Wellington: Moeen Ali insisted Tuesday that England were "over" a crushing defeat by title-favourites Australia in their opening match of the World Cup.
England were thumped by 111 runs in Melbourne on Saturday in a game where little went right for them from the moment they dropped Australia century-maker Aaron Finch off the fifth ball of the match. Co-hosts Australia piled up 342 for nine before dismissing their arch-rivals for 231 to record an emphatic victory. "Obviously we were disappointed after the result, but we are over it now," said England opener Ali, whose side now face another stiff Pool A challenge when they face New Zealand, the other host nation, in Wellington on Friday.
"We know we have to move on. The next game is very, very important for us," said Ali. "Individually, everybody has done their own little bit. We have had a couple of days off and then we analyse it together and go from there." Ali said there was still plenty of time for England to recover and book their place in the quarter-finals. "We have so much to play for," he said.
"It was just one game. The World Cup is not decided over one game. It is a long period of time. There's a long way to go." All 14 teams will play six first-round matches, with the top four from each of the two pools qualifying for the quarter-finals. But with New Zealand also one of the fancied sides to win the World Cup, Ali was well aware that things were not about to get any easier for England.
"Australia have set the standard and New Zealand is going to be just as hard, we feel," he said. "We are going to have to up our skill level and up our game against New Zealand. It shows just how tough international cricket is, and in a major tournament we are going to have to be ready." Ali, admitted England, who also lost to Australia in the tri-series final a few days before the World Cup, had been well below the mark at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.
"That was probably the worst we've played in Australia throughout the trip so far," he said. "It's good to get that game out the way, even though it was a bad result for us. We just look forward now to Friday." After Friday's game, England will fancy their chances of getting through to the knockout stages with matches against
minnows Bangladesh, Scotland and Afghanistan.
"It's a tough draw, very tough, two of the best sides up front," said Ali, whose off-breaks also provide England with a spin-bowling option. "If we can win on Friday, it puts us in a great position I feel. It will show everybody that we are a good, serious side." Ali, meanwhile, was desperate to spend more time at the
crease after managing just 10 runs against Australia.
"As a top-order batsman if we can get in and look to bat the 50 overs or even 35 overs these days, you can get double hundreds," he explained. "Guys are getting close now, when they get a hundred they get big hundreds. "It's a about us getting in and doing it for the team."