A gradual but inevitable descent into cricket-based loathing and bile.

India vs. England, First ODI: Review

Posted on January 11, 2013 by in 40/50-over

England 325/4 (Bell 85, Cook 75, Dinda 2/53)
India 316/9 (Yuvraj 61, Gambhir 52, Tredwell 4/44)

England won by 9 runs

In a sentence

After bowling up some tripe, Jade Dernbach’s just about redeemed himself by closing out a rare one day victory for England in India, a success built largely on James Tredwell treading all over India’s batsmen.

In more sentences

England batted surprisingly competently, their spinners bowled surprisingly well and, for the most part, their seam attack bowled surprisingly poorly in a surprising game. Their fifteenth choice attack ultimately managed to defend a target on a phenomenally flat pitch, against India’s first choice batting line-up, in a triumph for rotation everywhere. Even more impressive was the way they overcame the barriers that their own fast men threw up – notably Tim Bresnan, who went at over 8 an over – and won anyway. Dernbach inevitably gets all the stick, but despite spending most of his overs following the slightly misguided plan of bowling two yards outside the left handers’ leg stump, he ultimately took the key wicket of MS Dhoni and bowled two excellent overs at the death.

It was a day of mixed fortunes for Jade Dernbach.

It was a day of mixed fortunes for Jade Dernbach.

Players of the day

This was a highly enjoyable international. The conditions favoured the batsmen (as did the new regulations), but whenever one of the teams looked to be pulling ahead, wickets fell. Really, on a pitch this flat and with an outfield this smooth, at least one of the eight men to reach 40 ought to have made a hundred. That said, England did superbly. The captain and his Lordship put on an impressively steady opening stand of 158, but when both fell in the space of four overs, things could easily have wobbled. Likewise, after Kevin Pietersen and Eoin Morgan had played themselves in and started to attack with venom they both succumbed within a few minutes of each other, but then Craig Kieswetter and in particular Samit Patel pulled England through to a competitive total, when they quite feasibly could have collapsed for fewer than 300.

Samit Patel batted so well that there were no jokes about his eating habits.

Samit Patel batted so well that there is no room for jokes about his eating habits.

India often looked in charge during their chase, especially the opening partnership and latterly when Yuvraj Singh, Suresh Raina and MS Dhoni were knocking the ball to all parts of the ground. However James ‘F**king’ Tredwell bowled splendidly and changed completely the meaning of the nickname that 51allout have afforded him. His Man of the Match award was completely deserved, though his moribund interview with Ravi Shastri in the ceremony was like watching grass dry. None of the seamers excelled, but did more than adequately in the pressure overs at the end of the match to see England home.

James Tredwell enjoys a well-earned sauna with Lee Mack.

James Tredwell enjoys a well-earned sauna with Lee Mack.

Outlook for Tuesday

Firstly, England’s seamers need to bowl better – notwithstanding the conditions here, they bowled pretty terribly. However the batting looks settled and largely untroubled by India’s attack. India had plenty of opportunities to defeat England, or at least to make them sweat, but again they failed to capitalise. Their batting ought to be collectively – or indeed individually – able to make big big scores, but from the evidence so far, their bowling is their weak point. After a season to forget so far, they need to change things around quickly, for more losses to England (England!) at home in one-day cricket would be beyond unthinkable.

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