|ODI England Vs Pakistan
|Things could hardly have
started better for Michael Vaughan's debut as England's one-day
captain. He won the toss, elected to bat on a dry wicket and the
scoreboard ticked along merrily for quite some time.
It looked like the Pakistan bowlers would be on the receiving end
of some considerable stick, but one by one our batsmen got in and
just as quickly got out. After only a few overs it became clear
| ball was quickly getting
softer and the wicket lower so anything around 230 would have been
more than acceptable.
Unfortunately England lost their way in the middle of the order
and our inexperience showed through a few rash shots. Pakistan bowled
well and kept up the pressure and but for an excellent and controlled
knock by Andrew Flintoff would have skittled us for far fewer than
the 204 we eventually managed.
It was disappointing that none of the lads who got in went on to
have a big knock while the younger lads hopefully will have learnt
from the experience because in international cricket you have to
learn quickly or be exposed.
After Paksitan got off to a good start, we bowled well and fielded
magnificently led by the captain and a sensational run out. By the
three-quarter mark we were back in it, in no small part due to the
excellent bowling of Flintoff in his comeback game.
James Anderson also struck in his second spell and took three wickets
at a time when it is never easy, but Pakistan held on for a two-wicket
The atmosphere at Old Trafford was unbelievable and it was like
being in Lahore or Karachi - a really good day out although our
total did not prove an insurmountable one for Pakistan's new side.
It will not get easier for England because the Rawalpindi Express
in the shape of Shaoib is due to return to the side and we desperately
need to win at The Oval this weekend.