England v Pakistan, 1st ODI, Cardiff August 31, 2006

We believe we can beat Pakistan - Bell

Cricinfo staff



Ian Bell ranked his 88 as his best innings in one-day cricket © Getty Images

Though the series opener at Sophia Gardens was washed out, Ian Bell believes England are capable of defeating Pakistan in the five-match contest. Bell's 88 - which he termed his best one-day innings - was the sole bright spot out of England's dismal 202, and he was determined to cement his place during a busy season.

"I'm not too sure there's relief, we were pretty positive about going out there and getting a few wickets," Bell told reporters. "It's nice to stop the losses but it's not the way we wanted to stop the defeats. We'll be excited to get to Lord's as we believe we can beat Pakistan in this series."

With a revised target of 159 from 32 overs, Pakistan were 46 for 1 after seven overs before heavy rain forced the umpires to call the match off. Discounting a win over Ireland, a non-Test side, England have lost eight consecutive one-day internationals.

Bell ranked his 88 as his best effort in ODIs as he continued his recent Test form. "I tried to carry over my form from the Test matches [in which he scored three back-to-back hundreds]," he said. "I also felt pretty good in the nets and just wanted to carry on. That was the best I've played in one-day cricket for England. It was just the fact that I looked to be really positive. Number three is where I normally bat for Warwickshire, I'm happiest at three in one-day cricket. It gives me that opportunity to get myself in and gradually score quicker and quicker."

Following October's Champions Trophy in India, England will participate in the VB Series in Australia before the World Cup in March.