England v India, World T20 2012, Group A, Colombo

Clueless batting, ice-cool catching

Plays of the day from the Group A match between India and England in Colombo

David Hopps in Colombo

September 23, 2012

Comments: 24 | Text size: A | A

Eoin Morgan loses his middle stump, England v India, World Twenty20, Group A, Colombo
Eoin Morgan's failed cut to get bowled was a candidate for the most awful shot of the day, but Craig Kieswetter took the honours © Getty Images
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Series/Tournaments: ICC World Twenty20
Teams: England | India

Misinformation of the day (1)

All suggestions that England's frailties against spin have been exaggerated were exposed by a calamitous batting display against Harbhajan Singh and Piyush Chawla. It is difficult to decide which shot was the most awful. Eoin Morgan, bowled when he tried to cut a quicker one, felt like déjà vu; Jonny Bairstow's slog at Chawla when he misread a googly; Jos Buttler's back away… but as unfair as it seems to plump for the top-scorer, Craig Kieswetter's guide off Chawla's leg-break to slip takes some beating.

Misinformation of the day (2)

MS Dhoni's media briefing about the possible make-up of India's side turned out to be entirely false. Although he did not state it explicitly, any sensible interpretation was that India were leaning towards playing Zaheer Khan in a four-strong attack. The upshot was that Zaheer was omitted from a five-strong attack. Make of that what you will.

Comeback of the day

Harbhajan Singh last played for India at Trent Bridge in July last year. His rehabilitation since has even included a spell with Essex in the County Championship - and few Indian players in demand are given the licence to do that. His analysis of 4 for 12 was quite a return. England's deficiencies have to be taken into account but as the pitches wear it is possible that he and R Ashwin could become the combination India need.

Double act of the day

Alex Hales went down on the scorecard as the catcher of Dhoni at deep midwicket, but it was merely the finishing touch to an ice-cool piece of athleticism from Buttler, who caught a skier at long-on and, realising he was heading over the boundary, coolly tossed the ball into the air for Hales to jog up and complete the catch. It was Buttler's nonchalance under pressure that made it so exceptional.

Oddity of the day

Even in the frantic world of Twenty20, there is still time for humour. When Stuart Broad rushed down the pitch to prevent Dhoni from taking a leg-bye, he found that the ball was lodged in Dhoni's pad. It was a dead ball, but Broad was acting on instinct not the MCC Laws. Quick as a flash he grabbed the ball from Dhoni's pad and swung round to try to throw out Rohit Sharma at the non-striker's end, but missed. Cue much laughter all round at the absurdity of it all.

David Hopps is the UK editor of ESPNcricinfo

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Posted by phoenixsteve on (September 26, 2012, 4:34 GMT)

Spot on - England were clueless. Fortunately it didn't matter in the grand scheme of things but that doesn't make it all OK? The balance of the side was all wrong and I hope England learn from this. We've (England) got 3 very good spinners and in any case we're unlikely to see India again in this world cup. Fortunately Australia, Pakistan and South Africa should see that India exit from the world cup? England however have a better prospect of being in the final with NZ, WI and SL to overcome. Work needs to be done and techniques need to be developed and it all starts here! Despite ramblings to contrary England should do well in India but that's fayre for another feast! COME ON ENGLAND!!! ( and I really mean "come on")

Posted by   on (September 25, 2012, 22:37 GMT)

@Al Minidodo Warming, You are so funny and your thoughts as well!!!

Posted by   on (September 25, 2012, 20:04 GMT)

@ Chithirai Rajan Ramapandi: What is AP ? Not Associated Press... I guess.

Posted by   on (September 25, 2012, 8:47 GMT)

@Silver Angels, There is a big mistake from the ICC as in the schedule of this world cup.... India and South Africa has topped the group with four points each and got the ranking of A1 and C1 but the super eight matches of both the teams has been scheduled as per A2 and C2, this is a very big mistake and they have to re- correct it.

Posted by   on (September 24, 2012, 20:19 GMT)

@Al Minidodo Warming, How do you know that 'BalajiBalaji' is from Chennai.. 'Balaji' is very common in AP too. I agree with 'BalajiBalaji'. Harbhajan needs to be seen in coming matches with better opponents. For me, English players gifted their wickets to Harbhajan. If he performs well in the next matches, 2 of the best spinners can play for India regardless of variety after this WC. I don't see Harbhajan replacing Ashwin soon unless later performs very poorly. This is the same case with Irfan Pathan. He performed well in conditions where there is some swing. We need to see how he performs against Pak in India in December this year...

Posted by xylo on (September 24, 2012, 17:19 GMT)

I don't see the surprise in Zaheer being left out for this match. This match was more about who could be his partner. I am afraid Balaji lost, and Dinda might be preferred on less helpful surfaces to partner Zaheer, and Irfan on more helpful surfaces. This was an inconsequential match after all. From now on, expect Zaheer to take the #1 bowler slot.

Posted by S.h.a.d.a.b on (September 24, 2012, 9:57 GMT)

it was a funny match after Pak v NZ tensed encounter. Meaningless matches should be avoided.

Posted by Silver_Angels on (September 24, 2012, 9:07 GMT)

What a Super 8 Grouping mess Group 2 : South Africa, India, Australia, Pakistan and Group 1 : West Indies, Sri Lanka, England, New Zealand. Stronger sides are in Group 2.

Posted by   on (September 24, 2012, 6:06 GMT)

@BalajiBalaji: You Chennai guys crack me up!! :-)

Posted by Joby_George on (September 24, 2012, 6:04 GMT)

Harbajan will play in Indian team for next 2 years on the basis of this performance. Ashwin could have taken a 5 for or 6 for for sure.

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David Hopps David Hopps joined ESPNcricinfo as UK editor early in 2012. For the previous 20 years he was a senior cricket writer for the Guardian and covered England extensively during that time in all Test-playing nations. He also covered four Olympic Games and has written several cricket books, including collections of cricket quotations. He has been an avid amateur cricketer since he was 12, and so knows the pain of repeated failure only too well. The pile of untouched novels he plans to read, but rarely gets around to, is now almost touching the ceiling. He divides his time between the ESPNcricinfo office in Hammersmith and his beloved Yorkshire.
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