Mark Wood expects 'fire' from returning Tymal Mills, eager to forge Archer-like partnership with him

Mayank Kumar

Mayank Kumar

Author| Oct 16, 8:59 AM

Image: Twitter
Image: Twitter

England pacer Mark Wood is building high hopes on partnership with the left-arm seamer Tymal Mills, who is returning to the international stage in England colours after a long gap of four years.

Mills has been included in the England squad for the T20 World Cup and Wood expects him to bring some “fire” in order to not allow the skipper Eoin Morgan to miss Jofra Archer.

He is looking forward to forging a deadly combination with Mills, something on the line of what he developed with Archer when England had emerged as the champions of the ICC ODI World Cup in 2019.

"We're all competing for places here because there's only a certain amount of seamers that can play, but I don't feel like me and 'T' are in direct competition. We're all part of a squad here that's trying to win the World Cup, so we'll all be desperately trying to do that,” Wood said from Oman where England are staying before starting their campaign against the defending champions West Indies.

"It worked for me and Jofra, so me and T might have to keep it going," Wood said. "He's looked sharp in the nets, and to watch him, I certainly wouldn't want to face him. He's looking the business at the minute so hopefully, he can bring some fire and I'll have to up my game as well."

However, Wood was not ignorant of the challenges that England and the pace attack will be dealing with on different sets of grounds and pitches to be used in the tournament. He pointed out the different set of playing conditions at the grounds in the UAE and Oman and underlined the supporting role to the spinners he and his fellow pacers will have to fulfil in the tournament.

He also highlighted the amount of preparation and ideas his teammates would have had playing on similar pitches in the Indian Premier League which could be beneficial for their success in the tournament.

"(Conditions in UAE) put extra pressure on us to deliver, so we'll have to be up for the challenge," Wood said. "We do keep an eye on the pitches there, and it's not just the wickets, it's the dimensions - the field in Sharjah is quite small, Abu Dhabi is obviously wide. But it's good that we get a heads-up [through the IPL].

"My contribution might not just be in the wickets column. If it is a spinner's track, my role might be to keep it down as much as I can and then the spinners can attack from the other end. The thing you have to do is adapt within the game anyway."

Wood will have to step up with the pace and accuracy as England are without the star duo of Archer and Ben Stokes. They have a potent attack to challenge teams in the conditions of the UAE and Oman and most certainly, Wood will have to rise to the occasion with a big heart and consistent performances.

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