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England left to absorb shocking defeat

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Oliver Brett | 21:22 UK time, Friday, 5 June 2009

There have been some stunning results by England's opponents on the hallowed turf of Lord's over the past century and a bit.

But this one, in the ICC World Twenty20 opener, by the Netherlands in their dayglo orange kit, and on a bleak, showery night, knocks spots off all the others.

And doesn't it just seem ever-so-slightly farcical now that England had begun to feel quietly confident about winning back the Ashes later this summer?

Whatever happens now, they will probably recover in time to prepare properly for that series. But it was a strange evening all round in NW8, and it wasn't just those scarily efficient floodlights - that made England look even whiter with mounting panic through the agonising climax - that were to blame.


Through the sort of general chaos that bad weather lends to cricketing occasions, the opening ceremony - such as it ever would have been - was reduced to two cursory speeches. One was by ICC president David Morgan and the other by the Duke of Kent - neither the sort of celebrity figure the younger fans in the family stands might have wanted to see.

The one person present they might have had something in common with, singer Alesha Dixon, did not perform at all, though she was briefly pictured with some MCC members who bizarrely had St George's flags painted on their cheeks.

By the time the cricket did start, 20 minutes late, England had already lost Kevin Pietersen to injury - another serious blow for Ashes watchers - and Graeme Swann to an overly bold piece of selection.

Swann has been one of England's best bowlers this year - how did he lose his place in the side to Adil Rashid? Though the young leg-spinner was not disgraced by figures of 1-36, Swann - a competitive so-and-so - might have done better.

Actually, while we're at it, was there not a case for one of Dimitri Mascarenhas or Graham Napier starting this match? Even if their bowling was not to be trusted - and I have a feeling they would not have been disgraced in that department - either one may have hit a boundary or two over the closing overs.


Instead, the out-of-form Rob Key - hurriedly shoehorned into the side to replace Pietersen, was there at the end - and he got nowhere near hitting a four from any of the eight balls he faced.

Teams always pledge not to be complacent when facing lesser opposition, but there was no question that the awful disease afflicted England this time.

First, after Ravi Bopara and Luke Wright had set the tone for a score of around 200, the middle order hopelessly drifted through the second half of the innings and had to settle for 163-6.

But they thought that was enough, and waited for the Dutch batsmen to throw their wickets away, blithely assuming their lowly opponents would comply.

Not a bit of it, and gradually the horror dawned on the home side that they had to pick up the match by the scruff of the neck. That was something they were unable to do.

After a poor winter, the quietly efficient coaching of Andy Flower, and intelligent captaincy of Andrew Strauss, had produced two thumping Test defeats of West Indies, and an easy 2-0 win in the one-day series to boot.

But here there was no Strauss at all, Collingwood had a really flat match - with bat, ball and as leader - and Flower simply had no time to repair the sinking ship - because the format of Twenty20 does not allow it.

This was not the worst ever performance by an England side. The Dutch not only deserve credit, they deserve massive plaudits for a terrifically bold batting performance.

But, in the context of setting an example in a global tournament they were hosting for the first time, this still might have to be regarded as the worst day for English cricket.


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  • Comment number 1.

    Why put Napier in the squad if you won't play him - even in one of the warm up games?

    Smacks of complacency.

    What possible use can a "hick from the counties" be to this team of thoroughbred international cricketers?

    Sarcasm folks courtesy of Essex

  • Comment number 2.

    England looked very good in the first half of their batting innings, young confident players playing bold and aggressive cricket, how did we manage to mangle this into a defeat?!

    Rashid over Swann and Key over Mascarenhas does look like complacent selection though - when it comes to One Day Internationals and T20; we never learn!

  • Comment number 3.

    Shocking selection. England must adopt the mentality of the national football team and realise that no team just deserves to win or lose a match based on reputation, and pick their team accordingly. After all, I doubt that we will see top players dropped for second string players in the World Cup qualifiers.

    I see that some of the tabloids are having a bit of a dig at Stuart Broad, which though understandable, I personally do not agree with. He made a mistake, yes, but firstly the team lost that match and secondly I feel it would be detrimental to English cricket to wantonly knock the confidence of the most promising player we have in our side. Especially after what has been a great year for the lad.

  • Comment number 4.

    RIP Twenty20 Cricket - the tracksuits will be cremated and the melted polyester taken to Holland.

  • Comment number 5.

    A shameful display, particularly in the batting department. Our middle order seems unable to grasp the electric pace required by 20/20 cricket. To have scored so few boundaries (and not a single six) against a non-test nation is abominable. More big hitters required and fewer 'proper' cricketers.

  • Comment number 6.

    Absolutely hysterical stuff. No commitment in the england team, we see it so often it is now routine. Admirably the english constantly talk up the teams chances as a 'new team with real potential' but puit them in the spotlight and they wilt, if indeed they were actually any good to start with. England is so far from being a force in world cricket it's unreal. Your cricketers seriously need some balls, it must make supporters so angry to watch such ineptitude. And all this talk of ashes victories??? hmmmm.... I think we'll all just be impressed if they turn up to the right ground.

  • Comment number 7.

    The portents of doom were perhaps in the Scotland "warm up" (sic) match. T20 is about full-on cricket in a blink of an eye. How can you end an innings with 5 wickets left still in the bag and on such an average score (after being 100 for none)? Arrogance, complacency and perhaps a disdain for the opposition? I assume we will now lose the first two Ashes Tests as we "warm up" for the final three?

  • Comment number 8.

    We should take apair of clogs and burn them,, the ashes being given to the Dutch to represent the brainless team selection and witless captaincy we seem capable of delivering on the world stage.

  • Comment number 9.

    After watching the highlights and Broad trying to cheat by breaking the wicket with his hand (mainly because his initial throw was so inept) he was quite rightly the one to gift the winning runs to the Dutch with another inept attempt to chuck a ball!

  • Comment number 10.

    Nice to see the author of this blog and so many others getting so worked up about Mickey Mouse 'slog it and forget everything you learned about technique' cricket. 'The worst day for English cricket'. What an embarrassing piece of drivel. Still, it's a sign of the times in an era when people with low attention spans' demands are paramount, that people should take Twenty20 seriously.

  • Comment number 11.


    Any game where someone pulls on a shirt with the national anthem playing is an event, and is not to be taken lightly.

    Your attitude is one of the reasons why we such at sport internationally.

    When isn't sport competitive?

  • Comment number 12.

    Thanks for the replies - keep the coming. Amid all the very understandable anger, I'm loving the humour in posts 4 and 8!

  • Comment number 13.

    England shot themselves in the foot, if ever. One can always expect an upset by the minnows but last night's was a self-inflicted injury. After having been 102 for no loss, to close the innings on 162 was disappointing. What a waste of the heart warming opening effort!
    A queer bundle of nerves was our Broad! Three chances of dismissal and one to tie the game. Very inept. He made it look like a Gymkhana game. Some forward tactical planning to boot! With so much wet weather around and actual rain on the premises well before the toss, I think a rookie leggie's inclusion over the experienced Swann or even a fasty was a bit thick. I admit I have never seen Eoin Morgan play before but his contribution to this game was forgettable.
    Nevertheless, on to Super-8. Goes without saying Pakistan must be outmanoeuvred. It will be too much to hope the Dutch repeat their last night's exploit on Pakistan too. So it will down to some fine calculations. England getting knocked out will make the cup rather lustreless.

  • Comment number 14.

    I'm with Rupert - this was a less-than-astute performance from England, for sure, but as all the commentators have (rightly) been saying in the build up to this tournament, Twenty20 is a bit of a lottery, and any team can beat any other on a given day. Technique and skill are not usually the deciding factor. I don't think we expected to see such dramatic proof of that in the first game, but that's all it was - proof that Twenty20 is great entertainment, but not great cricket, and that the better side does not always win.

    Broad's last over was excellently *bowled*, btw, it was just the other bits that went astray..!

  • Comment number 15.

    No Rupert, not worked up by the 20/20 game itself, as I meant to convey a degree of sarcasm. Although I would be worried if the 'forget everything you learned about technique' transferred over into the real game of cricket. Its difficult to take seriously a game which has first round standard "Britain's Got Talent" cheerleaders on show as well.

  • Comment number 16.

    Netherlands played brilliantly but yesterday's match has shown that if any team is overconfident or underestimate their opponents then they will be thrown out of the competition.

  • Comment number 17.

    complacency is like a virus and you could see it speading through the england team before your eyes.

    what worries me is that this form of cricket, where batsmen thrash at every delivery, will take these bad habits into the ashes series. the players who will play in that series should be playing real cricket to prepare themselves for the longer version.
    the ECB have organized things so that every cricketer is now steeped in this T20 rubbish.the selectors, for the remaining games, should now choose only players who will not play in the ashes. alternatively, lets hope pakistan solve the problem, by beating england on sunday.

  • Comment number 18.

    I have played weekday evening 20/20 cricket for 4 times longer than the England team and it's a beer match, let's laugh this off, we learned a few months ago that the Flemish invented cricket (go hunt the BBC website) so they deserve this.

  • Comment number 19.

    I don't think England's worst day can possibly come playing a T20 match, any more than at a kwik cricket world cup.

    The defeat is worrying, though, as both winning and losing quickly become habits. The England hierarchy need to decide if they are going to take international T20 seriously, and prepare the centrally-contracted players accordingly. If not, populate the team with county players who have more experience at this form of cricket. End of.

  • Comment number 20.

    Hopeless hyperbole by the author. It was possibly our worst defeat in 20-20. We wont succeed at that form of the game until we change attitudes towards it. But 'worst day for english cricket' - what drivel.

  • Comment number 21.

    An utterly supine, arrogant performance from a strangely selected and weakly led England team. What an embarrassing display in the field. Shameful.

    Why do concentrate so much just upon the Ashes.

    Do we seemingly care as much as other nations due to so many of our players originating from other countries.

    Thoroughly well played to the Dutch though.

  • Comment number 22.

    Typical of english fans, not acknowledging their teams lack of quality without pieterson and flintoff but instead blaming the format they themselves pride on inventing

  • Comment number 23.

    20/20 is to cricket what the Eurovision Song Contest is to music .... so of course we get the traditional NUL POINTS :-) we can agonise over it, or we can treat it as a bit of a laff and get over it.

    Funny how quickly people forget recent successes - cf the optimism after the recent WI warm up game.

    Let's see what happens on Sunday ...

  • Comment number 24.

    Just a quick reply to a couple of recent comments about why I called this "the worst day for English cricket". Just read the whole of the last two paragraphs properly and you will see I don't think it's the worst PERFORMANCE. The dreadful collapse at Sabina Park in the first Test last winter, our abject batting in the Adelaide Test in 06-07 are contenders for that. But this is the first global tournament we are hosting for 10 years, and it's in the format which one day will be bigger than Test cricket. And it's against amateurs who play on matting wickets. In context, this HAS to be a contender for worst DAY for English cricket.

  • Comment number 25.

    I always think results like this are good for the sport (after the initial embarrassment has worn off) - it will increase the profile of the sport in the Netherlands and create more interest - can't be a bad thing!!!

  • Comment number 26.

    Yes, yes Ashes is what we are all talking about it in England when it comes to cricket and what an excitement it is going to be when England recapture it and blah blah blah........but the English Selection Board Should NOT Be So COMPLACENT when picking a team for a world cup!!! England lost the match to Holland because of negative and couldn't care less attitude of the selection board and because of the rabbit in front of headlights attitude of our inexperienced skipper (May be KP would have been better). What is the use of blaming poor Broad for his miss in the last ball!!! England never looked on top of the game - ever; contrary to some of Collingwood's remarks. Any fan would realise this if you had been following T20 (such as IPL). Holland were always in with a chance with their positive attitude and they took it with all 11 pairs of hands on the field. They played their hearts out and wanted to win (to ask why they were actually left out of a tournament that they used play in England). Pakistan are a formidable team and I would be really surprised if England come anywhere close to beating them on Sunday. And if England lose (I am ever the so an optimist) and fail to qualify for the next round, that is the end of world cup coverage in majority of the press. Am I wrong?

  • Comment number 27.

    WHAT A LIBERTY. for a start there are at least 4 players who are not good enough to be playing for England in a T20.... Owais Shah i mean for god sakes he just looks like a poor player.... Eoin Morgan :S:S are the selectrors being serious by picking him to play for England he adds nothing to the team.... Rashid god knows how he got into the team over Swann it is absolutely ridiculas.... and Rob Key if you are going to play him in a T20 play him in a posistion wer he CAN bat.

  • Comment number 28.

    It would appear that we have found yet another form of the game that Rob Key can't play at international level, please can we stop selecting him for England! "Rabbit trapped in headlights" would be the best summation of his international batting career to date.

  • Comment number 29.

    What money a washout tomorrow - one point only and out of the tournament with the age old British excuse of the weather???

  • Comment number 30.

    England lost not because of Broad's errors at the end as he actually put the ball in reasonable places with his last over but because of a safe and boring attitude to their batting.

    The successful T20 teams have hitters, guys that can change a game in 2-3 overs.

    Mascarenhas and Napier should have been in the team - they are both capable of smashing the ball all over the place and with pietersen out, they both should have been in. T20 games are not won by a 4th or 5th bowler, they are won by a 4th or 5th hitter who gets it right on the day.

    Selection was to blame for this defeat and selection that a 13 year old cricket Captain could get right. Pitiful. Again.

  • Comment number 31.

    England are still implementing the 20 year back strategies in ODI and T20's .Rest of the teams are playing innovative and quality cricket and winning at will against lesser opponents.Stone age cricketing tactics wont help in this new era of ODI and T20 cricket.Whatever the strategy be,England are neither having it,nor they have the results.Either way the cricket fans are disappointing watching the same mistakes again and again.

  • Comment number 32.

    i feel sorry for Stuart Broad, he did most things right in that last over, and could have won the game if he'd got the direct hit so i will lay no blame on his shoulders, the blame should rest on the middle order batsmen, most notably Shah and Morgan, who should have scored the extra runs we required, Shah more-so than anyone as he was one of the more senior one day players! Though all credit to the Netherlands!

  • Comment number 33.

    The Netherlands played really well and deserved to win. There wasn't too much wrong with the England team selection - I think it's complacent to assume that Napier or Mascheranas would have been belting boundaries at the end. The Dutch bowling was good at the death and Key, whilst out-of-form at county level, actually had the best strike rate of the England middle order.

    I also find the around the wicket bowling tactic deployed by England excessively negative, so I'm glad the Netherlands won.

  • Comment number 34.

    Whether the right team was picked or the right tactics used is irrelevant. England would have still won the game if they had fielded well and kept their cool.

    In the last two overs they missed two catches and at least 6 run out opportunities. The simple fact of the matter is that whoever the opposition in a 20/20 match if you field so poorly you don't deserve to win.

  • Comment number 35.

    Why is there no comment on how the Dutch performed? Because they did great and caught the English of guard. But no, please do not give credit to the victorious side. We Dutch deserve some credit, don't we?

  • Comment number 36.

    I agree that T20 is MORE of a lottery than other forms of the great game, but if we just look at the pure diagnostics of the match last night, there were still some very, very curious decisions, attitudes and performances. In a world where cricketers manage their own images more than ever before (as it plays through into lucrative IPL bids for them, sponsorships, paid appeareances etc.)these guys know that a poor performance hits their equity - so what the heck was going on? By the way, I used to live in the Netherlands and my 90 year old next door neighbour was on the first Dutch cricket tour of England back in the 50's. He rang me today to rejoice about his teams performance, but he was very frustrated by ours. In Dutch he said to me, "We won the game, but with a lot of help from you."

  • Comment number 37.

    Shocking team selection (pick the right players) and awful approach to the game (make the most of the players you have). Was watching the 1st innings thinking we dont stand a chance against Pakistan, then the Dutch came into bat.... At least they played - they were brilliantly entertaining and gave us the spectacle of win , lose or draw on the last ball. For their approach they deservedly won.

    Well done Holland.

  • Comment number 38.

    It's big news here in Holland, but I doubt it will raise the popularity of the game. Nobody understands the rules, and most people in Holland think it's quite a slow game and boring to watch. Same goes for rugby I think, that will never become popular here as well.
    Still, it's always nice to see your country beat the leading nation in a sport, even if nobody - including me- understands the scoring system :P

  • Comment number 39.

    It was a very exciting game, a real cracker and seeing the Netherlands team charge out on to the pitch at the end of the game was a real high.

    Round the wicket bowling tactic speaks volumes about the attitude to the game. Most other teams want to win by scoring the most runs and limit the other teams by taking wickets as well as keeping it tight. England appear to want to win by not allowing other batsmen to get bat on ball as a first up ploy, pretty much removing the chance of bowled or lbws, before thinking about scoring as many runs as you possibly can. Then hilariously they look annoyed when legitimate wides are called on this 'tactic.'

    Just poor-spirited and they have talented players so what is the story?

  • Comment number 40.

    I live in Holland and yesterday nobody knew anything about cricket, this morning Holland beating England made the news and the journalists here are suddenly experts :-)

  • Comment number 41.

    This must be about the fortieth time I have said our cricketers can't get any worse, and been wrong.
    Overconfidence turns to panic - familiar story.
    We have sneered at the Americans for decades for their arrogance and big heads. But my view is that they are aware of their abilities and the self assurance to be able to do it when IT matters.
    It's the same story with the other sportsmen. Footballers can't take penalties, tennis players seize up in semis or final, RU won the World Cup but then couldn't handle the pressure and went to pieces.
    If you know that you have the skill to put a penalty in the top corner and score you should be able to do it whatever. To me, this is what a professional attitude should bring to a sport; the confidence to use your ability to its maximum potential.
    We have nothing to fear but fear itself. It's the same with pressure.
    Too many players think "what if it goes wrong", when they should be thinking "what will I do when it goes right".
    I didn't intend to write all this psyco-babble, but this has been bothering me for a long time, and I had to keep going.

  • Comment number 42.

    I am not overly keen on T20 Cricket but this is the World Cup and England are hosts, so perhaps they should take it a little seriously? The opening pair did, they set up a winning position, but then "England batting collapse." You can roll out that phrase in any format of cricket.
    The Dutch, 'there to make up the numbers' side should be given much credit for showing a genuine competitive spirit (and no small measure of talent) that was apparently lacking in too many of England's XI. I don't blame Broad, I blame the batsmen (other than Bopara and Wright) who turned a winning start into a precarious lead...then I *congratulate* the Dutch for showing a hunger to chase down that total.

  • Comment number 43.

    I think embarassing rather than worst might be more apt Oliver.

    Many congrats to the Dutch though. Great performance.

  • Comment number 44.

    Awful team selection, complancey (its only Holland), poor captaincy by Colly (and terrible batting by him), Shah, Colly, Morgan all come in before Key (at 6)....he's an opener for gods sake (and out of form). Why was there no Napier or Dimi...all of whom would have probably got us an extra 10 or 15+ runs. I was there last night and was actually quite happy, as best team won and Dutch oplayed some great attacking shots (and 4's and 6's)....which is how you win 20/20 games. If Eng V Pak is washed out on Sunday (and drawn)....England could be out by Tuesday after the Dutch V Pak game....although I will have a bet on a Dutch win!!

  • Comment number 45.

    I am not one to criticise the England team harshly, whatever they do or don't do, but I found this defeat one of the hardest to take, because we started so well and then lost our way. However, if the result stimulates the Dutch game so they become real competitors in the sport, it could be a good thing in the long run: we need some decent European competition. Mind you we will never get it if we keep pinching the Associate teams' best players. This seems very unfair and must hinder their development.

  • Comment number 46.

    You would have hoped Broad would have hit one of the 3 attempts in that last over, but to only concede 7 off the last over is a fair effort, the damage was done way before.

    Not hitting 1 six in T20 when Napier, Mascarenhas and even Swann were sitting on the bench is criminal.

    But a great effort from Holland, who show what you can do when you are positive and just hit the ball over the ropes. I'm not sure this will be the last upset in this tournament, as the joys of T20 are that it only takes one spectatcular innings or one hat trick to swing the game.

  • Comment number 47.

    Sad day for English cricket. Woeful performance from the middle order and poor fielding to add to the mix. But plaudits must be given to the Dutch team, they batted well and deserved the win.

  • Comment number 48.

    Police were called to the Australian team hotel after reports that a certain gentleman was acting strangely. A source said "Mr. Ponting was laughing hysterically and making strange noises." He was taken to The Priory to recover.

  • Comment number 49.

    It's a bit unfair to start slating England as a failure of cricket and now have no chance in the ashes etc, anyone who plays cricket knows that days like these happen. No-one was calling the Aussies a terrible team when they lost a ODI to Bangledesh in a few years ago in the three way tourn we had with the two teams.

    This doesnt mean im defending the performance, it was horrific and the selection commitee need to have a real good look at themselves. Broad has been one of our best performers over the last 12 months so to heavily criticise him for one all or nothing moment in such a high paced hectic game would not be fair.

    Lets just hope the selection is corrected and the team show some bouncebackability, who will remember this game if we go on and win the tourny?

  • Comment number 50.

    It's interesting how in One Day cricket our opening partnership has always been our weakness, and yet the only positive from yesterday was in fact our opening partnership.

  • Comment number 51.

    "The worst day for English cricket", "A sad day for English cricket". Oh goodness gracious me. This isn't "cricket" it's "Twenty20". It's "Happy Clappy cricket", dumbed down "thrash & run". The sort of thing that village cricketers and pub cricketers have been playing for decades in order to try and get a cup competition in as well as the Saturday league matches so you have to have a cut down version of the game that people can play after work. This is "cheerleader cricket" - an American influenced bastardised version of the game and last night's match, whilst sport of some description, is about as relevant to the game of cricket as two boys rolling about in the school yard is to havyweight boxing. On the edge of my seat whilst I watched a bit of it? Not likely - pissing myself laughing more like. Give us a break. Will I watch any more today? Good grief no - it's Saturday and there's some proper cricket being payed on the village green.

  • Comment number 52.

    For those of us that regard the 5-day game (and an Ashes 5-dayer to boot) as the pinnacle of the game, I can't get overly worked up but this hugely incompetent performance as most of this squad won't be there when the proper action starts. However, as far as selection, tactics and captaincy goes it was shambolic. I feel sorry for Broad who showed a little too much panic and naivety when it was there to win. The one beacon of hope though: Wright and Bopara at the top of the order. Admittedly I'm a Sussex man and well-used to seeing Wrighty smash the ball into the balconies behind the Eastern boundary, but still good to see him do it on the bigger stage (Q. Is 20/20 bigger than the County Championship??). Bopara is class through and through.

    Still as with all World Cups - whatever sport - it's always interesting when an underdog has its day. Good for Holland and well-played. Why Colly as Cap'n - Lord least Lords don't! Next we'll be opening an Ashes series in Cardiff.

  • Comment number 53.

    I have read some of the comments here both on the article and on cricket specifically. There is no doubt that we should have not lost to Netherlands. But to call it the worst day in cricket for England or Collingwood made huge selection errors is going a bit too far and a knee-jerk reaction to say the least.

    For one, its twenty20 cricket and the gap between teams is so small in such competitions and any small error can be ruthlessly punished and teams can lose matches in a matter of a few balls. Yes, we scored over 100 runs in eleven overs and still 160 plus is nowhere a bad score. We've seen teams batting badly in IPL and score 130 plus and still defend so well?

    Also, if A Rashid had taken another wicket when those batsmen were slogging, captaincy would have been hailed as a masterstroke!!

    It is indeed disappointing to lose a game no doubt and hurts even more if we don't qualify for the next round. But I don't think we should read too much into their performances and captaincy. This team is still good enough to fight the Aussies com July.

    Any thoughts friends?

  • Comment number 54.

    It was a fascinating game to watch, almost like a horror movie that you can't turn off. And apart from being an England supporter it was great TV.

    But what an odd selection?!?!?! I can only think that the the management were trying to be too clever. We have a team that have been winning well all summer that were completely overlooked. I can understand the inclusion of a couple of big hitters, Wright and Dimi for Strauss & Colly for example but to drop Prior, one of our best performing batsmen for Foster in unbelievable. Not to mention Swann!!!!!! And why bring in an out of form Key???

    I blame the players for their part but the selection was woeful.

  • Comment number 55.

    The one consistent element of English cricket over the last two decades - our ability to produce embarrassment of outlandish proportions, usually at the point where optimism is at its highest. Luckily for us Pakistan are well undercooked and the team should get the chance to progress and make amends.

  • Comment number 56.

    Its no shock that the haters of 2020 cricket come out after such a defeat. People seem to think that no skill or tactic is used in this format, that batsmen just swing at anything and captains just place a ring field on the boundary? I jsut dont understand how you can't admire a player's ability to adpat from ball to ball, playing padle shots from 90mph bowlers or a bowler bowling a slower ball bouncer to leave a batsman looking foolish!
    I'm a lover of test cricket but don't put down this loss just because it's a 2020 match, you need skill, ability and smarts to play this format of the game and England on the day didn't have enough.

  • Comment number 57.

    This loss says a bit about tight corners and the English team's improved 'ruthlessness'. That feels lame even typing it. After those moments of failing to bowl out the Windies in the Carribean to miss three run-out attempts (I won't include the catch as that is never fair on bowlers still in their runthrough) in one over is some going.

  • Comment number 58.

    People reported an earthquake in Wales earlier today, but I reckon they were mistaken: actually the buildings were being shaken by the roars of laughter from Australians in the area.....

    It was a cracking game of cricket; Well played to the dutch; they punched well above their weight. England's main failure was that they were complacent. We've seen it far too many times before; usually England get away with it, but not this time. How they got the selection so wrong is anyone's guess.

    How I am going to face up to my Dutch mates at work now I'll never know ...

  • Comment number 59.

    England thought that Holland were there for the taking. Their team selection showed this. I am a supporter of Rob Key, but he hasn't been able to buy a run for Kent of late. He is also not a 'six-hit' man. So why send him in when big hits were required? Why were Dimi and Napier not even in the side? Why? Why? Why? Because we thought this would be easy. It wasn't..........and England deserved to be on the receiving end of a famous occasion.

  • Comment number 60.


    You are entitled to your view, but the truth is that cricket only has a future as a global professional sport through Twenty20. Test cricket is dying outside the Ashes. 50-over cricket is also in danger of being squeezed out. I actually think Twenty20 is a fantastic examination of all crickering skills, bar stonewall blocking. It's sad that some people still remain so blinkered to its success.

  • Comment number 61.

    The Key selection is the weirdest for me. He was too out of form to play in the warm-up games (which Dimi played in!) but with KP out Key comes straight in? At 6? I would have played Mascheranas, and with the start we made I would have brought him out at 102-1 for some fireworks.

  • Comment number 62.

    Fielders should have been ready for the throw as Dutch were going to run for anything.
    So, why wasn't anyone backing up? Where was the mid-off fielder?

    And why didn't they let them take one run on the last ball and take match to the bowl out?

    This is pretty basic stuff which is expected of even the lower division club players.

    Absolutely shocking...

  • Comment number 63.

    I think 20/20 is fantastic but I wouldn't want it to progress at the cost of Test cricket. Test cricket is the epitome of cricketing skills. Introduction of 20/20 allows countries like Holland, Ireland etc to compete with the top cricketing nations and even beat them.
    Re 50 over cricket, I think it should be phased out and 20/20 should take its place.

  • Comment number 64.

    This may be true, but i hate it. Yes i am now an old fogey (after all i amn in my forties) but I have been a lover of test cricket since i was in my early teens. My first recollection of the game on TV was watching every ball bowled of a match in the series against the West Indies in 1976 (I think!).

    I don't want to knock the skill of the players involved as I know I could never be that talented (even though I play the game regularly at a half decent level). I am just saddended that everything in the world has to be reduced to bite sized morsels because no-one has an attention span more than that of a gnat anymore. From Classic FM's little snippets out of a symphony to any sport coverage that flits from viewpoint to viewpoint because we "get bored" too quickly, everything has to be atention grabbing. I would prefer to sit and listen to Schubert's "Great" C-major symphony rather then an excerpt and yes, I was one of the hardy souls who braved the entire test match at Chester le Street last month.

    Nor am I a just classical music freak - I shall be going to a 2 day rock festival in October and am probably the only parent who asks his teenage daughters to "turn the music UP" but I don't see why we have to have disco dancing cheerleaders and loud music to distract us from what is going on on the pitch.

    I'm sorry but my belief is that intelligence is being leached out of society and this is simply evidenced by the growth of "nothing resembling reality" TV and Twenty20. God help us all!

  • Comment number 65.

    This selection can only be down to complacency. Cannot understand why Sidebottom is even in the squad. He is temprementally unsuited to this type of cricket. Bowlers are always going to get clouted and he can't accept that, and starts to throw his dummy out of the pram and loses everything.

    Why on earth would you leave Swann out. He's been our best containing bowler for the last year.

    The Dutch restricted much of our scoring by concentrating on yorker length on wicket bowling. Broad seems incapable of bowling this length and is always open to the slog.

  • Comment number 66.

    Oliver and everybody else, how can you overlook Rob Key's credentials to an england team like this in 20/20 cricket? He has captained Kent to the last two consecutive 20/20 finals winning one, and losing narrowly the other, playing an instrumental role in both those, this isn't Collingwoods best form of cricket and he even said previously he didnt like captaining england if im correct, if you want a captain for england who will do the job in this form of cricket and has proven he can captain teams well in 20/20, i don't think that there is a better captain out there with as good a credentials as Rob Key, he is a great top of the order batsman, rather than where he was stupidly brought in yesterday, whilst i also believe players such as Napier and Maschernas should be in the team.

  • Comment number 67.


    Why couldnt next game be put back to say 1600 start and make NZ v Scotland a full 20 20, is there no flexibility in rules to allow this??

  • Comment number 68.

    The ultimate dream come true.
    "Holland on lumps" defeated the great England in the home of cricket.

    Harry de Leeuw

  • Comment number 69.

    'Test cricket is dying outside the Ashes. 50-over cricket is also in danger of being squeezed out.'

    Oliver, THAT'S the really sad thing, i.e that the Twenty20 can even potentially squeeze out 50 overs one-day cricket (to which it bears precious little relation) Perhaps I'm in the same 'Old Fogey' class as sandhoe. I'm not however, against limited overs cricket, far from it. I'm not even denying that there is at least some skill and judgement involved. I wouldn't dare suggest that 'anyone can play it'. My main concern is what I see as the chronic over-reaction to a defeat in a style of cricket that's garnered towards the 'limited attention span' society we sadly live in today.

  • Comment number 70.

    I have been waiting for this day... surely one must appreciate the effort by my countrymen - the Dutch have proved themselves these past years in the ICC and the World Cup - this was bound to happen
    Tom from Amsterdam

  • Comment number 71.

    Considering we were 100-0 afetr 10, 162 is a pretty crap score, but lets not forget that it would have been too much for most lower ranked teams. Credit to the netherlands, they never lost their nerve while losing wickets.

    Stuart Broad will be having day-glo orange nightmares for years to come.

  • Comment number 72.

    Re 67: I think the issue is that there are 3 games to fit in, and if you allow the first one to be delayed, what happens if the second one has bad weather too?

  • Comment number 73.

    'Why is there no comment on how the Dutch performed? Because they did great and caught the English of guard. But no, please do not give credit to the victorious side. We Dutch deserve some credit, don't we?'

    Yes! Whatever I or sandhoe or anyone else like-minded thinks about this form of cricket, having watched the entire match, the Dutch deserved their win on the day.

  • Comment number 74.

    Excellent result.

    And very salutary and healing on a societal level.

    Utter humiliation and degradation is, one senses, GOOD for the English. It reminds them that the Days of the Empire are now very far away indeed, and helps them adjust to their modern-day status as a plucky tailender in the Batting-order of Nations.

    Not much pluck on display in the cricket though.

    Good to see Scotland preserving britain's pride with a fine attacking batting display against New Zealand. If only the English had it in them to show such guts and enterprise!

  • Comment number 75.

    " At 10:35am on 06 Jun 2009, chelsea_spirit wrote:

    Typical of english fans, not acknowledging their teams lack of quality without pieterson and flintoff but instead blaming the format they themselves pride on inventing"

    If you'd bothered to read the posts you'll see there are numerous people questioning team selection, drive, ambition, quality and arrogance. There are also some (fewer) critisising the format itself.

    It strikes me that you're one of those people who just likes to post to critisise whatever anybody else says, whether they've actually said it or not.

  • Comment number 76.

    To be honest the batting wasn't that terrible to start with but at the death, when you feel the better teams accelerate, England really struggled. The fact is you have to hit boundries in this form of cricket. No sixes in an innings speaks volumes. Also I can't believe that Stuart Broads huge mistakes go basically un-noticed in the whole of this article. He had three, maybe 4, opportunities to take wickets in his last over and totally fluffed every single one. Would an ozzy make those mistakes?

  • Comment number 77.

    So many people are now writing England off for the Ashes on the basis of a below-average Twenty20 performance - a bit like comparing the 100m with the marathon.

    The Netherlands played very well and beat a lacklustre England side. Yet again we see that Colly is a good lieutentant but not a general, and as for Shah and Key - they should be nowhere near an England team in any format of the game.

    Fortunately, Broad is one of our new generation (along with the likes of Bopora) and will learn from his mistakes yesterday. I'm not "looking for positives", merely have no problem in accepting that our selection was off and The Netherlands had a blinder.

    As for the death of Test cricket, I assume that the grounds will be empty this summer and there will be no-one offering me £500 for my ticket again...?

  • Comment number 78.

    Dutchfinest - sorry to burst your bubble. England are nowhere near being the leading nation in cricket. They are near the bottom of the pack and are probably just a notch or two higher than the Dutch team that defeated them

  • Comment number 79.

    kaypee01 wrote:

    "England are nowhere near being the leading nation in cricket. They are near the bottom of the pack and are probably just a notch or two higher than the Dutch team that defeated them"


    "Higher"? :D

  • Comment number 80.

    Happy Clappy Cricket. Twenty20, "that's not cricket". Fact still remains England lost. And lost to the better side. Had they beaten the Aussies, things would be different.
    Hopefully my visit to Trent Bridge for the ODI's v. Australia are as exciting as yesterdays World Cup Opener. This Orange fan will be cheering England though.

  • Comment number 81.

    I thought we were in trouble when Collingwood was making such confident noises in the build up!

    In a way it's a good thing, because even the merest gram of complacency is going to cost us against the Aussies so a surprise kicking like this one can help out there.

  • Comment number 82.

    I'm a fan of Adil Rashid, but I could not understand his selection for the 20/20 squad. He doesn't usually get into the Yorkshire side in this (IMO debased) form of the game, Wainright being preferred as the better containing bowler and better slogger. As it happens he didn't do badly in this game, though Swan MAY have done better. My concern is that Rashid is very young for a leggie, and being taken to pieces by seasoned international big hitters will do nothing for his confidence.

    I don't blame Broad for the defeat, and his bowling in the final over was very competent (ie negative, which is what 20/20 is all about for the bowlers), but his fielding was attrocious. He dropped a relatively straightforward catch, missed an easy runout by dropping the ball before breaking the wicket, and then missed the stumps from 7 or 8 yards - all in that last over. In the end, in spite of the deficiencies of the batting after the openers had done so well, it was England's fielding (not just Broad's) that lost them the game.

  • Comment number 83.

    The worst day for English cricket, was the day Twenty20 was invented. Hope they go out early to concentrate on the Ashes.

  • Comment number 84.

    Oliver, your post at #60 is quite alarming.
    Why exactly does cricket need to become a "global sport."?
    The only truly successful global sport is football.
    The 50 over ODI game is fine, with teams such as Afghanistan, UAE, Canada, Bermuda etc. all emerging as hopefuls for a World Cup berth (indeed some have already made that leap.) Do Americans care that nobody in Europe gives a toss about not having an international baseball team? Do you honestly believe that the Chinese will be watching this T20 tournament and thinking "we must conquer this."? Are the Tour de France organisers worrying that no cyclists from Mali will be involved?
    I also agree with the poster bemoaning the decision to make NZ-Scotland a seven over aside match. That is making the barely credible into totally farcical. I very much doubt that in SA 2010 FIFA will say "OK guys, weather is bad so just 25 minutes instead of the usual 90"

  • Comment number 85.

    The omission of Mascarenhas was a glaring mistake. England weren't able to hit a single six in their entire innings which showed a lack of big-hitters in the team. The dutch innings was a revelation! They had no problem going for the big boundaries and that's where England really lost it (not to mention some farcical fielding in the final over).

    As for the opening ceremony - what a shambles! No fireworks, no performances, and just a couple of speeches to signal the start of a major international tournament (shades of the farcical opening of the 1999 world cup - again at Lords). Perhaps the ECB/ICC should consider hiring the services of Lalit Modi for these types of things? We may not like everything he does but you can't deny that the man knows how to put on an impressive show!

  • Comment number 86.

    The people in charge have to be held to account for this disgraceful result. Collingwood is not a good captain. Why select a special side for 20 20 and hit no sixes it doesn't make sense. The idiots running english cricket keep their job year after year failure after failure - The occasional decent performance justifying their salaries. Sorry chaps not good enough - Sort it out from the top down.

  • Comment number 87.

    A big smile from a Holland (ánd England !) fan. Most people in Holland (better: the Netherlands) do not even know what cricket is, and they completely do NOT comprehend the game. We have only a small competition, with a few thousand players over 17 million inhabitants. How could this happen ? I wish England all the best for the forthcoming tournaments and watch the Dutch football side tonight as they will qualify for South Africa. Maybe Dutch cricket will ever be at that level. Thén England really has to worry.....

    Ferry Ballhaus, The Hague, The Netherlands

  • Comment number 88.

    Stuart Broad's final over was a disaster. Missing one chance is ok, not 4 chances. England has lost the competitive edge or is it the killer instinct!!

  • Comment number 89.

    Might be the worst day ever for English cricket? No. This is THE worst result ever. England lost. At Lords. In a proper international match. To Holland!! How much worse does it have to get before it becomes THE worst? I cannot believe that anyone can be so complacent as to say: "Well, it's only T20. It doesn't really matter." It's an England cricket match - they all matter. Whatever form of the game surely supposedly the finest players in England should beat the Netherlands? Would Australia, South Africa or India even come close to losing to the Dutch, spirited as they were? No. Even the West Indies would beat them. I am in my 40s and so I have seen plenty of England disasters in the past. Nothing compares to this. Tomorrow, I should be playing club cricket. I will have to sneak out of the house with my cricket gear hidden because I am ashamed of being an Englishman associated with this game. Thank you, Mr Collingwood et al, for humiliating us. However it much this debacle "hurts" you, it's nothing to what we fans are suffering.

  • Comment number 90.

    For heaven's sake it's not a proper cricket match, it's just a 20 over slog - anybody can beat anybody with a bit of luck and good performances from just a couple of batsmen - get over it, it's not really that important!!!
    And the 'amateurs' had 4 players with good county/state cricket experience, 3 of whom with more success than our Mr Morgan has enjoyed at the moment I may suggest.........

  • Comment number 91.

    Everyone who thinks test cricket is dying out of the ashes is just plain wrong!

    Yes, the attendance in a non ashes test match maybe less, in fact it might be as low as a few hundred people but the amount of following these matches have over the internet is huge. There will be millions following the match over the internet.

    These days people cant find time to go and watch 5-day test cricket on the ground. That doesnt mean that they do not like test cricket and its popularity is going down. These people who will not be able to make it to the ground and many more follow the match online.

    People understimate the internet/TV numbers all the time.

  • Comment number 92.

    Sorry for my bad english there, but you know what I mean :-)

  • Comment number 93.

    The most ridiculous article I ve ever read yes England were poor and the selection was bad and collingwood is not captain material but to suggest hope of winning the ashes is forlorn is stupid. One game of tip and run means nothing however if you do think that what about a poor West Indies side(that england have dominated) battering Australia. I suppose with your logic it must seem farcical that Australia have any chance of beating England

  • Comment number 94.

    Greta performance from the Dutch and sitting at Lords watching painfully obvious the difference and success of how to play this game:
    Hit the ball, hard and high through the V and over cow corner. All the successful batsmen did this and all the dibs around the corner and lovely pushes down the ground for a single will never conquer. We have been plyaing this game for five years now - how on earth do the coaches not know this.
    As usual the selectors and that brilliant man Miller have got everything wrong by giving Collingwood a young leggie who does not have enough control of length and dibby push them for one batsment Shah, Key and Morgan - none of them should begin to be present for a twenty20 team - we all know this so why Miller and how does he get his job in the first place

  • Comment number 95.

    Mascarenhas opened the bowling in the IPL to great effect-so his omission here was a terrible decision. As was the exclusion of Swann.
    Still I think the T20 format is more of a level playing field for all teams-so I would not be surprised if we see more shocks.

    Having see the Aussie attack been taken apart(my first sighting of Johnson)-it is very clear that not having a spinner could cost them dearly. If England get their act together-the Ashes are there for the taking.

  • Comment number 96.

    Just like to say that post 64 is fantastic and pretty much sums up the frustrations of a lot of people, in life as well as cricket.

  • Comment number 97.

    I would like to point out that England have always blown there own trumpet and like to hype things up beyond there own capabilities and that risks them trying to play up to a reputation which is far too good for their own qualities, which always faulter when such pressure situation comes their way,
    Now I would like to point out that England won't get a walk in the park against Pakistan so I think they should try and hope against hope that the MINOS Neitherlands beat Pakistan to give England some hope of going through to the super eights....

  • Comment number 98.

    97 comments and not one has noted that James Anderson took three wickets in four overs. At least one team member did not let us down.....

  • Comment number 99.

    Trust the English sense of humour to come out in our comedy cricket when the eyes of the world are watching! In our own style we have put the tournament on the map, and matched the IPL for drama straight off.
    The morning after the night before, we have seen Chris Gayle smash the Aussies to all parts. The form line shows that England have beaten the Windies all ends up, as recently as last Wednesday. Any team can have their day in this form of the game. Don't write England off yet. They couldn't possible be that bad again.

  • Comment number 100.

    I can't believe everyone is saying this is Englands worst defeat in history. You must be joking? Has anyone heard of Australia 5-0 England. Please everyone get a grip. Twenty/20 cricket is not important. It is such a short version of the proper game of test cricket and you don't need tactics or anything of importance in twenty/20. Test cricket is a much harder form of the game and it is much superior to twenty/20. This years Ashes test series is what is important this year and I don't care what happens to England in the Twenty/20.


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