IPL: Indian Premier League 2009


Collingwood leads England to opening victory

 
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cookTamim Iqbal’s glittering 125 was not enough for Bangladesh to break their duck against England as the visitors completed a professional six-wicket victory to open the one-day series at Mirpur. Tamim’s third ODI hundred came from 94 balls, but he couldn’t find any support from his team-mates, leaving England’s new captain Alastair Cook with 64 and Paul Collingwood, who continued his fine form with an unbeaten 75, to ensure no slip-ups chasing a modest 228.

England were little more than tidy throughout, muddling their lines with both bat and ball at times, but proved too strong for a Bangladesh side that continue to gift too many soft runs and wickets. However, Tamim’s innings showed what the side is capable of and certainly put England’s new-ball attack under pressure.

He was given a life on 10 when Eoin Morgan spilled a chance at cover and built on his reprieve with imperious strokeplay all round the ground that evoked memories of Saeed Anwar. One monstrous strike off a rare pitched-up ball from Stuart Broad was particularly memorable, disappearing over midwicket for six, but he also showed maturity in milking the bowling.

He skipped down the wicket and lashed Kevin Pietersen over midwicket to take him to 99 and clipped the next ball through point to the wild acclaim of a passionate crowd. However, as England recovered their composure Bangladesh’s lost theirs to a mixture of careless shots and poor running.

When England began the chase all eyes were on debutant Craig Kieswetter, but it was Cook, having not played an ODI since November 2008, who found the early boundaries. He timed the ball nicely through the off side and unveiled a number of effective leg-side sweeps against the spinners on his way to a 44-ball fifty.

Kieswetter looked nervous throughout his innings, especially after watching Cook farm the first 18 deliveries of the innings. Having been given five lives during his 143 in the first warm-up match he was fortunate again to survive early on. Shakib Al Hasan, Bangladesh’s captain, brought himself on in the fourth over and found an edge immediately, only to see his wicketkeeper Mushfiqur Rahim miss the chance. Two balls later Kieswetter was in trouble again, caught in front by a quicker ball, only for umpire Rod Tucker turn down the appeal.

Kieswetter eventually ran past a ball from Naeem Islam and Pietersen’s poor form from the warm-up games continued when he was given out caught at slip off the impressive Shakib although replays suggest ball had missed inside edge. When Cook fell, the victim of another dubious umpiring decision, England were in a spot of bother but Collingwood, as ever, anchored the chase.

The last few months have revitalised Collingwood’s career with his one-day form having shown a new lease of life since the Champions Trophy. He regularly skipped down the pitch to chip the spinners over midwicket whenever the required rate edged up as he passed fifty in 64 balls.

Morgan made up for his earlier gaffe and despite never looking entirely certain against Bangladesh’s spinners, glided, cut and reverse-swept his way to an important 33. He shared an 88-run stand with Collingwood before drilling Naeem straight to cover. It left Matt Prior, who retained his place in the side despite Kieswetter’s presence, to mop up the remaining runs alongside Collingwood.

It should have been a harder chase for England but Tamim couldn’t find any sustained support. After an opening stand of 63 they slipped to 82 for 3 after Pietersen’s direct hit to remove Aftab Ahmed and Shakib never got going before he was lured down the track by Swann, feathering a faint edge to Prior.

England turned the screw further with two wickets from successive balls in the 29th over when Rahim attempted a suicidal single to cover and Mahmudullah clipped his first ball to midwicket. Naeem at least showed some composure in a seventh-wicket stand of 63, but when he drove Luke Wright’s first delivery to cover the innings folded with 26 balls unused.

After his frenetic captaincy debut in the Twenty20 against South Africa, at Centurion, Cook was more controlled on this occasion and rotated his bowlers well. He knows England are expected to win every match on this tour which creates pressure of its own so he’ll be satisfied that this game has gone to the form book.
Source:Cricket News

Image Source:Cricinfo

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