Alastair Cook: England will not be batting on Spain trip

Morgan world-class says captain Cook

England captain Alastair Cook has said there is no batting practice planned for the team bonding trip to Spain.

A 14-man squad leaves on Saturday for a four-day clinic with new coach Trevor Bayliss before the Ashes on 8 July.

"We don't need to constantly train, we don't lose it in two or three days of not picking up a bat," said Cook.

"We're in a unique situation, that 11 days before an Ashes series none of us had met the new coach before, so going away seemed to be the best option."

The skipper, who has won three and lost two of his Ashes campaigns, claims winning this summer's five-match series would be the greatest achievement of his career.

Cook, 30, has won 114 caps and eclipsed Graham Gooch's record as England's leading Test run-scorer last month.

England fixtures against Australia
1st Test: 8-12 July, Cardiff
2nd Test: 16-20 July, Lord's
3rd Test: 29 July-2 August, Edgbaston
4th Test: 6-10 August, Trent Bridge
5th Test: 20-24 August, The Oval
Twenty20: 31 August, Cardiff
1st ODI: 3 September, Southampton (day/night)
2nd ODI: 5 September, Lord's
3rd ODI: 8 September, Old Trafford (day/night)
4th ODI: 11 September, Headingley
5th ODI: 13 September, Old Trafford

Australia begin their defence of the Ashes in Cardiff next month, having won back the urn in emphatic fashion with a 5-0 win last year.

"From where we've been if we did win the Ashes that would be remarkable, something I'd be very proud of. It would be my best achievement," Cook said.

Cook highlighted the first Test against New Zealand at Lord's last month as a key moment for his side's season. England won the match by 124 runs having recovered from 30-4 on the opening morning, with Joe Root and Ben Stokes putting on 161 in 32 overs.

"To me the summer started with that partnership," said Cook.

"The way they played was very un-English - a counter-attack scoring at six runs an over rather than trying to scrape through - and from that moment on there was a sea change in everyone's mentality."

Under captain Eoin Morgan and temporary coach Paul Farbrace, England won an entertaining one-day series against New Zealand 3-2 and also captured the one-off Twenty20 international against the Kiwis.

"English cricket feels good at the moment," Cook added. "Being away from the international game for a couple of weeks while the one-dayers have been on, the way Eoin and Paul have led that team, the cricket they have played has been fantastic to watch.

"I couldn't have been more proud. Five or six of those guys who were heavily involved in that team are going to be heavily involved in the Ashes and absolutely we can use some of that."

BBC Radio coverage of the Ashes

Morgan made 322 runs at an average of 64 in the one-day series and Cook said the left-hander could in contention for a Test return, having played the last of his 16 matches in February 2012.

"He is a world-class player and it has turned round beautifully for him in the past couple of months. You have to earn the right for selection but he is always slightly ahead of a few people because we know he can handle the big stage."

England bowler Stuart Broad says it will not be a major issue for the first Australian coach of the England team to be facing the country of his birth.

"It's an interesting dynamic but it's great for us as players - we can pick his brains of how Australia like to play, what their potential weaknesses can be," said Broad.

"He's going to be wearing three lions on his chest and he'll be desperate for England to make a stamp on that series."

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