Sophia Dunkley: England embracing aggressive mentality after playing ‘safe’ cost them


Sophia Dunkley says English women are embracing a new ‘aggressive’ mindset after playing ‘safe’.

Dunkley, one of the young stars of England’s revamped side, told Telegraph Sport’s Vaughany and Tuffers Cricket Club podcast that their battle in the Ashes and World Cup final defeat to the same opposition in April led to a reset.

England are currently playing in the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham and are hoping to get one over Australia this weekend to take gold.

“She [Australia] have certainly prevailed, but in recent weeks we have had a very exciting new T20 squad with a lot of young players in it,” said Dunkley. “We’ve changed the way we play. We’re more flexible in hitting and going much harder and more aggressive.

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“We were a little bit safe in the 50-over World Cup and the Ashes and were not in the best headspace collectively. We didn’t play our best cricket and we wanted to change that.

“We’ve gotten the players to take the game away from the opponent by being brave and not worrying about the consequences of getting out. The likes of Alice Capsey, who is 17 and very, very talented, Freya Kemp (also 17) has also played. We are looking a bit fresher again and hopefully that can bring them [the Australians]!”

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Dunkley, 24, has also called for at least one test match in every series the women’s team plays.

“We would like to play more international cricket and especially test matches. We’ve had two in the last year – and that seems like quite a lot, which is really crazy,” says Dunkley. “I’ve only played three so far and I’m definitely learning on the job as we don’t play red ball cricket outside internationals.

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“The few test matches we’ve played have shown really great and exciting cricket. More of that would be great for the game and a lot of girls would love that. It would be great to have a Test every series we have.”



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