Australia thrash England by 8 wickets in first one-dayer
England were again outclassed by the Australians in the opening One-day International (ODI) here on Friday, and suffered a double blow when star batsman Kevin Pietersen was ruled out of the rest of the triangular series with a cracked rib.
Set a modest 243 to win by England after comeback captain Michael Vaughan elected to bat first at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG), Australia made 246 for two to cruise to victory with 28 balls to spare.
Pietersen had been the one bright light for the English in a disastrous tour and he top-scored with 82 from 91 balls to help his side reach 242 for eight.
But late in his innings, he was struck flush in the ribs by a Glenn McGrath delivery in the 40th over.
Pietersen’s injury capped another horrible day for the English, with 36-year-old wicket-keeper Paul Nixon making a forgettable debut with both bat and gloves and star all-rounder Andrew Flintoff conceding an ugly 11 wides in the first over of the Australian innings.
The loss means England remain winless since arriving in Australia in early November and have won just seven of their last 28 One-day Internationals (ODIs).
Vaughan admitted his side seemed luckless, but it would not shirk the task.
“When it rains it pours,” he said. “Kevin will be going home and we’ll try and get him ready for the World Cup. We’ll keep going and it gives someone else an opportunity,” he added.
England’s total never looked enough, despite the efforts of Pietersen and Andrew Flintoff (47 not out).
Australian wicketkeeper-batsman Adam Gilchrist went on the attack early, hitting a rapid-fire 60 as part of a century partnership with recalled opener Matthew Hayden (28).
Gilchrist, who had an indifferent match behind the stumps, bounced back to hit seven fours and a six from the 61 balls he faced.
Hayden and Gilchrist put on 101 and brought up the Australian century in the 15th over, a milestone that the English took 24 overs to reach.
Although the introduction of spinners Monty Panesar and Jamie Dalrymple claimed the two openers and temporarily slowed the onslaught, England were never really back in the contest.
Australian captain Ricky Ponting (82 not out), who took a freak catch late in the England innings, and Michael Clarke (57 not out), then put on 133 for the third wicket to easily reach the victory target.
“I think we were tested tonight,” Clarke said. “But the way we started tonight, Gilly and Haydos set the tone. With those two at the top of the order and Ricky at No.3, you can nearly chase any total,” he expressed.
Pietersen was the mainstay of England’s total and his innings was highlighted by three sixes from the spin bowling of rookie all-rounder Cameron White.
Pietersen, who eventually holed out to Andrew Symonds on the mid-on boundary from the bowling of Stuart Clark, was offered useful support by Paul Collingwood (43) and Flintoff, who faced only 38 balls.
Left-armer Mitchell Johnson, 12th man for all five Ashes Tests, was impressive with 2-34 from his 10 overs.
Nathan Bracken (3-44) put the home side on top early, claiming the wickets of Andrew Strauss, whose lean run on tour continued when he was brilliantly caught by Hayden, and Vaughan.
Vaughan, in his first One-day International (ODI) since the 2005 Ashes campaign as he comes back from knee surgery, looked in good touch in making 26 before being caught in slips.
England won toss
A J Strauss c Hayden b Bracken 12
*M P Vaughan c Hayden b Bracken 26
I R Bell c Hussey b Johnson 15
K P Pietersen c Symonds b Clark 82
P D Collingwood c Johnson b McGrath 43
A Flintoff not out 47
†P A Nixon lbw b Johnson 0
J W M Dalrymple c Gilchrist b McGrath 2
J Lewis c Ponting b Bracken 9
M S Panesar not out 0
Extras (b1, lb1, w3, nb1) 6
Total (8 wkts, 50 overs) 242
Did not bat: J M Anderson
Fall: 1-20, 2-47, 3-73, 4-168, 5-206, 6-207, 7-211, 8-232
Bowling: McGrath 10-0-40-2 (1w); Bracken 9-0-46-3; Clark 10-0-58-1 (1nb, 2w); Johnson 10-2-34-2; Clarke 8-0-35-0; White 3-0-27-0
†A C Gilchrist c Nixon b Dalrymple 60
M L Hayden c Nixon b Panesar 28
*R T Ponting not out 82
M J Clarke not out 54
Extras (b1, lb2, w15, nb1) 19
Total (2 wkts, 45.2 overs) 243
Did not bat: M E K Hussey, A Symonds, C L White, N W Bracken, S R Clark, M G Johnson, G D McGrath
Fall: 1-101, 2-118
Bowling: Flintoff 6-0-48-0 (3w); Lewis 8.2-1-40-0 (1nb, 2w); Anderson 7-0-47-0 (1w); Panesar 10-1-46-1 (1w); Dalrymple 10-1-38-1; Collingwood 4-0-21-0
Result: Australia won by 8 wickets
Points: Australia 4, England 0
Man of the Match: Adam Gilchrist
ODI debuts: Paul Nixon and Monty Panesar (England)
Umpires: I L Howell (South Africa) and S J A Taufel. TV umpire: R L Parry. Match referee: R S Madugalle (Sri Lanka)
Next match: Sunday (tomorrow) Australia v New Zealand, Hobart
Source:The NewsMore on:Adam Gilchrist, Australia, england, Kevin Pietersen, Ricky Ponting
Written by Team CricketViewer on January 13th, 2007 with 54 Viewsno comments.
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