London [UK], September 15 (ANI): England batter Chris Woakes has responded over the fitness concerns of England's key players Adil Rashid and Mark Wood ahead of fourth ODI on Friday.
England team are positive about the fitness of both players despite their lack of match practice. Rashid has played a match in the first three ODIs against New Zealand while Mark has not yet played any match recently.
Asked about Mark's possibility of playing the fourth and the last ODI match against New Zealand on Friday, Woakes said a player with Mark's experience can go straight in.
"He's not the sort of guy who needs a load of game time. He's a big asset for us going into the World Cup," Woakes said after England's victory in the third ODI.
"You don't want to risk him too soon. Bruised heels, I remember having mine: you think it's going to be a week or two and in the end they end up being quite long injuries that can always reoccur."In the opening ODI of the series against Kiwis in Cardiff, Rashid took a wicket with his first ball, knocking Will Young's off stump back with the outside edge of the ball. However, Rashid had to later leave the pitch due to cramps. He came back to bowl five more overs, but since then he has not been featured in the team.
Mark has not played any match since the fifth Ashes Test at the end of July. He had a sore heel at the end of the Ashes 2023.
"Myself, I like games under my belt to build up confidence and get up to speed. Actually, Mark is one of the guys I'm very envious of, because he can steam in and bowl at 93mph (150kph) as we saw in the Ashes...hopefully he plays the last one [at Lord's on Friday]," Woakes said. Woakes had taken 3 wickets for 31 in the third ODI at The Oval.
"It was nice to bowl an eight-over spell and pick up some important wickets. You want to keep putting in performances like that to keep getting the nod, selection-wise," he said.
"From a fitness point of view, these bilateral series are quite tight and there's a lot of travelling. Although there's a lot of travel in the World Cup, it looks like there's more space between games so it does give you a bit more of a routine to recover and come back stronger and be fit for the next game." (ANI)