The Courier & Advertiser (Angus and Dundee)

Ramprakash calling on England to ‘finish the job’

Cricket: Batting coach’s rallying call ahead of final Sri Lanka Test

- Ross alexander

England will be out to rediscover a ruthless streak as they bid for a 3-0 whitewash of Sri Lanka at Lord’s.

Alastair Cook’s team appear to be on the up and have surged into a series-sealing lead with wide-margin wins at Headingley and Durham.

They have previous, though, over the past two years, of faltering late in series – and England’s coaching staff are warning they need to get out of that habit.

Last summer England lost the second and final Test of a high-octane, earlyseaso­n series to only draw against New Zealand – and then with the Ashes in the bag, they also came up short as Australia reduced their margin of defeat to 3-2 at The Oval.

Since then, it was a similar story in South Africa – where the series was again won by the time England lost by 280 runs at Centurion.

Batting coach Mark Ramprakash confirmed England do need to address the issue ahead of the third Test, which gets under way tomorrow.

“I think the players are very much aware of that,” he said.

“I’m sure it will be reiterated over the next couple of days.”

He anticipate­s, however, that the occasion of a Lord’s Test will help to make sure England are on their game from one to 11.

“A Test match at Lord’s is the pinnacle of your career, or certainly one of the highlights,” Ramprakash added.

“So all the players have plenty to play for individual­ly, and that will help collective­ly, as a team.

“I hope lessons will have been learned because this group of players have come unstuck in the last Test, most recently in South Africa. That wasn’t a good feeling, so we hope the guys will want to finish the job off this week.”

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