England finish strongly

The 14-a-side warm-up match between New South Wales and England ended in an expected draw as the English bowlers found some much needed form.

England resumed their first innings at 245-4, with Pietersen and Flintoff set at the crease. Both batsmen were in their stride quickly as the pair took their stand to 116 runs from 165 balls before Flintoff was dismissed by Glenn McGrath for a well made 62. The dynamic all-rounder found some form with the bat after a lean run with the bat following a forced lay-off from the game because of injury.

Meanwhile Pietersen set up picking up where he left off on the previous day. Resuming on 80, Pietersen soon notched up a hundred, taking only 147 balls to reach three figures. The aggressive right-hander was eventually dismissed for 122 by Nathan Bracken.

After the set pair was dismissed, there was little resistance from the remainder of the batting lineup. Paul Collingwood did his chances of selection a disservice as he was removed by Hauritz for only five while wicket-keeper Geraint Jones could only contribute 13 before he was bowled by Glenn McGrath. The bowlers contributed little with England eventually falling five runs short of New South Wales’ total to be dismissed for 349.

England began their second bowling effort strongly, picking up a couple of quick wickets either side of the luncheon interval. Phil Jaques didn’t live up to his previous two innings against England, being run out by Sajid Mahmood for four in the first over of the innings. Immediately following the break, Ed Cowan was caught behind off the bowling of Hoggard for eight and New South Wales were 18-2.

However, Simon Katich and Michael Clarke steadied the innings with both batsmen notching up half-centuries. The pair batted through to the tea break, but Katich was forced to retire hurt during the break. This proved to be a turning point for the English bowlers as they suddenly found wickets tumbling. First to go was O’Brien, who replaced Katich, for two after Anderson managed to get the edge. Anderson clean bowled Smith the very next ball, and New South Wales were suddenly four, effectively five with the absence of Katich, wickets down with almost a session to play.

Henriques managed to avoid the hat-trick, but didn’t last long as Anderson trapped the youngster LBW for 12. Clarke was gone soon after with Giles managing to breach his defences to bowl him for a fluent 68. However, with time quickly running out, Hauritz and Casson were able to keep the English bowlers out and the match ended in a draw with New South Wales finishing on 194-6.

New South Wales 355-9
Phil Jaques 107, Simon Katich 68, Michael Clarke 50
Steve Harmison 3-95, James Anderson 2-45, Ashley Giles 2-46

England 349
Kevin Pietersen 122, Andrew Flintoff 62, Alistair Cook 59, Andrew Strauss 50
Stuart Clark 3-50, Brett Lee 2-57

New South Wales 194-6
Michael Clarke 68, Simon Katich 55
James Anderson 3-40

Match Drawn.

Leave a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear until they have been approved

More articles by Arunava Das