Archive for January, 2013
Stuart Broad’s return to action has been put back due to the adverse British weather conditions, as snow ruined the bowler’s travel arrangements in his bid to link back up with the England squad in India.
Broad has been back in England since November recovering from a heel injury that had been niggling the bowler for much of 2013. The problem came to a head during England’s second Test in India, which forced Broad to head home in and rest up over the festive period.
The 26-year old was due to return to India for the final couple of ODI’s, but will instead now join back up with the squad when they arrive in New Zealand, ready to lead the team in the first Twenty20 in Auckland on February 9.
The lack of game time before then will be a worry to the management, but Broad has been working in the nets since the start of the year and a T20 game may well be a better format to return in than a 50-over game.
England’s one-day coach Ashley Giles admitted the delay had disrupted the team’s plans, but believes there is still plenty of time to get Broad ready before the first Twenty20 game of the New Zealand tour.
“It’s not ideal because we were hoping for him to come out here and, whether or not he played in one of the last two games, just do some prep for New Zealand,” admitted Giles to cricket betting news reporters.
“But we have a bit of time in New Zealand and he’ll meet us there. It can’t be helped; you can’t do much about snow.”
Broad will be as desperate as anyone to get back to playing. The bowler will know his place in the team for this summer’s Ashes series is anything but guaranteed, and the next few months will be essential for Broad to prove he is still an integral part of England’s Test plans.
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England players have been left scratching their heads in recent days as they try and work out why the side has lost form so dramatically in their one-day series with India.
After their thrilling victory in the opening game at Rajkot there was real belief among the squad as well as punters at Betfair.com that England’s sub-continent woes had been put behind them.
However, the home side have strolled to victory in the following two matches, culminating in Sunday’s joyous win in Ranchi, captain MS Dhoni’s home town.
England were skittled out for just 155 in that game, failing again to spin bowling, with Ravi Jadeja taking three key wickets in the heart of the England innings. The fact Jadeja was not generating much turn, on a relatively flat pitch, puts the technique of England’s batsmen in the spot-light
It was England’s lowest score batting first in a completed one-day international since they made 146 against New Zealand in the Champions Trophy in Johannesburg in 2009, some 68 matches ago.
So what went wrong? Well it appears the middle order struggle if the opening few batsmen do not get things off to a decent start.
Though there has been plenty of work gone into spin bowling, it appears England’s confidence is fragile and old habits rise to the surface when the pressure is on and wickets are falling.
While that puts pressure on the likes of Alastair Cook and Ian bell at the top of the order, those below them should start to take responsibility.
The performance of young rookie Joe Root, who hit 39, was a major positive, other, more experienced team-mates would do well to take not of the composure shown by the young Yorkshireman in the fourth ODI in Mohali on Wednesday.
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England’s hopes of securing a confidence-boosting ODI series win over India suffered a huge shock on Tuesday after Alastair Cook’s side crumbled to a 127-run defeat in Kochi.
Having come into the game off the back of their first one-day victory against India in 13 attempts, the visitors were slight favourites in the India v England betting to make it 2-0 in the five-match series. They were even on course to achieve such a feat as India feared an embarrassing loss themselves – at one point being 174-4 with a few overs remaining.
Yet a staggering 82 runs off the final six overs soared India’s score to a respectable, yet nevertheless still beatable, 285-6. Seamers Steven Finn and Jade Dernbach took two wickets each but that was as much as England could boast as captain MS Dhoni (72) and Ravindra Jadeja (61 not out) knocked 82 from 36 deliveries to force India back in the game.
England still must have sensed their chance but when Ian Bell fell for a single the warning sirens began to sound. Kevin Pietersen steadied the ship before Cook fell for 17, and when Joe Root and Chris Woakes went in the same over to Jadeja, the tourists’ spine was broken as they made just 158.
The embarrassing 127-run loss was the second worst ever ODI defeat to India in England’s history and gives Cook and co. a major reality check heading into the next three matches. England are unlikely to change their XI and to be honest they shouldn’t, for their batting display will have ruined any confidence mustered from that first match outing and those who flopped in Kochi must be given a chance to redeem themselves.
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The result of warm-up games are largely irrelevant and quickly forgotten once the real action starts, but the manner of England’s two ODI defeats this week must be causing Ashley Giles some alarm.
England’s new limited overs coach, taking the role as part of a new job-share arrangement with Andy Flower, will demand improvement ahead of the first ODI in Rajkot after six and nine wicket defeats in the space of two days, even though he knows the India v England betting is against his side given their recent wretched record there.
At least the displays are going in the right direction, well beaten by India A on Sunday, England at least put up a fight against Delhi.
Ian Bell was the stand out figure, top scoring with 108 (to go with his 91 on Sunday) and sharing a partnership of 113 with Eoin Morgan.
Their total of 294-5 is certainly competitive and one that suggests the batsmen are starting to get to grips with the sub-continent pitches once more.
However, that hefty total looked smaller with each passing over as Delhi got struck into their task diligently, Dhawan and Chand getting them off to the perfect start with an opening stand of 98.
Dhawan struck an impressive 110 off just 109 balls but his dismissal simply roused Delhi further, with Milind Kumar (78 not out) and Rajat Bhatia (45 not out) seeing the hosts to victory by six wickets.
The main worry for captain Alastair Cook was the inconsistencies of Steve Finn, Stuart Meaker and Chris Woakes.
With James Anderson, Graeme Swann and Stuart Broad at home, Cook has not real go-to man he can rely on, meaning some of England’s younger stars need to get to grips with international cricket quickly if they are to defy the cricket betting and inflict a debut defeat on new boss Giles.