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Rediff.com  » Cricket » Eng have psychological advantage over Aus with T20 win: Warne

Eng have psychological advantage over Aus with T20 win: Warne

May 18, 2010 21:41 IST

Legendary spinner Shane Warne feels that England's win over Australia in Twenty20 World Cup final will mean nothing in the Ashes series later this year except for gaining a "small psychological advantage".

"Well played, big tick in the box, round one to England - but when it comes to the first day of the Ashes in Brisbane, winning the World Twenty20 will count for nothing, unless MBEs are being handed out," Warne said while congratulating England for the Twenty20 World Cup triumph.

"Every time Australia play England there is talk about the Ashes. We ask, has anyone gained an advantage? What we can say is that England's mindset has changed. In the past they thought that if they played at their best they might nick a win. Now they think 'We can beat this lot'. That feeling of being scared of playing Australia has disappeared," he wrote in his column for Daily Telegraph.

"England will have taken a small psychological advantage from Sunday's final. Australia were just starting to build a bit of momentum and find some consistency in the aftermath of losing last year's Ashes. But the first time they came up against England in a final they lost. That will send a message to Australia that they have to play very well to beat England now in any form of the game," he said.

Warne said Ashes in Australia would be an altogether different ball game than the Twenty20 but said England now have a balanced side to challenge Ricky Ponting's men, particularly with star batsman Kevin Pietersen and spinner Graeme Swann in prime form.

"It (Ashes) is the hardest series to win. They have now got the right tools to do that. England have a very balanced side and in Graeme Swann they have a spinner who, when you examine every format of the game, is the best in the world right now," Warne said.

"In Kevin Pietersen England also have, not the best, but the most destructive batsman. The Indian Premier League and World Twenty20 came at a good time for him. He was struggling in the Test arena. When he gets into trouble he gets technical and reads too much into things. He is best when he plays on instinct and in Twenty20 there is not much time to think. You just have to go out there and hit the ball.

"For the last couple of months he has not had to worry about technique and building innings. He has just had to smack the ball and impose himself. To be the Player of the Tournament will be great for his ego. It is also great for England because all the other players seem to walk a bit taller when KP is playing well. They feed off him. Also the opposition concentrate on getting KP out so much that it allows others to play with freedom," said Warne.

Warne still stands by his opinion that Paul Collingwood did not deserve the Member of British Empire honour but said he has improved a lot as a player and captain.

"I still stand by what I have said about him (Collingwood) in the past. He should hand back his MBE. He didn't earn it. No way. But he has improved as a player. He is now more daring and prepared not to be just a dour bits-and-pieces cricketer," he said.

"He also improved as a captain from the guy I saw at last year's World Twenty20. Being a good captain takes time. It's about experience and respect. When you first become captain you are trying to please everyone, learn as much as you can. You are so worried about everyone else that you forget your own game."

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