Nasser Hussain considers England firm favourites to lift the ICC Cricket World Cup and the Ashes in 2019. During the upcoming summer, England will host the Men’s Cricket World Cup for the first time in 20 years before featuring in the iconic Ashes series.
While the World Cup will be played from May 30 to July 14, the high-profile Ashes series is slated to be held in August and September.
“You have to go back to 1975 for the last time an English summer contained a World Cup and an Ashes, so it will be absolutely key that the players keep their minds on the job,” Hussain told The Daily Mail.
Nasser, who had represented England in two World Cups and captained the team in the 2003 edition, believes the hosts have the firepower to clinch both the prestigious trophies if they maintain a fresh squad.
“I see England as favourites for both, but they’re only going to win if everyone’s fresh and raring to go. And if that means players missing, say, the Test against Ireland in May, or a one-dayer or two against Pakistan, so be it.
"[Joe] Root, Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler and Jonny Bairstow play all three formats now, so England have to look after them properly. We don’t want to get to a World Cup semi-final or a crucial fourth Test against Australia and the players look jaded,” he added.
England are yet to win a 50-over World Cup, finishing runners-up on three occasions (1979, 1987 and 1992). However, a number of cricket pundits expect them to rewrite the history books in this year’s tournament.
The Eoin Morgan-led England ODI side are currently the number-one ranked team in the ICC rankings, while the Joe Root-led English Test side is placed at the second position.