Hunsworth cricketer Liam Thomas admits England’s physical disability squad must stop being their own worst enemy if they want to make waves as an international touring team.
The wicketkeeper-batsman was part of a 15-strong party in Dubai for a six-match Twenty20 and one-day international series with Pakistan.
And although 20-year-old Thomas and England put up a strong fight at the ICC Global Cricket Academy, they ultimately left with a sour taste as they lost both series’ 2-1.
Despite losing 4-2 overall, it was still an improvement on their maiden tour to Dubai to play Pakistan in 2012 when England’s squad, which also included Thomas, arrived home having suffered a 4-1 defeat.
But that was of little consolation to Thomas, who plays his club cricket for Scholes in the Central Yorkshire League, who insists England should have had more to show for their efforts in the United Arab Emirates.
“While we were overall pretty pleased with our performances, we went out there to get one over Pakistan having lost last time and to not do that was ultimately disappointing,” he said.
“In the games that we lost we were well in the contest for the majority of them, and should have gone on and won, but we just couldn’t see them out.
“We did show what we are about but we just couldn’t get over the line and that was frustrating because we were in a position to win.
“But this is how we learn as a side, by going out to places like Dubai and playing against top sides like Pakistan.
“Pakistan are a good side and their players are very technical and overall it was a good advert for physical disability cricket. It is just a shame the result wasn’t better.”
Thomas was a fresh-faced 18-year-old when England toured abroad for the first time in 2012 but he returned this year a far more rounded cricketer.
That was demonstrated by some smart glove work in Dubai, although Thomas admits that personal accolades are not what he travelled to the UAE for.
“I was pretty pleased with how I played, particularly with the gloves as I took some wickets, and I felt more in control out there after two years ago,” said the former Whitcliffe Mount Business and Enterprise College pupil.
“But I went to Dubai looking to exact some revenge and to fall short is disappointing. We are a young side though and we have shown improvement, so hopefully we can come back and get a result.”
* Follow the England physical disability squad at www.ecb.co.uk