England ‘a bit more calm’ now after ‘tricky’ start to Australia tour, Nat Sciver reveals

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The Women’s Ashes begin this week  (Getty Images)
The Women’s Ashes begin this week (Getty Images)

All-rounder Nat Sciver says England are feeling “a bit more calm” now after initial frustrations with the strict coronavirus protocols in place upon their arrival in Australia ahead of the Women’s Ashes.

The squad were greeted with stringent conditions when they touched down in Canberra with players not allowed to meet in groups or go to restaurants, even outdoors.

“It’s been a bit tricky in terms of Covid rules and things like that and just making them fit for our group and keeping our mental wellbeing at the forefront as well as cricket,” Sciver said.

“But I think now, after the meetings that we’ve had – we’ve had a lot – and just discussing all the rules that we need to follow and where us as a group feel that we want to be operating at, (Tuesday) has been the first day where I think everyone is feeling a bit more calm, whereas last week everyone was very frustrated with the rules that we’ve had to adhere by.”

The multi-format series, which has been brought forward by a week, will start with three T20 games at the Adelaide Oval the first of which gets under way on Thursday.

England’s preparations had already been hit before their first training session in Canberra was washed out and their only scheduled 50-over intra-squad warm-up match reduced to just 35 overs, again because of rain.

The players were allowed to gather together again in Adelaide on Tuesday, which Sciver believes has provided the touring squad with a much-needed boost.

“Being together and being one as a group is why we love touring,” she said. “Being away from your family is hard and being away from your home, but when you have that group and being able to be together, just going round to someone’s room makes such a big difference.

“That is one of the rules that changed for us as we’re now Covid secure, the group is secure and we can mingle some more in smaller groups. That feeling was back again today.”

Although the series was brought forward, Sciver insisted England were at home with the T20 format.

“The schedule has been not 100 per cent confirmed for a while, so we knew that things could change around and obviously, with the 50-over World Cup being afterwards, it makes sense to play 50 overs right at the end,” the 29-year-old said.

“It is a strange way to go through the series in terms of formats but I think T20 cricket is where our team feels very comfortable and we’ve played a lot of it over the last two years and have had some good success – so we’re not too worried about it.”

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