England test plans not rocket science says coach Silverwood

FILE PHOTO: Cricket - Second T20 International - England v Australia - Ageas Bowl, Southampton, Britain - September 6, 2020 England head coach Chris Silverwood during the warm up before the start of play Pool via REUTERS/Paul Childs

(Reuters) - England coach Chris Silverwood says the team must stick to implementing the basics well if they are to win a fifth away test in a row for the first time in more than a century and clinch a sweep of the series in Sri Lanka.

England completed a comprehensive seven-wicket win in the first test in Galle on Monday and finish the series at the same venue with the second fixture starting on Friday, before they head to India for four more matches.

Their win this week was the first time in 64 years that England had won four away tests in a row, but they have not claimed five on the trot since 1913.

"It's not rocket science," Silverwood told reporters on Tuesday when asked about England’s game-plan. "Just get big first innings runs to put the opposition under pressure and then skilful bowling.

"I think we’ve gone beyond 400 six times in our last 12 (first) innings. That shows we are building towards what we said we want to do.

"And with the ball, we have been relentless. Our areas have been good and we have variation in the attack. It’s about becoming good at doing the basics well and implementing the plans the way we said we would."

Silverwood has suggested England will rotate players for the second test, particularly in the seam department where the likes of James Anderson, Chris Woakes and firebrand fast bowler Olly Stone await their turn.

"We train again tomorrow (Wednesday) so we will see how everybody has pulled up. But with a lot of tests in India, it is highly likely there will be rest and rotation in the seam attack.

"But we will put a strong, balanced attack out there to make sure we win the test."

(Reporting by Nick Said; Editing by Ken Ferris)

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