan, JM Bairstow, JC Buttler, SR Patel, GP Swann, ST Finn, JW Dernbach, DR Briggs, TT Bresnan.

West Indies (from): DJG Sammy (Captain), CH Gayle, J Charles, DJ Bravo, MN Samuels, KA Pollard, AD Russell, D Ramdin (wkt), SP Narine, R Rampaul, FH Edwards, S Badree, DR Smith.

Umpires: S Davis (Aus) and A Rauf (Pak)

Third umpire: A Dar (Pak)

Match referee: J Srinath (Ind)