Mark Wood's World Cup: 'Last man out, cut-throat razor & The Secret Life Of Pets 2'

Mark Wood
ICC Men's Cricket World Cup: England v Australia
Venue: Lord's Date: Tuesday, 25 June
Coverage: Watch in-play clips & highlights on the BBC Sport website, live Test Match Special radio commentary & text updates on BBC Radio 5 Live Sports Extra & BBC Sport website

Our past week at the World Cup went from an incredible high to a real low.

The win against Afghanistan at Old Trafford was barely believable. For Eoin Morgan, who had been struggling with a bad back, to hit a world record 17 sixes, was amazing.

I'm a terrible watcher, so I normally sit in the back of the dressing room and keep an eye on the TV. On this occasion, what was happening was so incredible that I had to get out on the balcony and see for myself.

It was a different kind of watching at Headingley as I waited, at number 11, to bat in what turned out to be a defeat by Sri Lanka.

It's actually a bit surreal to have to pad up in a one-day international, because this England team have batted so well for so long.

Even on Friday, as wickets were falling, I wasn't thinking that I would get in because our numbers eight and nine, Chris Woakes and Adil Rashid, have scored plenty of hundreds in first-class cricket, and number 10 Jofra Archer can whack it.

Like I say, I'm a terrible watcher, but on this occasion I was unusually relaxed. As I waited, I started to think about what I would do if I was required.

I spoke to Eoin and Jos Buttler about getting ready to face Lasith Malinga. Because he has such an unusual action, the ball is always coming towards the stumps, and Jos was telling me how he had made a mistake to be lbw. He recommended taking a leg-stump guard.

When I got out there, we still needed 47 to win and I was greeted by Ben Stokes, the man who I probably know best in this team.

He said: "Malinga is a threat, so I'll get through his overs. Let's look for twos because I think I can take on the left-armer [Isuru Udana]."

I thought: "Perfect, I'll do what I can."

When Stokesy was taking 23 off nine balls, including a couple of sixes, the atmosphere was incredible. People were singing and I really believed we could do it, especially with the way he was playing.

I had one ball to survive from Nuwan Pradeep. In the dressing room, we'd figured out he was just swinging the ball in, so again I was conscious of being bowled or lbw. Sod's law dictated that I edged it behind.

It was beyond disappointment, for so many reasons - not just because we lost. I don't consider myself as a bunny - far from it. I really back to myself to stick around.

I'd thought about it, talked to others and I had a plan. If I had managed to stay in, we would have won. Instead, I'm left feeling gutted and embarrassed.

I still haven't watched the ball that got me out back. I probably never will. I'm not sure I can face it.

Ben Stokes and Mark Wood shake hands
Ben Stokes had some consoling words for Mark Wood immediately after England's defeat by Sri Lanka

As we walked off, Stokesy grabbed me. He said: "Come here, mate. Get your chin up. Us losing isn't down to you. Make sure you walk off with your head held high."

It's great that your friends can say that to you - but it does little to change how bad you feel.

The truth is, though, I am in the side to bowl and, at the minute, I think I am in the best form I have ever been for England.

Not opening the bowling is a slightly different role for me, which is helping. The same goes for the way I am looking after my body.

The wickets I took at Old Trafford and Headingley have taken me to 12 for the World Cup. I know that I was spotted waving to various spots in the crowd and that was because my mam and wife were at the game in Manchester, then four mates from Ashington were in Leeds.

When people take the time to watch you, to support you, it's important to give them something back when you're out on the field.

Speaking of lads from the north east of England, Paul Collingwood, now the England assistant coach, and I had quite an experience when we looked for a haircut in London.

There we were, two jolly boys, lost in the big smoke. When the guy pulled out a blowtorch and started wafting it around Colly's ears he was like: "What's going on here?"

Then, when he had the cut-throat razor, a chunk came out of his neck. I don't think he'll be going through that again.

As well as getting my ears lowered, I've been getting to the cinema during my downtime. I went to see Aladdin with my wife and then, slightly more curiously, The Secret Life Of Pets 2 with Liam Plunkett.

Now, you might be wondering what two nasty fast bowlers are doing going to see a children's animation.

I can assure you that we started out with the intention of seeing the new X-Men film, but it wasn't showing. So, we gave what was on offer a good go.

We weren't spotted as we sat at the back eating popcorn, which is probably for the best.

Mark Wood pictured at the National Army Museum in London
Mark Wood visited the National Army Museum in London on Monday

With animated films exhausted until I get to see Toy Story 4 (which I'm looking forward to), my wife took me to the National Army Museum on Monday afternoon.

It's there where I drew up the battle plans for the game against Australia.

Playing the Aussies at Lord's in the World Cup is about as big as it gets, especially when we are looking for the wins that will get us back on course for the semi-finals.

Our skipper has talked about the reception that the likes of David Warner and Steve Smith might get, and I'm sure the crowd will be right into it.

For my part, I don't really get involved in sledging or anything like that unless someone says something to me.

What I do know is that it's tight in there. Our goal is to put points on the board and reach the semi-finals. From there, we'll take anyone on.

We have to stick to the values that have served us so well and got us to number one in the world.

We have to show our mettle, we have to show some fight and get back to the way that we have been playing.

Mark Wood was speaking to BBC Sport's Stephan Shemilt.

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