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  • Nasima Akter

England Reveals Plans for Pre-Ashes Bonding Trip

England Reveals Plans for Pre-Ashes Bonding Trip JW7Today
England Reveals Plans for Pre-Ashes Bonding Trip

England’s cricketers are set to head off on a pre-Ashes bonding trip in June, in a bid to prepare for their much-anticipated series against Australia. With the success of their previous four-day camp at the luxury Millbrook Resort, coach Brendon McCullum is keen to take the team away again before the Ashes.

McCullum spoke of the success of the team’s trip to Queenstown in February, saying, “We were able to be away from everyone and spend a lot of team time together. With shared formats, it’s really important that you take some time to anchor those relationships and get the banter going again.”

The location of the trip has yet to be decided, but it is thought that a golf resort in either Scotland or Spain is likely to be the destination. The majority of the team members are avid golfers, so the choice of venue should be straightforward.

Details Confirmed for the Trip

The trip is expected to take place between the scheduled end of England’s one-off Test against Ireland at Lord’s on June 4 and the start of the Ashes at Edgbaston on June 16th. A three or four-day trip will be the ideal opportunity for the team to spend time together and bond as they prepare for the high-pressure Ashes series.

The benefits of such a trip are clear, with McCullum acknowledging the value of the previous camp in Queenstown earlier this year, stating: “We were able to be away from everyone and spend a lot of team time together. With split formats it’s really important you give yourself some time to embed those relationships and get that banter going again.”

Among those who will benefit from the trip are Jonny Bairstow and Jofra Archer, who have both been out of the Test set-up for lengthy periods due to serious injuries.

Past Training Camps

Pre-Ashes training camps are not new to the England cricket team, and they have had both successful and not-so-successful trips in the past. Ahead of the 2009 Ashes home series, England visited the battlefields of World War I in Flanders.

In 2010/11, it was boot camp in Bavaria, where James Anderson broke a rib during a boxing match with Chris Tremlett. In 2013-14, England had another bonding trip before heading Down Under, this time in Staffordshire, where they were tasked with hunting down would-be fugitives during a bizarre role-playing game. Unfortunately, England lost the Ashes 0-5.

The hope is that this year’s trip will be more like the 2015 Desert Springs resort camp in Spain, where the team enjoyed light exercise, golf, mountain biking, and quizzes, leading to a successful 3-2 series win.

Ideally, the team would have preferred to take the trip before the Ireland Test in June, but with many players returning from the Indian Premier League at the end of May, that wasn't feasible.

The trip is expected to be a far more relaxed affair than previous incarnations, and the team is hoping to create a positive atmosphere ahead of the series.

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