(BBC) Captain Alastair Cook hopes England can end a 38-year wait for a major 50-over trophy when they play India in today’s Champions Trophy final at Edgbaston.
England have never won a World Cup or Champions Trophy and will face an unbeaten India.
“It’s very important for us, one of our major goals this summer was to try and win the Champions Trophy,” Cook said.
“Not only will it break that duck of 38 years but prepare us well for the World Cup [in 2015], looking long-term.”
England have won only one ICC global event but that was in the Twenty20 format in 2010.
They have lost three World Cup finals, the last of which was in 1992, and also lost the 2004 Champions Trophy final to West Indies
England swing bowler James Anderson is second in the leading wicket-taker table with 10 scalps, only one behind New Zealand’s Mitchell McClenaghan.
Spinner James Tredwell has four wickets in three matches at a cost of 24.25 each and an economy rate of 4.61 per over deputising for Graeme Swann, who took 1-50 from 10 overs in his one match against the Sri Lankans. Cook gave no indication as to who would play in the final but said: “We’re very lucky to have two off-spinners who are outstanding, when one doesn’t play the other one does well and puts pressure on the other guy so Tredders has been given an opportunity and he has taken it just like we knew he would.” Tim Bresnan, who has taken four wickets in three matches, is available for selection having missed the semi-final following the birth of his son, Max Geoffrey.
Bad weather is expected at Edgbaston today and Cook is prepared for a shortened contest. “They’ve got a wealth of Twenty20 experience, they play a lot more than we do but I wouldn’t doubt anyone in our team – we’ve had these shortened games before and adjusted well so if it happens in the final there will be no reason why we can’t adjust,” added Cook.
“We’ve got an opportunity to win a major global trophy, which as a squad doesn’t come around often, so we’re desperate to take it.”
Thirty years ago this month India won their first World Cup and they won the competition again when it was last held in 2011. They are yet to win the Champions Trophy outright, having shared the trophy with Sri Lanka in 2002, and have lost in the first round in each of the last three events but beat England 3-2 when the teams last met in a one-day series in India in January.
Skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni said: “It’s a very important game, but in this tournament you only face the best of teams, so I think it will be a very good contest. England are a very good side, they know the conditions quite well so I think it will be very good for the spectators – that’s what we want to do, entertain the crowd.”
Asked about the measured style of batting favoured by England’s top three, he said: “They play proper cricket and often you need to see how athings are progressing.
With no reserve day scheduled for the final the tie must be decided on today, meaning an abandonment would result in the teams sharing the trophy. England (from): A Cook (capt), J Anderson, J Bairstow, I Bell, R Bopara, T Bresnan, S Broad, J Buttler (wkt), S Finn, E Morgan, J Root, G Swann, J Tredwell, I Trott, C Woakes.
India (from): M Dhoni (capt & wkt) R Ashwin, S Dhawan, R Jadeja, K Karthik (wkt), V Kohli, B Kumar, A Mishra, I Pathan, S Raina, I Sharma, R Sharma, M Vijay, R Vinay Kumar, U Yadav.
Umpires: K Dharmasena (Sri) & R Tucker (Aus)
TV umpire: B Oxenford (Aus)