Cricket, England, England cricket, England vs Pakistan, English cricket, Sanya Michelangelo, Steve Davies
Although I enjoyed the Twenty20s, some people complained that they were both one-sided games. Well, how many of England's Twenty20 matches this year have not been one-sided? And are those people happy now that Pakistan, didn't still beat England but at least lost by only 24 runs? Well, at least I'm happy.
The match was reduced to 41 over per side due to rain. Pakistan batted first in both the Twenty20s, losing the toss in the 1st Twenty20 and winning the toss in the 2nd. This time they won the toss and decided to field first. They played far better than the Twenty20s but that wasn't enough. None of the England batsmen disappointed with the openers getting to a flying start. Steven Davies blossomed the most. Strauss smashed the ball all around the park (41, three 4s, two 6s). Trott played almost till the end and did a good job by scoring 69. Collingwood came out to bat in the 25th over and when he needed to press on, he did, struck a boundary and a six before getting out in the batting powerplay. Morgan hit 2 boundaries (13 off 11). Bopara was innovative and magnificent in his 35* off 27 hitting 3 sixes! Perfect finishing. England finished with 274/6 which was better than scoring 300 in 50 overs since this was a 41 over game. Pakistan were rather casual in the field, as usual. Their giraffe, Mohammad Irfan, 7'11" debuted in this match and had to dive to pick up balls while fielding in the out field. And later, he suffered from cramps and went out of the field after bowling 3 balls in his 6th over. This led to a funny moment as Afridi, who bowled the rest of the Irfan's over, came to bowl the last over the innings but the umpires denied him saying that his those 3 deliveries will be counted as an over. Lol.
Pakistan were not that bad with the bat. Kamran Akmal actually managed to score 53 runs and Pakistan lost their first wicket (Hafeez) at 62. Anderson and Bresnan failed to get an early breakthrough. Though there was a close lbw shout off Anderson's delivery, which the hawk-eye suggested as hitting the stumps. And yet, even if the review system was in use, it would have stayed with the umpire's decision since only half the ball was hitting the stumps. The spinners got the first 3 wickets. Bresnan gave away runs but fetched Alam's wicket. Nothing special in the delivery, Alam just failed to hit boundaries, as he did in the 1st Twenty20 too. Umar Akmal provided some entertainment and hope for the Pakistan fans (43 off 33) but the hopes faded as he tried a paddle-scoop but sent it straight to Davies' hands off Broad. Afridi tried not to lose his wicket, scoring 19 off 25 but he had to hit boundaries as the required rate was soaring high. He gave a catch to Swann in Anderson's over (38th over), the ball went high but not too far. Pakistan's new batsman, Asad Shafiq, playing his 2nd ODI, came out to bat at No.7. He provided last hopes of Pakistan winning as he struck Timothy Bresnan for 4 boundaries in a row! At this time I was thinking, I've always wanted Bresnan out of the team and this time he may actually make England pay for choosing him. But his show wasn't going to last any longer as Yardy bowled him in the next over. Smart. Umar Gul tried his best, hit a six but later hit it straight to Moggie, the birthday boy, now 24, on a slower ball bowled by Jimmy Anderson. I wonder if umpires will have to change their thinking for Mohammad Irfan regarding lbw, his pads were as tall as the stumps. Stevie D bagged the Man Of The Match award in his 2nd ODI. Good day for England.
The 2nd One Day is on September 12, Sunday at 09:15 GMT at Leeds. Come back here for the interesting bits of the 2nd ODI. Bye for now!