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England outplay jaded Kiwis

Jonathan Agnew | 18:02 UK time, Sunday, 15 June 2008

Riverside: When England play one-day cricket with this level of intensity, they look capable of beating anybody.

The re-jigged top order has a much more positive appearance to it, and the fielding inside the circle was aggressive and mightily impressive.

In contrast, New Zealand never really got going again and, frankly, look as if they have had enough of playing against England, losing the first one-day international by 114 runs.

After all, they have now lost six of the last seven matches they have played against them and haven't won a game....

Surprisingly, the early innovation came from Ian Bell who appears to be relishing his promotion to opening.

kp_tonap446.jpg

With Kevin Pietersen batting at three, this top order looks much more business-like for one-day cricket, which is why I was staggered that Andrew Strauss was called up as stand-by for Alastair Cook.

England have not been nearly busy enough at the start of innings recently, but the last two performances auger well.

Pietersen's century was thoroughly professional, but with two remarkable shots to savour.

First, he switched to left handed and slog-swept Scott Styris over cover for six before playing a shot that, surely, has never been played in international cricket before.

Again, he swapped his hands around and hit Styris high over long off. Styris simply shrugged his shoulders and KP's value in the IPL went up another notch or two.

The most amazing innings of the day was produced by Owais Shah whose 49 came from only 25 balls. Bear in mind that when he went in, his priority would have been to give the strike to Pietersen.

He played some remarkable shots - a mixture between clever deflections and towering sixes - and it was his contribution that drove the final nail into New Zealand's coffin.

Stuart Broad's bowling stood out once again. I was interested in the way both he and Wright bowled a number of balls with their fingers across the seam. This can, given a receptive pitch, make the ball stop a fraction and cause the batsman to mis-time their strokes.

Two wickets fell to that ploy, including Ross Taylor's, who planted a defensive block straight down long on's throat.

New Zealand needed to get their show on the road, but failed to rise to the occasion.

Unless they can pull themselves together at Edgbaston on Wednesday - and getting Jacob Oram on the field would help - their tour could end very disappointingly indeed.

Comments

  • Comment number 1.

    You can bet a lot of England players will be striving to impress the selectors between now and November, especially "in the short form of the game." Alas, the Kiwis don't have the same level of motivation....

  • Comment number 2.

    Well put Jonathan.

    New Zealand are defeated. They lost the will to fight at the second test. These are the extended last rites.

    Three cheers to KP.

    Three jeers to Belly - what was that run about? Come on.

  • Comment number 3.

    I really hope England stick with this team for all five matches, and if Wright cannot again find some big hitting fast paced form at the top of the order, another in the order could take the spot. The bowling was professional, Broad's outstanding especially, and the medium Collingwood and Wright, and the spin and guile of Swann makes this attack feel really mature and one which can go far. Anderson and Sidebottom didn't have great days, but they'll bowl worse than that and get wickets on another day.

    Any suggestions of any better opening batsmen than Wright? I feel he'd be better suited to late order smashing, but Shah has shown his credentials for that!

    Very glad Collingwood and Bell look back in good touch.

    One of the best England all-round performances I've seen for quite a while.

  • Comment number 4.

    great performance from england! but the only question mark has to be the opening position, i am a huge fan of the guy but not as an opener. i see him as a 7 with 10-15 overs to go and really push u up and beyond 300, he seems a really popular guy aswell and a good bowler. for me its a shame the elctors dropped mustard because if we had him opening with bell and wright at 7 then that side is near perfect.

  • Comment number 5.

    mustard
    bell
    pietersen
    bopara
    collingwood
    shah
    wirght
    swann
    broad
    sidebottom
    anderson

    Beat that!

  • Comment number 6.

    why the obsession with mustard? he had loads of games as opener but onlymade one decent score on a flat track in NZ. seems like a solid county pro. benning at surrey or pettini at essex could be the hitter at the top. matt prior too could play as a pure batter, he's in great form.

  • Comment number 7.

    Bell is doing well. But where is Prior ? Three cheers to KP.

  • Comment number 8.

    Like Wright as an opener but what about a certain Andrew Flintoff?

    Once fit he's got to be a in. Personally think Anderson is too expensive for one dayers and offers nothing with the bat

    So what about:

    Wright
    Bell
    Pietersen
    Bopara
    Collingwood
    Shah
    Flintoff
    Ambrose
    Broad
    Swann
    Sidebottom

    Batting all the way down to 10 and 8 competent bowlers.

  • Comment number 9.

    "First, he switched to left handed and slog-swept Scott Styris over cover for six before playing a shot that, surely, has never been played in international cricket before."

    I seem to recall KP playing that shot to Murali at least once in 2006.

  • Comment number 10.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 11.

    loved blowers 'expert' analysis of kp today. apparently his overall odi record is disappointing and today he showed little his flair and he struggled with his timing!

    theres quite a few batsmen who would like to struggle to 110 of a 112 deliveries, in the process of hitting 2 wrong handed sixes!

    his average of 50 after 66 innings with 6 tons and 18 50s isnt 2 shabby as peter allis would say.

    will blowers be let out again on wednesday or will it be that other 'expert' cmj?

    paul f

  • Comment number 12.

    I'd like to see Bopara sent back to learn his trade. Yes I know he scored 200 odd runs the other day - but that's not a sign of maturity, and I think he needs to mature a bit before he cements his side in the team.

    However, perhaps his place is assured until a certain Flintoff is fully fit!

  • Comment number 13.

    "I'd like to see Bopara sent back to learn his trade. Yes I know he scored 200 odd runs the other day..."

    Bopara has been back to Essex since he failed in Sri Lanka, and has got a lot more than just that 200 against a kolpak heavy Leics. He struggled today, maybe because he was thinking too much about impressing for England, but so be it - it happens. What sort of message would Bopara get if hes sent away to get runs, gets a lot of them and is then told "actually, get some more".

    As for maturity, he has shown that with his runs this season he can take a setback and carry on and improve. If he fails consistently in the series then maybe hes destined to be a Hick-esque and not handle the step up, but dont reject him just yet.

  • Comment number 14.

    As a Kiwi fan I am still waiting for NZ to show some fight. At the moment we are beaten before we get onto the pitch. Old Trafford 2nd innings is still haunting this team, and may do for quite some time. Steve Waugh used to talk about mental disintegration -- I think we're seeing a perfect example of it in this series, and well done to England for maintaining it by playing good cricket.

  • Comment number 15.

    11. At 9:12 pm on 15 Jun 2008, kpnumber1 wrote:
    loved blowers 'expert' analysis of kp today. apparently his overall odi record is disappointing and today he showed little his flair and he struggled with his timing!


    Pietersen did look like he was struggling to time the ball in the middle 15 overs. Also, his hundred today was his first in one day internationals in England, and his highest in 21 innings - dating back to last year's World Cup. I think Blofeld's comments are justified, because Pietersen himself would expect much more than that.

    That said, it was an exceptionally mature innings - he could have gotten frustrated easily, and really put us in the mire at 90 odd for 4. Luckily, he rode it out, and really cashed in during the final 10.

  • Comment number 16.

    Agree with comment #8.

    Anderson is an excellent bowler, but he's at times inconsistent and given the current depth of talent in the English one-day marketplace I think he's somewhat hard to justify unless his batting comes on somewhat.

    When Flintoff is fit and ready to rejoin England, Anderson has to be the first to go in my opinion.

    And I know this doesn't really make sense from a strictly pragmatic perspective, but I'd quite like to see Broad bat a bit higher up in this series. I doubt it would improve the team performance or indeed the score line but I think it would provide a very talented player with invaluable batting experience. His innings at the last test was, I'm sure, a glimpse of the future -- and the past.

    It's lovely to sit back and admire such a strong England ODI team when one thinks back to the duldrums 10 or so years ago. At the same time, it's a sad sight indeed to see the Black Caps so downtrodden. This hasn't been quite the classic tour of a few years ago unfortunately.

  • Comment number 17.

    I hear some are saying that the two shots of KP's you are talking about may be banned.

    Mad. It's why people go to see cricket.

    If he can do it then best of luck to him. It can't be compared to switching from over to around the wicket, which has been mooted. Doing that is dangerous. The batsmen swapping hands is not. If you watch where the ball pitches on both shots it pitches on leg for a rightie. KP could have nurdled a couple through leg but decided to play a riskier shot and hit away from the leg field. Surely a bowler would want him to do that??

  • Comment number 18.

    "First, he switched to left handed and slog-swept Scott Styris over cover for six before playing a shot that, surely, has never been played in international cricket before."

    Pretty sure Craig MacMillan's also done it, Aggers. Likewise, pretty sure he got a six from it as well!

  • Comment number 19.

    what a lame comment. Does Aggers get paid to write the obvious?
    "England can beat anybody if they play like this".
    What he fails to mention is that fact holds true for most of the top 8 test playing nations. Yes England played well, but remember aginst a weak new zealand side not playing their best cricket. They've lost a few players while England are probably playing their best one day outfit in years. But hey, stop publishing the blatantly obvious!

  • Comment number 20.

    "First, he switched to left handed and slog-swept Scott Styris over cover for six before playing a shot that, surely, has never been played in international cricket before."

    again being ignorant. like mentioned above a couple of people have done this before. Still a remarkable shot but hey, don't overstate it.

  • Comment number 21.


    Prior
    Bell
    Pietersen
    Bopara
    Collingwood
    Shah
    Flintoff
    Wright
    Broad
    Swann
    Sidebottom

  • Comment number 22.

    "Riverside: When England play one-day cricket with this level of intensity, they look capable of beating anybody."

    Reality-side: When New Zealand play one-day cricket with this lack of intensity, they are capable of losing to everybody.

    Let's not get carried away Jonathan!!

  • Comment number 23.

    Silk: KP's shot yesterday was different to the reverse sweep he played against Murali http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dnShx-eALhY
    . Yesterday he changed his grip to orthodox LH; I believe he retained his RH grip against Murali.

  • Comment number 24.

    Reverse sweeping/slogging raises an interesting point about the LBW law.
    For a right-handed batsman a ball pitching outside leg would change to one pitching outside off when the batsman attempts the reverse shot
    If he misses and is struck on the pad common sense would dictate that he was now batting left-handed and could be LBW because the ball would now have pitched outside his off-stump.
    And similarly for a left-handed batsman attempting a right-handed reverse shot.
    Does anyone know if umpires have been told by the MCC how to interpret the above ?
    Of course a batsman could make a complete hash of his attempt and even fall over. What then ?!!

  • Comment number 25.

    Fantastic innings by Pietersen yesterday and no of course "those" shots should not be banned. If the bowlers want to change the hand they bowl with why not? No problem for the batsmen I would have thought since he will have plenty of time to see what is happening as the bowler enters his delivery stride. As for bowling over / round the wicket a bowler would have to notify the umpire in advance, not least because the non striking batsmen will have to stand somewhere!

    Interesting about the LBW rule however. My view would be that if a RH batsmen informs the umpire that he is switching before the ball is bowled he should be treated as a LH for the purposes of LBW if not he should be treated as batting RH

  • Comment number 26.

    Further to the questions over the lbw law - what if the bowler spots him changing hands, and tosses the ball wide of what is now the left-handed Pietersen's off stump?
    Technically it is a leg side wide for a right hander, but if he's batting left handed for this ball does it become a legitimate delivery?

  • Comment number 27.

    Agree with most of the comments posted so far: Good performance yesterday, albeit against a weak NZ team.

    Wright is a good cricketer, but still not convinced he is the right man to open with Bell - however, lets hope he cements his opening slot during the rest of this series. At least he tried to graft for his runs yesterday.

    Personally, once Flintoff is fit enough I would have him open the batting with Anderson the man to make way out of yesterday's team - although he can be world class bowler at times, more often than not he is just too expensive for the ODI's.

  • Comment number 28.

    Why the confusion over the LBW rule?

    If a right-handed batsman takes the risk of switch-hitting, he should be subject to the consquences.

    If he takes his stance as a right-hander then his off stump should remain his off stump, meaning that he can be out LBW if it pitches outside the lefty's leg stump, and that if the ball goes down the lefty's leg side, it's not a wide.

    Bowlers are already put at disadvantage enough, why shift the balance even further towards the batsman?

  • Comment number 29.

    You gentleman can't be serious? One victory over a sub-par and under-performing New Zealand side, and you can beat anybody?

    You wonder why the English national team are constantly labelled as under-acheivers - because half the fans and the press label them as world beaters when the title isn't justified.

    Take a good look at yourselves people. Talk to me when you convincingly beat a real one day side like India or Australia.

  • Comment number 30.

    You can only beat what is in front of you. If it is tired and jaded, beat them well. I think we can all see what $20m will do to enthusiasm and intent! When the boks arrive later, we need to continue to play this way and then we will see if we can beat anyone. Lets not get ahead of ourselves!!

  • Comment number 31.

    "Take a good look at yourselves people. Talk to me when you convincingly beat a real one day side like India or Australia."

    Didn't we win our most recent series against each of those teams?

  • Comment number 32.

    Actually themuggaz, I agree with the general sentiment of your comment, but last time we played India in an ODI (Sep 2007) we stuffed them by 7 wickets with 82 balls remaining, and won the series against them.

    Last time we played Australia in an ODI (apart from in the World cup) we stuffed them in their own Commonwealth final(s).

    ODIs are a bit random and form needs to assessed over a long period of time. England can win against anyone when the wind is in the right direction and I think they have generally earned their position as 6th in the ODI rankings.

    Based on what I have seen over the last few days, however, I think we have a team that looks stronger than it has for a long, long time.

    And, I have to say, that with the advent of the Stanford millions, there does suddenly appear to be a new level of motivation behind the one-day team that wasn't there a week ago.

  • Comment number 33.



    "Didn't we win our most recent series against each of those teams?"

    Sorry RedRedRobin, I should have inserted a little caveat...

    maybe when you win a series or game that matters against quality opposition, you can consider yourselves as world beaters.

    The New Zealanders are doing nothing for the quality fo English cricket, because it is giving the English a false sense of security - I can't wait to see what happens to the openers against the quality Boks bowling attack - once again, England will be found wanting.

  • Comment number 34.

    Interesting caveat themuggaz.

    You know, I think one of the main reasons England has been so poor at ODIs is that none of them has mattered. Tests have always been our main concern.

    That's why I think that we may start to win a few more one-dayers now as the prospect of becoming a millionaire for a few hours work suddenly makes ODIs matter a lot!

  • Comment number 35.

    To all those questioning the LBW law - There is no need.

    KP did not become a left handed batsman, he was a right handed batsman who chose to play a highly unorthodox shot. He changed his position once the bowler was in his delivery stride and, whilst unusual, the principle is no different to taking several strides down the track. Had he taken his stance as a left hander before Styris began his run up then obviously the LBW law would be applied as if he were a left hander.

    As for wides, these are measured from the batsman's normal stance. In this instance his stance was that of a right handed bat so if the ball had missed his leg stump it would still have been a wide regardless.

  • Comment number 36.

    I don't understand Aggers' complaint about KP's left-handed slog for six. Boxers switch from orthodox to southpaw to gain advantage. Ronnie O'Sullivan is ambidextrous and plays brilliant snooker with his left hand to gain advantage. Cricket's 'genuine' reverse sweep is allowed, too. Changing hands is a matter of KP's talent and is not cheating. Where does it say in the laws of cricket that a batsman is not allowed to gain advantage in order to help his side win? Find the law that says a batsman is not allowed to hit the ball delivered to him in any way he can and I'll agree that that stroke should be outlawed. Aggers, of course, is complaining simply because he was a bowler!

  • Comment number 37.

    rlapper wrote that for a bowlwr to change from bowling over to round the wicket is dangerous and not like a batsman changing stance. How is it dangerous?

    I think that if a batsman changes his stance then the part of the LBW law prohibiting a dismissal if the ball pitches outside leg should no longer apply. From then on it should just be about if the ball would have hit the stumps.

  • Comment number 38.

    A good batsman would be able to play effective run-scoring shots on the off side without having to resort to switching hands and playing lefty (or taking huge strides outside the line to try pull a ball 'round to the on side). KP got away with two premeditated showboating grandstand shots with 500k at the forefront of his mind. If he'd skied either of them to the keeper even his drooling admirers would be obliged to consider him a complete prawn for trying such unnecessary nonsense. The great and good batsmen of yesteryear didn't bother with such braggadocio; they didn't need to (and nor did they have half a million carrots dangling before them as an incentive to 'entertain').

  • Comment number 39.

    funny how things can change in a relatively short time.

    i was in perth in january last year when new zealand absolutely humbled england in a one-dayer - only a few lusty blows from nixon near the end kept the score to within 50 or 60. and even though we somehow won the CB series, the world cup was an embarrassment.

    but since then we've got together a decent one-day side with a few good series wins.

    typical then that having finally worked out how to play the 50 over game all anyone cares about is twenty20.

  • Comment number 40.

    While this is a fairly uninspiring series already in many respects, with an under par NZ team, it is nice to see some of the England Boys stepping up and getting some good scores under their belts, no more so than KP who was great to watch yesterday.

    However, it would be nice if he was capable of opening his mouth at the moment without repeatedly commenting on the game in Antigua, in the post match interview on both Friday and Sunday he brought up how this was important for him to cement his place in 'that team'.

    We're only a year away from an Ashes series and as a spectator I'm slightly more interested in seeing us build up a strong, resilient squad who can compete on that stage, than a one off manufactured match where the only bragging rights that accrue to the winners are fatter wallets.

    If he brings it up again I'll be crossing my fingers for a niggling injury that puts him out of action for a couple of weeks at the end of October.

  • Comment number 41.

    No. 23, Gumptaff. I was at the Edgbaston game when KP changed his grip to left handed and hit Murali for 6. Apparently Murali threatened to bowl a beamer at him if he did it again!

    I'm happy to see the shot, and even as and England fan, would love to see McCullum play it. At some point, some one will come a cropper with it - KP could easily have done so second time around.

  • Comment number 42.

    Slight change of subject - am I alone in feeling frustrated by KP's sloppy running? Compared with Taylor who always seemed to be looking to turn a single into two, KP usually just trotted home without a glance at his partner - Bell in particular looking for another on several occasions. I know it is great to deal in boundaries, but in another match the 20-30 runs wasted in this way could be crucial.


  • Comment number 43.

    Kevin Pieterson's "left-handed" shot has raised questions about whether it's legal or not.
    The lbw rule states that "The most important factor when an umpire considers an lbw decision is whether the ball pitched outside leg stump. If the ball lands outside the line the of leg stump, the batsman cannot be given out - even if the ball would have gone on to hit the stumps."
    At what point during the delivery do the stumps get defined as leg stump and off-stump? As the bowler runs in, Pieterson's leg stump is on the right of the middle stump.
    AFTER Pieterson has jumped round and changed his stance, his leg stump is now on the left of middle stump. A bowler pitching outside (original) offstump could get an lbw decision but once Pieterson has changed stance, does this mean it is now impossible for him to be out lbw? At what point in the delivery does leg stump become off stump and vice versa?

  • Comment number 44.

    "New Zealand needed to get their show on the road but failed to rise to the occasion"

    Excellent work, mixing metaphors like the finest of football pundits - still, in the next match if it rains cats and dogs New Zealand could get away with murder!

  • Comment number 45.

    43.
    no matter if kp changes stance to left-handed, he took guard and signalled he was ready as a right-handed batsman, so the umpire will adjudicate any lbw as such.

    so if the ball pithes outside "leg" with kp changing mid-delivery to left-handed, the umpire could still give him out as it would still be deemed outside off.

  • Comment number 46.

    In the current West Indies vs Australia test, while trying to force the pace, Brad Haddin switched to left handed to try and slog Ramnaresh Sarwan's Leg break. When the ball passed down the leg side, the umpire signalled wide. However as Haddin was now batting as a left hander the ball actually passed down what was now his off side. The best instance of reverse sweeping I ever saw, was when Vince Wells of Leicestershire, reverse swept the Kent off spinner James Hockley for 6 consecutive fours in a championship at Tunbridge Wells. I bet this feat has never been equalled.

  • Comment number 47.

    For what its worth,hers my one day eleven

    Bell
    Prior/Mustard
    Pietersen
    Bopara
    Collingwood
    Shah
    Flintoff
    Swann
    Broad
    Sidebottom/S.Jones
    Anderson

  • Comment number 48.

    Seems like Jimmy Anderson needs to take a 5 for in every game else people are clamouring for him to be dropped. Give the lad a break.

  • Comment number 49.

    Thanks etienne123 for the clarification. However, a friend tells me that, "The off side of the striker's wicket shall be determined by the striker's stance at the moment the ball comes into play for that delivery."
    If the ball comes into play when it leaves the bowler's hand, then, as Pieterson had already changed stance by that point, this would make the leg and off stumps "switch round" and therefore to answer my own question it would mean he could not be out LBW. This would seem to contradict your answer. I'M CONFUSED. Your further thoughts would be appreciated.

  • Comment number 50.

    49. ummc30

    ha ha, now i am. i was always taught once the batsman was set to receive then the game was live - eg fielders not swapping positions. maybe the umpire would give any batsman out anyway just for being a smart a*se!

  • Comment number 51.

    I'm worried about the length of the England tail. This game we got a hundred from KP, but if he had got out early we could have been in trouble.
    Ambrose,Swann,Broad,Sidey,Anderson is a long tail when you have Colly and Wright in the team who could both be used for all 10 with KP maybe being mixed in for 1 or 2.
    I would prefer to see 1 more batsmen in the team, or of course, 1 of those listed being Flintoff in the future.

  • Comment number 52.

    augurs well, NOT augers well
    England are playing a crappy team.
    As usual these twitty English commentators het too high when they are high and too low when they are low.
    The Aussies seem to alwasy show backbone, even when their team is in transition.

  • Comment number 53.

    The current furore over Pietersen's 'innovation' is ridiculous and you can certainly tell that Aggers used to be a bowler in his partial reporting of the issue.

    I see no reason why a batsman shouldn't be allowed to change his grip on the bat simply because bowlers can't choose to bowl either left or right arm. The fact is, the latter isn't allowed in cricket's rules and the former is permissible.

    The second point then is does Pietersen's ability to play the shot really give him that much of an advantage?

    I felt he was taking a huge risk with both of those shots and if he'd been bowled middle stump when attempting either of them he'd have been pilloried in the media by the likes of Agnew, would never have tried the shot again and we wouldn't even be having this debate.

    The fact that he executed the shots successfully is what has wound up the bowling fraternity so much and it quite simply smacks of sour grapes.

    Agnew talks of how Pietersen changing his grip is "unfair" on the fielding side, because of how bowlers and captains set their fields. Well, for a start, I'd like to see what field Daniel Vettori could have set on Sunday in response to those shots as they soared over the boundary.

    It's not deemed "unfair" if a batsman chooses to advance down the pitch as a bowler comes into bowl, or decides to move across his stumps to the off side. Do you hear fielding captains complain that if they'd known the batsman would do that, they'd have chosen a different field?

    Actually, if I were Vettori, I'd be perfectly happy for Pietersen to be playing such risky, unorthodox shots. All this attention is bound to make him play it again - and equally he'll get it wrong at some point...

  • Comment number 54.

    51 - Broad has already shown he can bat at the highest level, and Swann opens the batting for his county in limited over matches, so you effectively bat down to 9 - I think this is one of the best tails england has had for yonks.

  • Comment number 55.

    "When England play cricket like this, they can beat anybody"

    But the point is that they hardly beat anybody...

  • Comment number 56.

    You've got to say that this England side is multi-talented. Suddenly despite all the media rubbishing them for so long, they begin to come together in both Test and one-dayers, not to mention the Twenty20 on Friday.

    It would be absolutely fabulous if the media ate humble pie for a change - they shove it down the throats of our cricketers endlessly ...........

    Hats off to Pietersen, Shah, Collingwood, Broad, Bell to mention but a few, for this morale-boosting couple of games. This has to be good to be so confident in front of a much sterner test against South Africa who are no slouches, as Michael Vaughan has observed.

  • Comment number 57.

    hahaha. That is a hilarious statement. England can beat anybody in cricket. This is a Kiwi size without Shane Bond and a bunch of rookies. South Africa will put Engand back where they belong -- Rubbish
    Australia or any team from subcontinent will confirm all these rubbish English players mediocre talent.

  • Comment number 58.

    I see a few comments saying Anderson isn't suited to the one-day game. What short memories people have! He has been a bit below par in recent ODIs, coincidentally just when his test match performances have been getting better - or coincidentally when bowling a lot to Brendan McCullum and Jesse Ryder. ;) But look at Anderson's record - the second highest rated England one-day bowler after Flintoff in the ICC rankings. Fourth highest ODI wicket taker in the all-time England lists and 2nd equal all-time best strike rate (with Darren Gough), second after Flintoff.

    I know they say you're only as good as your last game and he didn't have a good one yesterday, but he hasn't taken 121 ODI wickets by accident. Hopefully he will get back in the groove as the series progresses.

  • Comment number 59.

    The greatest thing about Bopara and Wright is they have something to prove.

    Both are very destructive players and have the advantage and custom of 3-4 other top batsmen around putting up scores, England with winning confidence and momentum and a NZ team on the ropes.

    Its there time to join the party, make their contribution and put big scores in. England should aim for 300 min batting every time now. They have the batting to consistently acheive this!

  • Comment number 60.

    A very professional performance and a great overview once again from aggers.
    My only complaint would be that with having wright opening with bell and of course ambrose replacing mustard and batting down the order, who do we have to push the run rate in the last 10-15 overs if no-one in the middle order has made a big score. Surely bringing back mascherenas or demoting wright would make the batting line up more solid. However, if england continue scoring runs and not losing wickets then there will be no need to worry especially with all the batsmen looking in great form, not forgetting broad who is a compitent batter who has a maturity beyoind his yearss. Keep up the good work and lets replace NZ as the 3rd best ODi team!!!

  • Comment number 61.

    A good point was made re NZ playing Eng again, why do we arrange home fixtures against teams we have just played away. We need to swap the opposition around so that they don't get fed up with playing each other.

  • Comment number 62.

    Regarding Pietersen's lefthanded shots - surely he can be given out as if he were a right or left handed player? As, when the bowler releases the ball how are they to know which way he will bat? So, as soon as he FIRST plays this shot in his innings, from then on he should be given out regardless of which way round he is when the ball strikes him. Similarly, in one day cricket, the wides are very strict, but again, as soon as he first plays this shot no wides can be given against the bowler, as the bowler should not be limited to bowling one side of the wicket against someone who is batting as a right and left hander. The umpire cannot give legside wides anymore once he starts reversing! great! that should keep the umpires busy!

  • Comment number 63.

    Pot (#53): wonderful summary. In all the ranting afterwards the one people NOT complaining were the New Zealanders! Somehow the complaints from other supporters seem to smack of jealousy rather than a fear that the laws of the game have been impuned.

  • Comment number 64.

    Talk about getting carried away . Sure England won convincingly against a side from a country with a population of only 4 million. Also a side who have recently lost several of their best players over the last few years (Fleming , Bond , McMillan ).
    So England beat an inexperienced side on their home turf - no great shocks.

    They should beat NZ every time .

    I don't think anyone should get carried away just yet - let's see how they do against South Africa then we can judge if they are a top 3 side which is where they should want to be.

  • Comment number 65.

    skdevnani, actually England beat a side two places above them in the ICC ODI table and that had beaten them convincingly just a couple of months ago. It doesn't make England world-beaters, but it's another step in the right direction after series wins against India and Sri Lanka.

  • Comment number 66.

    Twenty20 is different from the one day game but I can't help but think that the incentive to do well in $1m games will ultimately help in the quest for that elusive World Cup. The players just have to be really on their game to be selected.

  • Comment number 67.

    Hey, aggers, lets not fall into the English trap of self indulgence and disrespecting our opponents. England still have a long way to go to rival the talent/competitiveness of South Africa and Australia. Lets enjoy the NZ moment, but lets get real!!

    New Zealand have the firepower via McCullum, Taylor and Oram to put 300+ score out their, and the bowlers Vettori, Mills and Oram to bowl England out, if we trip over our own self inflation.

    Summary: Always respect your opponent, next match, different day, different pitch.

  • Comment number 68.

    absolute nonsense.

    England won a contest between a happless New Zeland side and now everybody is calling it a 'great victory'. sure the margin was high, but England were playing a team that is now comparable to Bangladesh. New Zealand is a pathetic cricket country and it is time their test status comes under some review. I think New Zeland cricket is more a burden on the ICC now than anything with the amount of test cricket to be played and scheduling to take place. The ICC would be better off to relegate New Zealand from the 'test nation' panel so that they could concentrate more on restructuring their game domestically. Their cricket tours are neither financially profitable (for either the home country or away) and they end up taking too much space in the ICC calendar. I simply call for them to be disbanded so that New Zealand can concentrate on one-day performances solely and thereby improve on at least one form of the game.

    England defeating a team like New Zeland shoud not be a test of anything. It is safe to say that England beat a county cricket side.

    Also, England on their day cannot beat anyone. They would even struggle to beat themselves. Scoring 300+ against a third string New Zealand attack was nothing special. You can say England batted outstanding only if they reached a score of 375+ aggainst an attack so horrible like New Zealand.
    If you remember the 5th ODI in the Natwest Series between Sri Lanka and England in Edgebaston, I think. England scored 325 and Sri Lanka chased it down in the 40th over. England also have a poor bowling line up. The young Broad is far too inexperienced and will go for plenty against any quality opposition. Anderson is as bad and Collingwood is rubbish.

    Please dont say English cricket is good because it clearly is not.

    England needs to have a league modelled on the IPL with wealthy franchises bidding for players. That is the only way limited overs cricket can be popular now in England, now that the IPL is over. The IPL has now become the premiere form of limited overs competition so these pointless ODI's and one-off 20/20 matches that country's play will soon become a thing of the past. There will be leagues, champions leagues-for leagues in 20/20's, test match tours, and country world cups.
    New Zealand should be allowed as a limited overs playing country only. Including them in test cricket will be a burden on other test playing nations as they have to play them, which is time consuming and not profitable financially.


  • Comment number 69.

    Mr mumbai indians,
    you just wrote a bunch of nonsense.
    Its disappointing for me as an indian fan, u choose to have a name mumbai indians and talk so much rubbish about nz and constant references to 'profits'.
    Yh NZ are one of the weaker sides, but they have lost two very important players in Fleming and Shane Bond. Teams often go through a transition period, and this is certinly the case for NZ. Demoting them is just ridicolous. Only one team has played with consistency over the last 10 years and thast Aus, other go up and down.
    To suggest IPL is more important then international matches think again. Even in India, no one would pick success of IPL over the national team.

  • Comment number 70.

    Ay, ay ay...somebody needs a Happy Meal. I don't know why you're complaining about us so much, Mumbai...when was the last time India and NZ played a Test series? About five years ago, IIRC. Not exactly crushing India's schedule, is it?

    As for KP...given that the MCC has sanctioned switch-hitting, I think it's only fair that they get rid of the over/around the wicket rule as well. Or maybe one of the bowlers could reply in kind by bowling out of his 'wrong' hand at the last moment. That would work better for a front-on bowler, though. Lance Cairns would've been perfect for it, since he did everything @rse-about-t!t in his delivery action anyway.

  • Comment number 71.

    Archangel, India lost their last one day series to England, so maybe we ought to disband their ODI team too so that they can concentrate on other forms of the game. Mind you, he'd probably like that idea.

    There may be a future tours programme, but it has not gone unnoticed that certain sides do not seem exactly keen to play all their opponents regularly.

  • Comment number 72.

    I am fine with KP's switch hitting. But one concern, I being a natural left handed batsman, initially take a right-hand guard and let the captain set the 6-3 off-onside field for Right handed batsman.Then during the bowler's delivery stride, I change to left handed which is my natural and strong side. I have got only 3 fielders on my offside and I can as many runs I need on the offside and on the leg which is a strong side for any batsman and it doesn't matter how many fielders are there. So I have got an unfair advantage.

  • Comment number 73.

    Jonathan: When England play very well they ARE capable of beating anyone. When they don't play so well..... they are capable of losing to ANYONE!
    Limited over cricket is like that. One big innings; one good bowling spell is enough to win it. You know that.
    Let's celebrate when England win matches but not get too carried away!

  • Comment number 74.

    intellectual Adam,

    I know teams go through transition, they lose players and new players come in. Sri Lanka, Pakistan, India, Zimbabwe, West Indies, australia and Bangadesh all have gone through transition periods.

    you mentioned that new zealand have lost bond and fleming and that is a 'big loss' according to you. Bond was never anything special so it is silly to try and say that he would have made any difference to new zealand cricket by staying. I feel he did the right thing by ditching new zealand for the comfort of the ICL. fleming was new zealand's greatest batsmen without a doubt. He is surely missed in new zealand.

    however, new zelaand have only lost a couple of players. compare this with sri lanka, for instance, they lost arjuna, aravinda, hasha, gurusinghe, mahanama but they had replacements ready by the dozen. and now look at their quality and bench strength. with upcoming players like chamara silva, kapugedera, ajantha mendis, sri lanka cricket has a bright future. also, in India, with the side-line of senior players like Dravid, Ganguly, Laxman, Tendulkar and Kumble, the Indians have been able to build a young Indian ODI team. And the new talent in India seems to be accomodating quite well so far unlike new zealand.

    the same goes for west indies, australia and south africa.

    but new zealand is still awfull. I dont think cricket will be popular in new zealand so there is no need for anyone to try and market it there.

  • Comment number 75.

    mumbai indians,
    You say Shane Bond was never anything special , but his career statsitic beg to differ.
    TEST: 79 wicktes in 17 matches at an average of 22.39
    ODI: 125 wickets in 65 matches @ 19.29


    Kapil Dev aside, I cannot name one other indian fast bowler who has been a better international bowler. During his career, he wouldve walked into any international side, so I dont know wat your talking about.

 

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