Saturday, October 28, 2006

England Move Out of One Day Slow Lane

England lost their first two matches in the ICC Champions Trophy match due to poor batting. They won their final match due to good batting, suggesting that bowling is of less importance in one day cricket.

England are no further forward with regard to finding a settled team. Harmison was replaced by Jon Lewis who was arguably the pick of the bowlers, returning 35 from 10 overs, but the previously impressive Anderson disappeared for 72 from his 10. The selectors must feel like the cartoon character trying to plug holes in a dyke, no sooner is one run leak fixed, another appears.

On a two paced pitch Gayle and Bravo both made patient centuries, punishing the bad deliveries and not taking any risks until a large total was assured. In contrast Strauss and Bell both threw their wickets away when they both looked like they were going to emulate Gayle and Bravo. Bravo then blotted his copybook by claiming a catch on the bounce to dismiss Yardy, leaving Pietersen to hit a match winning 90 of 86 deliveries. However, Mahmood's contribution should not be forgotten. When he came to the crease 41 runs were required at more than a run a ball. His 14 off 21 deliveries was also a match wining contribution. England won this match because they were the side batting second.

So now it's the Australians!


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