ICC Combined XI v England XI, Dubai, 2nd day January 8, 2012

England's batsmen fail to impress in warm-up

ESPNcricinfo staff

ICC XI 281 and 90 for 5 lead England XI 185 for 8 dec (Cook 76) by 186 runs

With the exception of Alastair Cook, England's batsmen failed to impress on the second day against the ICC Combined XI in Dubai as the visitors stumbled during the afternoon until Andrew Strauss declared 96 behind on 185 for 8. England's pace bowlers then responded by reducing the ICC XI to 8 for 3 before they recovered to extend their lead to 186 at the close.

Having yesterday fought back from 90 for 6 to post a decent first-innings total, the ICC XI continued to provide England with tough opposition in the build-up to their Test series against Pakistan. Hamid Hassan, the Afghanistan pace bowler, took two early wickets before injuring himself with a fall over the boundary fence and during the second session England lost six further wickets. Cook was sixth out for a well-compiled 76 but no one else passed 19 and a more convincing effort will be required in the run chase.

England had started the day on 16 without loss and the opening stand moved to 44 when Andrew Strauss pulled Hassan to square leg. It didn't take long for Hassan to double his tally when Jonathan Trott glanced a catch down the leg side but Cook, in the company of Kevin Pietersen, steadied England to 98 for 2 at lunch.

However, any thoughts of a steady day of accumulation for the top order vanished after the break. Pietersen edged Boyd Rankin, the Ireland and Warwickshire paceman, to the keeper and Rankin then won the duel with his county team-mate Ian Bell. The collapse was in full swing when Eoin Morgan edged Mohammad Nabi to slip as the ICC XI gave an excellent account of themselves.

Cook, meanwhile, had remained secure and steady much as he had for most of 2011. His fifty came off 66 balls as he picked up regular boundaries and he appeared set for three figures before giving Mohammad Shahzad his fourth catch of the innings. By this time Hassan had been taken to hospital after falling over the boundary fence while trying to stop the ball and, although he was cleared of serious problems, won't take any further part in the match. George Dockrell, the Ireland left-arm spinner, replaced him for the second half of the game and will be allowed to bat and bowl.

Majid Haq, the Scotland offspinner, struck with his first ball to remove Steven Davies and Broad, after some strong hitting, became Nabi's second success of the day. Graeme Swann and James Anderson cut the deficit down to below three figures which prompted Strauss's move to end the innings shortly before tea.

England's pace bowlers were soon among the wickets for a second time. William Porterfield was caught down the leg side and Broad's impressive outing continued as he trapped Paul Stirling lbw then had Saqib Ali caught behind.

Swann provided another breakthrough when Craig Williams drove to cover but Shahzad didn't back down from the challenge and thumped his first ball from Swann straight down the ground. Shahzad continued in his attacking mindset and with the score on 71, ICC XI lost Kyle Coetzer when he dragged one onto his stumps.

Shahzad was involved in a few words with the England bowlers as he and Nabi, his Afghanistan team-mate, guided the ICC XI to the close. After the efforts of the lower order on the opening day they will still be confident of leaving the visitors with a testing target on the final day.

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  • Dummy4 on January 10, 2012, 17:01 GMT

    @Precioustar84 pakistan fans are passionate there is no doubt about that but they dont just start to support them when they are winning... most of pak fans know the difference between conditions formats and dont go around gloating when we win... yes we may be excited if we beat england here but we also know who the current no.1 team is they have desrved to get there by playing consistent cricket and if pakistan do win we will know this is only the start of the journey...

  • Randolph on January 9, 2012, 23:38 GMT

    @jmcilhinney, good to see you made the choice of the better country. At least your kids will support the Aussies.

  • Martin on January 9, 2012, 15:40 GMT

    @Khan1983 - well, we must say - we are really surprised at your comments. We're assured too that you are a Pakistan follower. Please accept my apology - I thought you may be an india fan! Sorry! Our respects to the Pakistan team and fans. It should be a compelling Test match series. Hope you are looking forward to it as much as the wombats are!

  • John on January 9, 2012, 14:30 GMT

    @RandyOz, why would I not understand? England are picking players on form, which is why they are not only not easy beats but are the #1 ranked team. You show your bias when you say things like "South Africans and Irish walk in willy nilly". You know that not to be true yet you post it anyway. KP obviously earned his place, Trott has shown exactly why he was picked and Morgan was picked ahead of Bopara at the time specifically on domestic form. I think that I would understand a bit better than many Australians. Incumbency counts for a lot in any international team. You wanted to axe Ponting and then days later he's the world's second best? If you believe that then surely you were confident that runs were just around the corner. If you really think that players of his experience should be just shuffled in and out of the team on this weeks Shield form then I hope they make you chief selector. By the way, I've lived in Aust for 38 years so don't think I don't understand Australian cricket.

  • Jason on January 9, 2012, 13:38 GMT

    The ICC XI aquited themselves very well, and gave england a very good test and competition. It was a shame that Hamid Hassan got injured during Englands first innings. I think they should look at doing more games for the ICC IX, especially for warm ups for teams playing 'home' games against pakistan over the next couple of years.

  • John on January 9, 2012, 13:33 GMT

    This was a good hit out for England after a reasonable layoff. Just about everyone got some decent time in the middle. KP is obviously a bit of a concern but there's still another warmup game. I reckon that they'd still pick him for the first test even if he doesn't perform next time, but they might consider a change after that if he still doesn't fire. Someone else suggested moving Bell above KP in the batting order and I wouldn't be against that, but I wonder whether it adversely affect KP's confidence. The bowlers seemed to do a better job through the middle overs in the second innings, with wickets falling with greater regularity. Well done to the A&As. The Irish openers will be disappointed but, other than that, the A&A profile has been well aided by this game.

  • Dummy4 on January 9, 2012, 13:21 GMT

    If pakistan seriously want to win this series then they should play wrist spinner like kaneria or abdul qadir son usman to wrap up shaky eng batting and try make spinning pitches .Pak batsmen can handle swanny .But to play both ajmal and abdurrehman will not help .I think series will go towards draw . Pakistan has to collapse twice in order to give eng win and thats rarity in recent times in pakistan cricket and i admit eng is far better oponents to be beaten.

  • michael on January 9, 2012, 13:17 GMT

    @RandyOz. Swann is a hack?? He's been the standout spinner in world cricket since Warne and Murali retired. He turns the ball more than anybody else and has a tremendous cricketing brain, Lyon is just another one in a long line of spinners Australia have tried and will probably be discarded before long. You just have sour grapes because you aint No1 anymore and we are. And you can stop with the Trott isnt english crack because you have Khawaja playing for you who is Pakistani and others like Dirk Nannes (Dutch) and Andrew Symonds (English) who have played in the green and gold. SA have Tahir and WI had Nash who was a kiwi, everybody does it. Its the pure bred englishmen like Cook and Broad and Anderson who have propelled us to the top which is where we'll stay for the next few years, get used to it.

  • Dummy4 on January 9, 2012, 13:06 GMT

    Good Message for ICC to improve number of Test Teams, Afghanistan, Ireland, Netherlands must get the test status as soon as possible.

  • Saadatullah on January 9, 2012, 13:06 GMT

    Unfortunately Afghanistan fast baller Hamid Hassan got injured, If he was in the match than the result will be apposite of this, and the England Bats men will got more troubles.

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