England v West Indies, 1st ODI, West End June 16, 2012

Bell's comeback hundred sets up comfortable victory


England 288 for 6 (Bell 126) beat West Indies 172 (Smith 56, Bresnan 4-34) by 114 runs (D/L method)
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

Ian Bell won the battle of the replacement openers in the first one-day international as he marked his return to England's 50-over side with his second ODI hundred - nearly five years after his previous one - to earn the home side an early series advantage with a 114-run victory. Initially West Indies threatened in the chase with Dwayne Smith filling the void left by Chris Gayle's late injury but England's quicks burst through either side of a rain delay.

In some neat symmetry this was the same ground (albeit with a different name) where Bell made his only other ODI hundred - against India in 2007 - and this time he reached three figures from a lively 95 balls to suggest that the hole left by Kevin Pietersen's retirement will not be as vast as some had envisaged. A day after suffering a suspected fractured jaw, and needing 10 stitches after being hit in the nets, there was barely a false shot in the innings until he top-edged a slower ball from Dwayne Bravo when level with his career best having played gracefully to show, yet again, that one-day cricket is not all about brute force.

The opening partnership did not flourish with Alastair Cook was caught behind third ball against Ravi Rampaul but Bell ensured that the team's recent run of ODI hundreds continued; this was the fifth match in a row that one of the openers had reached three figures after the back-to-back efforts of Cook and Pietersen against Pakistan in the UAE.

England's final total of 288 for 6 was less than they may have hoped for after 30 overs when they were 163 for 3, but was still the second highest score batting first at this venue - and England's highest - after Craig Kieswetter produced some late boundaries along with Stuart Broad in a useful 43-run stand off 34 balls.

After the early loss of Lendl Simmons, Smith's innings included three boundaries in four deliveries against Steven Finn, the second of which was a pick-up over deep square-leg, and went past fifty off 38 balls. Longevity, though, has never been Smith's strength and and aiming another shot through the legs side got an edge off Bresnan. In one sense he had done his job, but it was also a missed opportunity to build a long innings. Bresnan struck again in his next over when he won an lbw against Denesh Ramdin - batting at No. 3 after Darren Bravo picked up a groin injury in the field - after the wicketkeeper had lurched to 22.

West Indies continued to play their shots with both Marlon Samuels and Dwayne Bravo collecting early boundaries but as rain started to fall Finn struck in the first over of his second spell by squaring up Bravo with a full delivery. In that one moment West Indies went from being ahead of the D/L par score to being behind it. The margin became even greater when Eoin Morgan plucked out Kieran Pollard's fierce cut at backward point. When Samuels clipped James Anderson to midwicket shortly after an hour's delay for rain, West Indies' last hope had gone. In total they lost 9 for 77 in 18 overs.

The foundation of England's total was laid by a second-wicket stand of 108 between Bell and Jonathan Trott, Warwickshire team-mates who used their understanding well to run hard between the wickets against some lacklustre West Indian fielding. The boundaries had been pushed right to edge of the playing area in anticipation of West Indies' power-packed batting order.

After the early loss of Cook, Bell gave England momentum when he took 18 off Andre Russell's third over which began with a sublime straight six and continued with three further boundaries around the ground. Pietersen, who tweeted support to his former team-mates during the day, could not have done it any better.

Bell had a nervous moment on 23 when Rampaul was convinced he had found the outside edge but umpire Richard Kettleborough said not out. Hot Spot did not show anything on replay although Snicko suggested at a thin edge. Two balls later Bell responded with a rasping square cut as Rampaul dropped short and wide.

Bell's timing and placement was effortless, but the going was tougher for Trott who had collected an early boundary through midwicket but had to wait until the 16th over for his second when Bravo drifted into the pads. As in the final Test, Sunil Narine did not overly trouble the top order - at one stage being reverse swept by Trott - but did break the partnership when Trott was caught behind cutting.

It was spin (or rather slow bowling) that continued to keep West Indies in touch when Ravi Bopara edged a cut against Samuels to end his first international innings of the season following injury. Samuels also claimed the important wicket of Morgan who chopped into his stumps after a promising start to his innings and a stand of 51 in eight overs with Bell. After a debilitating winter in all formats and an IPL spent warming the bench Morgan looked in decent form and with a far less pronounced squat at the crease than on his previous appearance. After the success of Bell, significant runs for Bopara and Morgan are the next boxes England will be looking to tick.

Andrew McGlashan is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • John on June 19, 2012, 10:06 GMT

    @lyl67 on (June 19 2012, 08:15 AM GMT) - Yes we know what you were saying but the reason DRS and technology was implimented was to get rid of the clear decisions which the umpire gets wrong and not to overrule the umpires completely. That is why if a bowling side appeals and it is only clipping the stumps after the umpire gives it N/O then it is not a clear error by the umpire as there is still doubt. That is why I agree with the bowling side not losing a review if the ball is clipping because they are technically correct

  • Sharon on June 19, 2012, 8:53 GMT

    @g.narsimha on (June 19 2012, 01:16 AM GMT) - you seem to be of opinion that cricket match does not count unless it is played in India. Also you have opinion that any India defeat in any other part of the world somehow does not count. All this is very odd. All cricket game count the same - whether you play in India or anywhere. The excuse; England didn't deserve to beat India 9-0 in all format last Summer because the game were not played in India, is not in fact an excuse at all. Time to man up and admit that ALL game of cricket count, and the away defeat count as well. Truth is - India hardly won any series away in any format in last 3 year. Mostly they lose.

  • Dominic on June 19, 2012, 8:15 GMT

    In my comments yesterday, I meant that if the ball is just glancing the top of the stumps or glancing the leg stumps on a review all batsmen should be given out or not not out by the television umpire and not sent back to the on field original decision, there will be no grey areas and the DRS system has shown to be more correct than any umpire. Please sort this out because some batsmen are given out, others are given not out. This is not cricket. A batsman can go on to score a hundred whilst the other could be out for a naught, this cannot be right.

  • John on June 19, 2012, 8:15 GMT

    @g.narsimha -.Quite hard to make sense of your comms but one thing you clearly say is Eng were thrashed by SL in the 1st test - 75 runs.The closest India got to either Eng or Aus was 122 runs vs Aus. We were bad in UAE and SL in tests granted but bar the 1st test in UAE all 4 we lost were competitive and the 2nd SL test we won by 8 wkts which I'd say is a bigger margin than 75 runs so whichever way you look at it P5/LD/W1 surely betters P8/L8/W0 not to even go there with the margins of defeat. Oh and even inc our woeful India 5-0 ODI series our last 13 ODI/T20 overseas stats reads P13 W7/L6 which aint all that bad for a team who can only play at home. We were awful in ODIs in Ind and tests in UAE and SL (despite drawing the latter) so no need to keep reminding us and no need for us to keep reminding you of Indias recent record - agreed?

  • narsimha on June 19, 2012, 1:16 GMT

    5WOMBATS - U R all over here again making un desirable coments on INDIA IN ONE OF U R ABOVE COMENTS,'when ENG lose..... it doesnt happen so often as it does to one particular country THAT PARTICULAR COUNTRY OBIOUSLY I AM SURE INDIA' , than my simple quastion baring those 2 loses in ENG, AUS i can u tell me where did we lost all games, baring those home heroics when did u r great team beat us , u r also equally worse traveller when u comes to our part of the world even though u r yawning on present team but it also as recently proved they are not defferent from erlier teams when in ASIA , 4 LOSES ATA TROAT still yawning, great in an other post u refered our ASIA cup lose my dear we beat 2 top teams sl, pak had we been in final definatly it would have been india but no ifs & buts in cricket we lost to bd , see SL which lost all matches thrashed u in first test , now thrashed pak in odis , thats the home adventage as u enjoyed while winning against us in decads .

  • John on June 19, 2012, 1:09 GMT

    @lyl67 on (June 18 2012, 16:14 PM GMT), like many, I also think that it would be a good idea if a review was not lost when the decision is "umpire's call" but the rest of your suggestion I'm not so sure about. Remember that what ball-tracking shows up to where the ball hit the pad actually happened but the path between the pad and the stumps is not real. It never actually happened so the "umpire's call" rule is an admission that, while ball-tracking does a good job of predicting the path of the ball, we can never be 100% certain that what it predicts is what would have happened. It has been decided that, in such cases, the evidence to overrule the on-field umpire cannot be considered conclusive. They have to draw the line somewhere and you cannot please all of the people all of the time. I'm happy enough with the way things are, apart from the loss of a review in those circumstances.

  • Martin on June 18, 2012, 22:41 GMT

    @maddy20. Great logic. But when exactly did India win anything away? It's so long ago that nobody can remember. Here's what the muddle headed wombats remember; @maddy20 busy telling us that England got whitewashed by Australia in 2006 and how humiliating that was. India got whitewashed by Australia AND England in short order in 2011/12. So @maddy20 - how humiliating is that? Or have you forgotten already?

  • John on June 18, 2012, 19:55 GMT

    @lyl67 on (June 18 2012, 16:14 PM GMT) I see where you're coming from. Personally I'm quite happy that marginal decs stay with the umpire but I do believe that a bowling side should not lose a review when the ball is clipping the stumps.

  • Martin on June 18, 2012, 19:16 GMT

    @jmchilhinney. That's right. According to some when England win it's because they were somehow advantaged by rain (not sure how that's possible, but there you go). Or it was because the umpires were biased to England (as if...). Or it was because they cheated because there was grass on the pitch. Etc, etc, etc. yawn. Worst of all when England win its because they are "home lions" (even though they win series in all formats all around the world). But when England lose - which doesn't happen to England as often as it does to one particular country, the response is "ha ha ha" just shows how rubbish England are. Some people need to look harder at the recent results of their own country. It's all getting a bit tedious really.

  • Michael on June 18, 2012, 18:23 GMT

    @randyoz-it's bad news I am afraid(for you). Swann( that object of your derision) vs Warne. Yes you might blink but here are the Test stats for the great Shane Warne, vs 'sad punk' Swann, whom you deem so low. Warne: Tests 145, Inns275,Wkts 708@25.41,E 2.65,S/R 57.4, 10w 10,5w 37. Swann: Tests 44, Inns 80,Wkts 188@28.57, E 2.97,S/R 57.7, 10w 2,5w 13. Given that Warne is widely and officially regarded in the top 5 of ALL cricketers to have played the game, Swanny does not do a bad turn for a Pom. And he is a long way from finished even though the occasional long hop leaves his hand. I rest my case.

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