Moeen Ali has urged England not to worry about a lost start to Jos Buttler’s captaincy, insisting the team will peak at the right time.
Buttler rose as a white-ball skipper following Eoin Morgan’s retirement last month, winning just one of his first four games against a strong Indian side.
The Tourists won the Twenty20 series 2-1 and then beat England by 10 wickets in their first one-day international, sacking them for 110 before ending runs without a loss.
They have a chance to put things right at Lord’s on Thursday, the three-year anniversary of their World Cup Final win on the same course, but with Buttler new at the helm and head coach Matthew Mott, also a new signing, Moeen takes it a longer-term perspective.
“Jos is a brilliant leader. He’s done it over the years when Eoin hasn’t played but it will take a few games in all formats,” said the all-rounder.
“As a new captain, no matter how cool you are, you want to get off to a good start, but he knows there’s still a long way to go and the team will be okay.
“There is no reason to panic or change. It definitely takes time to get into bed and it will take a few downs, which is fine. We’ve dominated in a nice way and played well in recent years. We’ve had a lot of success, but sometimes I feel like we don’t want to peak too soon.
“We want to win now, but you don’t want to win all the games. Sometimes you learn more by losing games. We’ve lost a few games at the moment but that’s good for us and closer to a World Cup we’ll start winning.”
Moeen was named by Morgan as a potential successor when he stepped down, a recognition of his growing influence in the dressing room.
Now, with eight years of international cricket and 232 caps under his belt, the 35-year-old is ready to support Buttler.
“As older players we have to move up in the team. When it’s your turn to do it, you will do it,” he said.
“Jos talks to the bowlers beforehand but he sometimes tells me to go to the bowler. It works well. When Morgs wasn’t playing, he was always like this. It’s not a problem to have a goalkeeper as captain.”
Moeen also gave his first assessment of Mott, who resigned from Australia’s all-conquering women’s team after edging out a strong field of candidates.
Moeen compared him to compatriot Trevor Bayliss, the world champion coach who empowered players and saw his role as a go-between.
“He has settled in very well. He’s very similar to Trevor, but he has his own ways, he’s very laid back,” Moeen said.
“The dressing room pretty much runs itself most of the time, so the boys are comfortable.”