England lose by two runs

England haven’t been playing upto their potential in this year’s cricket world cup, but they are getting better as we head deeper into the tournament. The effort, unfortunately for Duncan Fletcher and his boys was not enough to get them past Sri Lanka.

The bowlers did an excellent job, with Mahmood picking up 4 and Flintoff 3. Sri Lanka were 160/2 at one stage, and they only managed to add 75 runs to that total.

Joyce and Vaughan fell cheaply, and Bell ate up quite a few deliveries. There was a stage between the 20th and 30th overs when England scored at just close to 3 an over, and that I believe, proved to be their undoing.

They lost Pietersen, Collingwood and Flintoff quickly, and were staring down the barrel when Paul Nixon and Ravinder Bopara came to their rescue.

Murali was mean in his first 8 overs, but went for a few in his last two. I don’t think manyEnglishmen will ever forget Paul Nixon’s reverse sweep for six. From needing close to 10 an over in the last six overs, England came to needing 3 from one delivery.Fernando stopped as he was about to deliver, unsettling Bopara, and the next ball he bowled crashed through Bopara’s stumps. You couldn’t blame Bopara for trying to heave it over midoff’s head, as there was no long off. It was a case of ‘you miss, I hit’ and Fernando emerged victorious yesterday at North Sound.

England were good, but not good enough. They will need to raise their game, for the next one is against the Australians, and defeat will almost certainly condemn them to a super eight exit


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