England captain Andrew Strauss has insisted blaming a poor performance at next year's World Cup in Asia on the preceding Ashes tour of Australia won't wash as an excuse for failure.

No England team has ever won the World Cup, cricket's premier one-day trophy and many pundits believe it is unlikely to break its duck so long as it continues to head to the tournament on the back of an Ashes tour of Australia, where it hasn't won a Test series since 1986-87.

But Australia has won the last three World Cups, all after Ashes series albeit they were home campaigns for the Aussies.

Waste of time

Strauss, speaking to reporters at Trent Bridge here on the eve of first One-Day International between England and Bangladesh, said moaning about the fixture schedule was a waste of time.

“It is what it is and it didn't stop Australia winning the last World Cup,” Strauss said. “There's no reason why you can't go from a busy Ashes series and then win the World Cup.

“What you want in that Ashes series is for you to win and be full of confidence and have that under your belt before you go to the World Cup; that would be the perfect way to go in to a World Cup.”

England has been on the losing side in three World Cup finals, being well beaten by the West Indies at Lord's in 1979 and Pakistan at Melbourne in 1992.

The closest it came to winning the World Cup was on the back of its last successful Ashes tour, when an England team captained by Strauss's Middlesex predecessor Mike Gatting lost to Australia by seven runs in the 1987 final in Kolkata. — AFP

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