Cricket tours are much more than mere sporting events. The ability to perform and thrive as a unit on a sustained basis, on alien conditions, stands as a shining testimony to the grit, determination and perseverance shown by the human spirit, to succeed against odds. Of course, at the other level is the fun and gaiety of watching two teams fight out an exciting contest between bat and ball.
The stakes are even higher considering that the ICC world rankings for both tests and one-days are likely to be influenced by the rest of these tours in a big way. Very few points separate India, England, and Australia in the ranking tables, and even a single victory or loss can have a big impact on the rankings.
The English cricket team has several tours lined up in 2017. After the ongoing five-test tour to India, followed by the limited overs leg in January 2017, the following are the scheduled tours in the first half of 2017:
* England tour of the West Indies: February 2017 to 9 March 2017
* The Ashes series vs Australia: November 2017 to January 2018.
* England tour to New Zealand: February 2018 to April 2018.
In between, the ICC Champions Trophy 2017 will be held in England and Wales, between the 1st and 18th of June 2017.
England has one of the strongest sides in world cricket, at the moment, and as such, all these tours are sure to generate considerable interest. Apart from the established players like captain Alistair Cook, Joe Root, James Anderson, Stuart Broad, and others, England has a strong second level of talented players, for whom these tours offer an excellent opportunity to establishing themselves as the next big guns. The players to watch out for in this category are Jonny Bairstow, Chris Woakes, Ben Strokes, Jos Bulter, Moeen Ali, and others. The spotlight will also be on bright new hopes such as Haseeb Hameed, Ben Duckett, Jason Roy, Keaton Jennings, and others.
England’s cricket tours in 2017 promise loads of entertainment and fun. Away tours are always difficult, and with strong opponents such as Australia, and a world championship thrown in, viewers can expect several nail-biting encounters.