ICC Combined XI v England XI, Dubai, 3rd day January 9, 2012

England survive wobble to take victory

ESPNcricinfo staff
109

England XI 185 for 8 dec (Cook 76) and 261 for 7 (Strauss 78, Nabi 3-66) beat ICC Combined XI 281 (Viljoen 98, Broad 4-46) and 164 for 9 dec (Shahzad 74, Broad 3-22)
Scorecard

England overcame another middle-order wobble to secure a three-wicket win against the ICC Combined Associate and Affiliate XI in Dubai. Andrew Strauss's 78 had put the visitors in control as they chased 261, but five wickets fell for 66 to leave the game in the balance, and it required composure from Steven Davies and Stuart Broad to ensure England started the tour with victory.

When Ian Bell departed England still needed 62 and the ICC XI were confident of pulling off an upset. However, Davies and Broad played sensibly to chip away at the target, although Broad fell with the scores level. The partnership was not without alarm, though, as Davies was put down at cover on 20 and Broad would have been run out had Majid Haq produced a better throw.

The ICC XI had declared 18.3 overs into the day to set up the final innings of the match, and the early indications were that England would have few problems as Strauss added 63 with Alastair Cook. Jonathan Trott almost departed for a duck - again to a catch down the leg side - but the umpires ruled the chance had not carried to the wicketkeeper. He and Strauss combined in a 70-run stand, which took England halfway towards their target with Strauss reaching a crisp fifty off 67 balls.

However, Strauss toe-ended a pull to midwicket off Haq, which opened the door for the ICC XI. Kevin Pietersen revived an old story when he chipped a catch to mid-on off George Dockrell, the Ireland left-arm spinner, who was drafted into the team after injury to Hamid Hassan. England were steadied by the Warwickshire pair of Trott and Ian Bell before another flurry of wickets.

Trott was caught at short leg and Eoin Morgan completed a lean match when he glanced Boyd Rankin down the leg side. Bell, who had played confidently to reach 39, then fell to a paddle-sweep, which Paul Stirling, fielding at slip, anticipated superbly as he ran around behind the wicketkeeper to take the catch.

Earlier in the day Broad took his seventh wicket of the match when he removed Mohammad Nabi, but Mohammad Shahzad ensured the lead was extended at a good rate alongside Haq before William Porterfield had the luxury of declaring. Graeme Swann was absent from the field with a slight muscle problem but came to the middle to hit the winning run.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • 5wombats on January 12, 2012, 19:13 GMT

    @CricketingStargazer on (January 12 2012, 00:51 AM GMT) - well, there's a challenge! TBH we're not big on ODI history, but here goes; (1) Which is the only Test-playing team to have lost an ODI by 200 or more runs at least 4 times? must be -???? ,er; India? They were good at getting thrashed in ODI (and Tests, I saw a few...) during 70's and 80's. (2) Which are the only two Test-playing teams NEVER to have lost an ODI by 200 or more runs? Must be England and Australia ? :-) ? Now, after all that - they'd better publish!

  • Meety on January 12, 2012, 6:06 GMT

    @SirViv1973 - what you fail to mention is that the player that should of played before Beer & Lyon is S O'Keefe who's FC ave is around 25, & most knowledgable fans realise that is a major oversight on behalf of our selectors, particularly as he performed with credit in Hobart against England in the Oz A tour game, he also has a batting ave of around 35. @ suve- England don't have to win everywhere to be #1, they already are #1. To compare themselves with great teams of the past & stay #1, winning at least one series in Asia in the next 12mths is a must. @SirViv1973 - several more things 1) "...but beating Sri Lanka anywhere at the moment isn't too difficult..." will probably come back to haunt you, 2) Whilst I know Oz are NOT #1 & it will be a while before they can get the rankings to show this, the fact is (in Tests) there is only TWO pieces of Silverware Oz need to win back - namely the Ashes & Border/Gavaskar, we have one colonial hand on the latter, WATCH OUT in 2013!!!!!!!

  • CricketingStargazer on January 12, 2012, 0:54 GMT

    Ps: The Netherlands have the dubious honour of having lost an ODI by 200 or more runs 5 times, while Kenya have also lost 4 times by 200 or more runs.

  • CricketingStargazer on January 12, 2012, 0:51 GMT

    Wombats: here is a brain teaster that you might like, although it is only periferally related to this thread (however, it is related to various posts within it that have strayed onto the subject of ODIs. (1) Which is the only Test-playing team to have lost an ODI by 200 or more runs at least 4 times? (2) Which are the only two Test-playing teams NEVER to have lost an ODI by 200 or more runs? Both answers may surprise you...

  • 5wombats on January 11, 2012, 17:20 GMT

    @JG2704 - this is guy who reckons Nepal would have beaten the ICC XI as well and that Adelaide is a green pitch! Can't take that seriously. Just a troublemaker. @Yevghenny - absolutely - couldn't agree more.

  • JG2704 on January 11, 2012, 13:03 GMT

    @suve on (January 09 2012, 20:24 PM GMT) You say that Australia were in the transitional phase 2010/11 which is why England beat them. So were they also in that "Transitional Period" a few weeks ago when they lost a test/drew series vs NZ. I won't mention the 47 all out vs SA as Aus did bounce back but let's face it a number 1 ranked side should not be drawing a test series with NZ at home.The last time we won in the WI was 2003-4 but that was thee only series we played in WI before the early 2009 disaster and you mention they were outplayed badly - maybe you ought to look at the scorecards and they didn't play SL in 2009. I've done the SC nonsense before. As for odi's we got thrashed by Australia last year on the same sort of pitches we beat them in the test series.

  • CricketingStargazer on January 11, 2012, 12:52 GMT

    Elliot, true, although one problem with that attack was that when one of the five was injured there was no identifiable replacement. Now, if one of the attack is injured there is Tremlett, Finn, Onions, Shazad, Woakes, Panesar, etc. who have all got international experience and have been successful. In 2005 the nearest to a replacement was Collingwood or, in a crisis, Anderson, who was struggling to regain his action and, on the rare occasions that he played, very lightly bowled because he was so expensive. As it was though, Jones's body let him down and he never played another Test. Steve Harmison struggled to recapture his menace and was dropped and recalled 13(!!) times in winter 2008/09. Matthew Hoggard suffered svere depression, which ended his international career. Andrew Flintoff couldn't stay fit. And Ashley Giles was dropped to make way for Monty. The consequences for the side were all too well demonstrated.

  • Yevghenny on January 11, 2012, 12:29 GMT

    Bringing out a DVD called "England on Top of the world, the world's number one test team" & broadcasting a new years special on Sky Sports can be misleading. ============== it's also known as "cashing in" and "filling slots" - besides, why can't cricket fans look back and enjoy the previous 12 months. Lord knows we deserve it, having had to put up with pretty empty displays for the majority of the 20 years I've been watching Cricket

  • Elliott_Tree on January 11, 2012, 11:48 GMT

    2005 bowling vs current bowling... You'd always take 2005 when all fit & firing, but itrelied on (e.g.) Jones's body and Harmison's temperament not going awry. I think this epitomises the point many commentators (professional or otherwise) have made about current Eng side: it is full of non-superstars, but with a set-up and ethos that gets results, and has the chance to keep getting results (not crash and burn like the class of 2005).

  • CricketingStargazer on January 11, 2012, 11:00 GMT

    HankasHarry, we don't control Sky (who have to sell their coverage)! I don't think that the title is misleading at all. Since the ICC Test rankings started Australia, South Africa (twice) and India have reached #1, England have never reallt threatened to, so it is a big thing for the team finally to have made it. However, as the position - at least as of September 1st 2011 - was extremely precarious and South Africa had an immediate opportunity to take the spot back, what came under the headlines was something on the lines of "... but keeping #1 will be a lot tougher". As it is, things have conspired such that England can suffer a heavy defeat to Pakistan and stay #1, but no one will be satisfied with that. Incidentally, I don't think that anyone would argue that the 2005 attack was much stronger. The pity was that it never played another Test together after the 4th Test of 2005. However, the current attack is getting better all the time with experience and has more depth.

  • 5wombats on January 12, 2012, 19:13 GMT

    @CricketingStargazer on (January 12 2012, 00:51 AM GMT) - well, there's a challenge! TBH we're not big on ODI history, but here goes; (1) Which is the only Test-playing team to have lost an ODI by 200 or more runs at least 4 times? must be -???? ,er; India? They were good at getting thrashed in ODI (and Tests, I saw a few...) during 70's and 80's. (2) Which are the only two Test-playing teams NEVER to have lost an ODI by 200 or more runs? Must be England and Australia ? :-) ? Now, after all that - they'd better publish!

  • Meety on January 12, 2012, 6:06 GMT

    @SirViv1973 - what you fail to mention is that the player that should of played before Beer & Lyon is S O'Keefe who's FC ave is around 25, & most knowledgable fans realise that is a major oversight on behalf of our selectors, particularly as he performed with credit in Hobart against England in the Oz A tour game, he also has a batting ave of around 35. @ suve- England don't have to win everywhere to be #1, they already are #1. To compare themselves with great teams of the past & stay #1, winning at least one series in Asia in the next 12mths is a must. @SirViv1973 - several more things 1) "...but beating Sri Lanka anywhere at the moment isn't too difficult..." will probably come back to haunt you, 2) Whilst I know Oz are NOT #1 & it will be a while before they can get the rankings to show this, the fact is (in Tests) there is only TWO pieces of Silverware Oz need to win back - namely the Ashes & Border/Gavaskar, we have one colonial hand on the latter, WATCH OUT in 2013!!!!!!!

  • CricketingStargazer on January 12, 2012, 0:54 GMT

    Ps: The Netherlands have the dubious honour of having lost an ODI by 200 or more runs 5 times, while Kenya have also lost 4 times by 200 or more runs.

  • CricketingStargazer on January 12, 2012, 0:51 GMT

    Wombats: here is a brain teaster that you might like, although it is only periferally related to this thread (however, it is related to various posts within it that have strayed onto the subject of ODIs. (1) Which is the only Test-playing team to have lost an ODI by 200 or more runs at least 4 times? (2) Which are the only two Test-playing teams NEVER to have lost an ODI by 200 or more runs? Both answers may surprise you...

  • 5wombats on January 11, 2012, 17:20 GMT

    @JG2704 - this is guy who reckons Nepal would have beaten the ICC XI as well and that Adelaide is a green pitch! Can't take that seriously. Just a troublemaker. @Yevghenny - absolutely - couldn't agree more.

  • JG2704 on January 11, 2012, 13:03 GMT

    @suve on (January 09 2012, 20:24 PM GMT) You say that Australia were in the transitional phase 2010/11 which is why England beat them. So were they also in that "Transitional Period" a few weeks ago when they lost a test/drew series vs NZ. I won't mention the 47 all out vs SA as Aus did bounce back but let's face it a number 1 ranked side should not be drawing a test series with NZ at home.The last time we won in the WI was 2003-4 but that was thee only series we played in WI before the early 2009 disaster and you mention they were outplayed badly - maybe you ought to look at the scorecards and they didn't play SL in 2009. I've done the SC nonsense before. As for odi's we got thrashed by Australia last year on the same sort of pitches we beat them in the test series.

  • CricketingStargazer on January 11, 2012, 12:52 GMT

    Elliot, true, although one problem with that attack was that when one of the five was injured there was no identifiable replacement. Now, if one of the attack is injured there is Tremlett, Finn, Onions, Shazad, Woakes, Panesar, etc. who have all got international experience and have been successful. In 2005 the nearest to a replacement was Collingwood or, in a crisis, Anderson, who was struggling to regain his action and, on the rare occasions that he played, very lightly bowled because he was so expensive. As it was though, Jones's body let him down and he never played another Test. Steve Harmison struggled to recapture his menace and was dropped and recalled 13(!!) times in winter 2008/09. Matthew Hoggard suffered svere depression, which ended his international career. Andrew Flintoff couldn't stay fit. And Ashley Giles was dropped to make way for Monty. The consequences for the side were all too well demonstrated.

  • Yevghenny on January 11, 2012, 12:29 GMT

    Bringing out a DVD called "England on Top of the world, the world's number one test team" & broadcasting a new years special on Sky Sports can be misleading. ============== it's also known as "cashing in" and "filling slots" - besides, why can't cricket fans look back and enjoy the previous 12 months. Lord knows we deserve it, having had to put up with pretty empty displays for the majority of the 20 years I've been watching Cricket

  • Elliott_Tree on January 11, 2012, 11:48 GMT

    2005 bowling vs current bowling... You'd always take 2005 when all fit & firing, but itrelied on (e.g.) Jones's body and Harmison's temperament not going awry. I think this epitomises the point many commentators (professional or otherwise) have made about current Eng side: it is full of non-superstars, but with a set-up and ethos that gets results, and has the chance to keep getting results (not crash and burn like the class of 2005).

  • CricketingStargazer on January 11, 2012, 11:00 GMT

    HankasHarry, we don't control Sky (who have to sell their coverage)! I don't think that the title is misleading at all. Since the ICC Test rankings started Australia, South Africa (twice) and India have reached #1, England have never reallt threatened to, so it is a big thing for the team finally to have made it. However, as the position - at least as of September 1st 2011 - was extremely precarious and South Africa had an immediate opportunity to take the spot back, what came under the headlines was something on the lines of "... but keeping #1 will be a lot tougher". As it is, things have conspired such that England can suffer a heavy defeat to Pakistan and stay #1, but no one will be satisfied with that. Incidentally, I don't think that anyone would argue that the 2005 attack was much stronger. The pity was that it never played another Test together after the 4th Test of 2005. However, the current attack is getting better all the time with experience and has more depth.

  • HankasHarry on January 11, 2012, 9:45 GMT

    Bringing out a DVD called "England on Top of the world, the world's number one test team" & broadcasting a new years special on Sky Sports can be misleading. I know that the episode is about beating India in Eng to reach the ranking, but the headline can be misleading (I do not recall India or SAF going to such efforts when they held the no. 1 ranking...). But lets see how the next 12 months pan out for the poms. I must say that you (Eng) have a very strong team, however I still feel that the 2005 bowling lineup of Simon Jones, Hoggard, Flintoff & Harmison at his best outclass Anderson & co. Just my opinion...

  • on January 10, 2012, 20:13 GMT

    @HankasHarry i am sure most knowledgble england fans would agree that the are not a great side yet but are definality the best at the moment SA are up there without a doubt and over the next year or so will be interesting for both teams....

  • on January 10, 2012, 15:35 GMT

    i am sure if Afghan Player Hamid Hassan were not injured, ICC Combined Assosciate and Affiliate XI was 100% winner

  • CricketingStargazer on January 10, 2012, 13:33 GMT

    HankasHarry, actually I think that almost no one in England is hyping the team. This is one of the big myths. The vast majority of England fans (and cricket fans in general) acknowledge that the next 12 months will be the big Test of the side with away series against Pakistan, Sri Lanka and India and a home series against South Africa. If England finish the year #1 that will be a major achievement, because it won't come much tougher than this. Mind you, little more than a year ago England fans felt that winning in Australia and then beating India would be a severe test. To a certain degree the same applies to Pakistan who have started to climb up the rankings thanks to some excellent performances and to a fixture list that has not posed insuperable challenges, allowing the side to build up some momentum. How both England and Pakistan react to the challenge of playing the other form side of 2011 will be very interesting: which side will crack (if either side does)?

  • Elliott_Tree on January 10, 2012, 12:59 GMT

    I don't think any Eng fans (who's opinions are worth anything) have been comparing current Eng to the great Aus and WI sides. We all hope that such a hegemony may be built, but crikey - it is a long way off. Based on actual results I think the ICC rankings are pretty fair at the moment - Eng have just have noses in front, not much to choose between Ind, Aus, SA (after the current series). But it is all to play for, massive year coming up: must beat Pak to get recent win in 'sub-continental' conditions (ditto SL); then SA at home (insert RandyOZ joke here) - got to show we can beat them and not just scrape a draw; then Ind in Ind - if we add a series win there then #1 spot is undisputed, break out the champagne, name all your children 'Andrew' for years come. Lot of cricket before that, though... (so looking forward to 2012 - even if Eng lose, there should be so much good cricket - ACE :o)

  • 5wombats on January 10, 2012, 12:56 GMT

    @HankasHarry on (January 10 2012, 11:19 AM GMT):... "the manner in which the Eng team is being hyped in Eng. They are carrying on as if they have been the best test side for the past 5 years & equal to Steve Waugh's Aus". That's patent rubbish. What hype??? You don't know what you are talking about. We're in the middle of Winter in the soccer season. Cricket doesn't get hyped here even in Summer! NOBODY, but NOBODY said England were anywhere near Australia at their height. This is the chat from other countries who want to build England up in order to knock them down. That's why there are Aussies here too as well as Saffers. It's jealousy. This is just a little warm up game. Get a grip.

  • AlanHarrison on January 10, 2012, 12:30 GMT

    Strange RandyOZ however how not only the United XI (or whatever you want to call it) got more than 47 every time it batted against the 'world's best attack' in the 2009-10 series, but every other team in world cricket has got more than that total every time they've batted against 'the world's best attack' for as long as anyone can remember: even Zimbabwe managed to break 50 against South Africa back in 2005.

  • StoneRose on January 10, 2012, 11:54 GMT

    Good for England to stay in the winning habit. It shows how far England have come as a side when the only dissent is about not winning convincingly enough. Only a few years ago it used to be about the number 3 batsman problem, no spinner, poor preparation and lack of strength in depth. Even without Bresnan you have Tremlett and Finn, hardly bad replacements. And Monty, relatively experienced for a #2 spinner. Not convinced on Bopara but all this criticism about Morgan - he's one of the most exciting players of the last few years. Give him a chance.

  • HankasHarry on January 10, 2012, 11:19 GMT

    landl47 - I don't think that anyone has a problem with Eng being the current no. 1 ranked test team. What does bother me is the the manner in which the Eng team is being hyped in Eng. They are carrying on as if they have been the best test side for the past 5 years & equal to Steve Waugh's Aus. DVD's titled "Eng on top of the world". Give it a break & concentrate on holding on to the ranking for a year or two before going on about how invinsible you are. Pak will give Eng a good go, as will SAF. Swan is losing form (and confidence) every test & KP is becoming reminiscent of Hershelle Gibbs a few years back, in one good showing per 10 innings played. Cook, Trott, Strauss & Bell are solid, but will have their work cut out against Steyn, Philander & co. As will Broad & Anderson vs Peterson, Smith, Amla & AB. Keep your feet on the ground, you are the current no. 1 ranked team in test cricket, not the dominating no. 1 team of the new age!

  • WilliamFranklin on January 10, 2012, 11:19 GMT

    @jonesy How can you say a warm up match shows England are not worthy or the number one ranking? Bizarre and highly amusing, especially coming from an Australian with all the depth of talent they have haha

  • on January 10, 2012, 11:09 GMT

    All credit goes to Afghanistan because Afghan players done a great performance but the Ireland players helped the county mate England to win to match and the Ireland players was the weakest players in the match with poor captaincy for declaring the batting to give less target to England and more times to England to play ...

  • Yevghenny on January 10, 2012, 11:03 GMT

    RandyOz, it hasn't just been the 47 ('recovered' from 21-9!!!) where australia have been blown away. Do you remember boxing day 2010? 98 all out (plays 157-0)

  • haroonalvi on January 10, 2012, 9:51 GMT

    @Peter Bryant......lol good one. Cant stop laughing. Surprised to see the name Pakistan appearing, I thought we were much more humble than some other team's fans.

  • VivGilchrist on January 10, 2012, 9:14 GMT

    Wow! A clash of two composite teams - ICC Combined Assosciate and Affiliate XI v the Combined England, Ireland, and South African XI. Do such fixtures count as official games?

  • on January 10, 2012, 8:34 GMT

    The performance of the Associate and Affiliate XI shows that given opportunities the Associate and Affiliate nations can become far better than what they are right now. The right path for ICC is undoubtedly expansion of the sports in as many countries as possible and it can't be materialized to its best until and unless cricket has a football like structure where each nation is theoretically equivalent to any other nation.

  • RandyOZ on January 10, 2012, 8:28 GMT

    @landl47 - you love twisting the facts to suit your argument don't ya? Guys please ignore his twisting of the truth. What he really meant to say was Swann got only 4 wickets in the first 3 test matches against India, for 321 runs. In the first 5 innings of the series he got 2/231. Number 1 spinner in the world? Haha, laughable. What this means is Lyon is currently matching him and can even go wicketless in the first innings in Perth. @landl47 your lack of cricketing knowledge astounds me.

  • SirViv1973 on January 10, 2012, 7:38 GMT

    @RandyOz great to hear from you again was getting a bit bored with just Jonesy, Difficult to see how you can compare Lyon to Swann at this stage of his career let alone say he is better. Swann has over a 150 test wickets on a variety of pitches against the world's best batsmen. Lyon has just started and is already coming under pressure having had no impact at all in the current series. If you knew what you were talking about you would know Samit is a batsmen and not a frontline bowler, Eng would never pick him as the only spin option, and I doubt he will ever play a test anyway. In terms of Monty he has 126 test wickets at 34, so I would rather have him as back up than your guys Michael Beer who managed 1 wicket @112 in his solitary test and has a 1st class Ave of 45! or Xavier Doherty who has 3 test wickets @102! If either of those 2 aren't available then there's always Steve Smith who has 3 wickets @73, I think most would agree that Lyon is the best of a very very bad bunch!

  • jonesy2 on January 10, 2012, 7:24 GMT

    oh and trying to sledge amatuer players who cant speak english? you must be so proud. big men. whats funny is that you could find more manly and intimidating fast bowlers than anderson broad and co in the local all girls school

  • suve on January 10, 2012, 6:53 GMT

    @SomersetJord: For the 3rd time I'll repeat the reason I mentioned ODI's played in India & WC was because they have played horribly in Asia. The reason I said England doesn't deserve to be No 1 in Test's was because They have'nt won a Series In Asia (vs Pak,Ind,Sl) since 2001 and have you also forgotten about this very match which was played yesterday, England almost lost to the ICC combined players. No offence but after this match you still believe England are the Best Test team. The Bangladeshi's or a non test playing nation like Nepal could of done much better than England in this match. Im not trying to say England are a bad team but they are certainly not the best. This is my opinion, If you disagree thats abosloutley fine with me. Yes you're right, It is too early to say this but If England beat Pak in the UAE and beat Sri Lanka in Sl and South Africa later in the year I will most definatley say that England are the best Test Team.

  • CricketingStargazer on January 10, 2012, 6:46 GMT

    LiamF, because England agreed to the substitute George Dockerall batting and bowling it no longer satisfied the requirement of being and XI v XI match.Unfortunate for the Associate players who did themselves great credit in the game.

  • on January 10, 2012, 5:29 GMT

    I think it was a great experience for the Associate and affiliate teams members, and ICC should give the opportunity to this teams to play against the test playing nation, and ICC should pay attention and support the Afghan players because they have great talent of playing . in the match, Mohammad shahzad scored 125 , Mohammad Nabi took 5 wickets and Hammid Hassin took 2 wickets ,if he had not been woulded ,he would have took at least 7 wickets. I request to the ICC to take in account the performance of Afghan players which has a lot of problems regarding the grounds, facilities.

  • landl47 on January 10, 2012, 5:04 GMT

    My, it's hard work finding things to downplay England's success, isn't it, RandyOz? Hey, let's go back 3 years to Strauss's first test in his current run as captain (he also beat Pakistan in a series in 2006 as a stand-in skipper). Since that test 3 years ago in the WI, Strauss has won 15 and lost 3 tests. That would be the same number of tests that Australia lost in 2011 alone, or as Australia lost in their last series against England. In fact, Aus has lost 8 tests in the last 3 years. And how about Swann- #1 before Lyon came along? In England's last test, against India at the Oval, Swann took 9-208 in the match including a sixfer in the second innings. Let's see what Lyon has done against the same side: 2 wickets in 2 games, both tailenders, for 180 runs. The best you can say about that is that it's better than the Aus spinners did against England in 2010/2011. Face it, RandyOz, you got nothing.

  • jmcilhinney on January 10, 2012, 4:53 GMT

    @LiamF, FC does not allow for replacements, so allowing Dockrell to bat and bowl required that the match be downgraded. Certainly a better option for both teams than forcing the A&A to play a bowler down.

  • AfghanIdeal on January 10, 2012, 3:51 GMT

    AMAZING... after all the perfomances from ENGLAND team, Afghan Played Mohammad Shahzad declared as MAN of the MATCH,...its quiet rare that player from losing team wins this title,... but he reallly deserved it... Awesome Perfomance by ICC Comb XI....

  • on January 10, 2012, 3:16 GMT

    Exactly @ peter bryant said, England has no right to be no.1 just because they have won 8 out of 9 series in the last 2 yrs. Personally, i think SL should be no. 1 as they unluckily lost to SA by an innings few days ago.

  • Meety on January 10, 2012, 1:48 GMT

    Got out of jail in this one. Would of been a funny week if a composite team & a Banga A-side knocked 2 Pommy sides off! I'll have to settle for 1 out of 2. Ashes are coming back home in 2013!!!!! :)

  • on January 10, 2012, 1:24 GMT

    @ spence 1324 ! Look at this link and see who is better outside subcontinent ! Pakistan is way ahead of india !

  • Lmaotsetung on January 10, 2012, 0:39 GMT

    Despite having a couple of test hundreds under his belt I too am worried about Morgan. Hope he doesn't turn into another India's next best thing Virat Kholi. Just goes to show how MASSIVELY different ODI and Test are. As much as people want to play down the strength of this ICC Combined Team, it's probably on par with most county teams playing friendlies against visiting test nations. Probably most of the players ave 1st class experience so it was a good hit out imo and hopefully the struggling batsmen can get things going in the 2nd friendly.

  • on January 9, 2012, 23:50 GMT

    Personally,i think Englands no 1 test status,is ridiculous.Just because they have won 8 and drawn 1 of their last 9 series means nothing.I think Australia or Sri Lanka should be rated right up at the top.Australia put together a monumental 47 on a tricky pitch,and also posted a memorable 1-1 series draw at home to New Zealand.Sri Lanka also did brilliantly to hold out for 20 odd overs at Cardiff last year,before lucky England bowled them out for 80.Just because England can post 700 on their green tops,and can bowl out India twice on the same pitch is entirely irellevant.English fans get used to the idea,that youre no good and the only decent sides are Australia,India,Pakistan and Sri Lanka.

  • RandyOZ on January 9, 2012, 23:22 GMT

    A lot of you poms like crowing about the 47 we scored, against the world's best attack (at the time, now its Oz), whereas you scored 51 against the WI with a host of South Africans I might add. That too against terrific bowlers like Benn (lol!). 50 odd against SA or the WI? I know which i'd rather!

  • RandyOZ on January 9, 2012, 23:12 GMT

    Yet another abject failure by Graeme Swann, how on earth did this guy get to #1? Oh I know, because Lyon hadn't started yet! Worrying signs for the United XI that their best spinner is a 34yo journeyman with less than 200 wickets and their best backup is a man who had his career ended by Gilly at the WACA. The 3rd guy...well the less said about Samit Patel the better.

  • LiamF on January 9, 2012, 22:59 GMT

    Does anyone know why all of a sudden this match is no longer First-Class? I know there a was a replacement but it was still noted as First-Class after that happened. Wasn't like an unofficial 12/13 a side match or anything.

  • smileyplus on January 9, 2012, 22:42 GMT

    @5wombats, Yeah im spewing about the loss of Aamir aswell. Seen him in the Sydney test (that Pak famously lost) amazing. Exceptional talent with the ball, even by Pakistani standards (Wasim/Waqar/Imran and co). But alas, pakistans' downfall will be as per usual. Their Batting will fold under relenting pressure from a professional bowling unit. Their fielding lapses will make them look very average and the temperament of the majority of their batsmen found out. Im not expecting any innings defeats as its such a flat track but nonetheless, i honestly cant see any victories for pakistan. Grafters will do well, (Cook/Trott/Khan), Kp not so much and Akmal out of the test side again. Pakistan need a couple of good young batsmen who are willing to drop anchor and set up an innings. Not ones who strike at over a hundred, and average 20-30.

  • 5wombats on January 9, 2012, 21:45 GMT

    @suve - what are you talking about; you are calling Adelaide December 2010 a "green pitch"! We think not. Do you know what a green pitch is? You reckon Aus the best side in the world! Remarkable. I would say this; Pakistan (talent wise) are more talented than this current Australia team. This was proved in England in 2010 with the 1-1 series against Aus. Would also say that the current Pakistan side has more POTENTIAL than the current Australia team. Current Australia team have players who are very important to them close to retirement (Hussey, Ponting) and nothing coming through to replace them. Nevertheless - Aus batting is flakey in the extreme, and their bowlers are average. IW'sO Pakistan overall currently a better team than Australia. Don't worry @suve; we love Pakistan, also; Sri Lanka, so it's nothing personal! Light the blue touch-paper and retire.....!

  • CricketingStargazer on January 9, 2012, 21:36 GMT

    Actually, Suve, it was 2010, if you are being a stickler. Since 2005 England have only played 4 series in the sub-continent, winning one, losing two and drawing the other. The series against India were 1-0 in India in 2009, where the 1st Test was lost after a declaration, with England having dominated the first four days and 1-0 in Sri Lanka in 2007 when Sri Lanka were at the height of their powers. In 2006 the series in India was drawn when India collapsed to a superannuated spinner who retired at the end of the following season. India were pushed to the limit both in the 2006 and 2009 series, the former against what was little more than an England A side due to injuries and against a transitional side in 2009. The numbers are nowhere near as one-sided as most people think. Obviously, England want to win this winter. Pakistan are going to be a tough test and a great benchmark. Sri Lanka are also going to be tough opponents. Bring them on! The side needs to beat teams like these.

  • on January 9, 2012, 21:36 GMT

    very unconvincing win by England against a weak team. They can always do an India and claim they are slow starters.Good excuse.

  • SirViv1973 on January 9, 2012, 21:15 GMT

    @Suve, The last time Eng won a test series in sub Continent was 2 yrs ago against Ban. Of Course this doesn't count for much but you asked the question so I answered. Prior to that we have not played on the sub Continent since 2008 which was under a different management set up and the team has improved i measurably since then. I'm sorry Suve but beating Sri Lanka anywhere at the moment isn't too difficult and Aus win there last year doesn't mean a great deal or make then world no1's a better barometer would probably be when they played Ind at the end of 2010 and were smashed in both games, Sri Lanka have won 1 test match since Murali retired even West Indies drew a series there just over a year ago. You really should just wait until this series gets started before you have a go at this Eng team you might well end up being quite surprised by how well they do.

  • Lmaotsetung on January 9, 2012, 21:10 GMT

    2001 mean England have played just 4-5 test series in the sub continent. In years when there are no Ashes tour Eng usually tour 2 countries so in essence Eng can only tour the sub continent like once every 2 years since the other year is dedicated to Nz/WI/SA tours. Btw the last series win in sub continent was bangladesh tour :P if you go by 2001, it means we've only been through 3 cycles of teams since then 2001 Nasser Eng Revival...2005 Ashes Triumphant team....and present...hardly an eternity.

  • SirViv1973 on January 9, 2012, 21:00 GMT

    @Suve or should I say Jonesy, you really are still struggling to back up your claim about Aus being the rightful No1 team. The top 3 are all totally unproven with a mere 10 tests between them, Ponting and Hussey are in their late 30's & close to retirement! every Aus fan on here says Haddin should be dropped! Harris is their best seamer and can't play a whole series due to Injures, Siddle tries hard and Hilfenhaus has had one decent and one good test in his entire career. Lyon has done little to suggest he can go on and be a top class spinner but they have to stick with him having seen the other options of Doherty and Beer! Yes Watson will come back but like Harris is Injury prone and will likely have to give up bowling to prolong his career. So we have an unsettled batting line, no top class spinner, no allrounder and a couple of promising quicks who are out injured, Can't see great balance there. If anything this team is more in transitional than the 1 we beat last year!

  • SomersetJord on January 9, 2012, 20:58 GMT

    Suve why do you keep mentioning ODI's? We're talking about test cricket. I'm not trying to deny how bad England are in ODI's but we are far and away the best test team. How was the 2011 Australia team in transition? who were they missing? And this supposed most balanced side got bundled out for less than 50 just a couple of months ago, have failed to make 100 4 times in the last 12 months, and have drawn test series at home to New Zealand (the lowest ranked test nation until they won that game) I know you're only trying to wind people up as nobody with 2 brain cells to rub together would make the claims you ar making, but then maybe that's the problem. If you actually look at results, the only team that could rightfully challenge Englands current status is SA, but they can't seem to win at home very much for some reason. Anyway, troll elsewhere fella, i'm bored now - Lets discuss this again after the next few series have finished and we'll see how your argument stands up then.

  • spence1324 on January 9, 2012, 20:57 GMT

    @suve,bit rich coming from a pakistan fan as they are no better than india outside the subcontinent.Still remember does 3 sub 100 scores last series in england, like a rabbit court in the headlights me thinks!

  • kempson94 on January 9, 2012, 20:57 GMT

    Some people need to realise that cricket not played in Asia still counts. If Jimmy Anderson is a poor bowler for taking wickets in English conditions, surely Steyn, Morkel, Siddle, Johnson and Gul are too poor bowlers as they have failed on England tours. Cricket did fine before Asian teams and the best matches continue to take place away from the flat crowd killers.

  • 5wombats on January 9, 2012, 20:45 GMT

    @thePakistanian - Excellent post, one of the best I've read from an opposing side in ages. Such a breath of fresh air! Friend; England fans are long-suffering. We all remember the euphoria of beating the Aussies in 2005 and then going off to Pakistan a few months later and getting knocked on our backsides at Multan. We know perfectly well and from bitter experience that Pakistan can burst any teams' balloon. We were at Lords that fateful day (Day 2) in 2010. We got there about half an hour late and looked through a gap in the stands. I couldn't believe my eyes when I saw Trott and Prior at the crease! OMG! it was 47/4! We then enjoyed an exhibition of superb bowling from Amir and friends - who had it on a string. I'm telling you they had it going around corners. What a brilliant days' cricket! We here have total respect for Pakistan - a great cricketing nation with fierce pride. England fans know it's going to be a tough fight! Please publish.

  • suve on January 9, 2012, 20:34 GMT

    @ SirViv1973 and dharrington16: The Reason I brought up the ODI's were because It was played in India (sub Continent). Yes I Agree it's a completley different format but when did England last win a TEST Series in the sub continent?? in 2001!!!!!!!!!!. Australia last won a test series in the sub continent was in 2011. Winning in pitches in Eng and Aus doesnt make them world Champs, They have to win in all countries and conditions. Which England havent sin 2001 which is more than a decade ago. Thats why I said they dont deserve to be No 1 in tests. This is my opinion, I respect all of your views but seriously 2001!!!!!, cmom

  • SirViv1973 on January 9, 2012, 20:32 GMT

    Good workout in the end, looks like all the seamers did a decent job, although Broad clearly was the stand out. Swan will need to improve and hopefully will be able to get some more overs under his belt against PCB. Decent time in the middle for the 2 openers and Bell and Trott will be happy enough with their 2nd inns knocks. Pietersen will im sure improve in time for 1st test but like many on here I am a bit worried about Morgan, I wonder if Bopara is given a chance in the final warm up and scores big and Morgan fails whether Eng might decides to stick him in at 6, his middle pace could do a job as the 5th bowler too. this is the team I would play against PCB: 1,Strauss 2,Trott,3,Bell,4 KP,5 Morgan, 6,Bopara 7, Prior, 8 Swan (if fit) 9, Tremlett (If fit) 10 Onions 11, Monty, I would also add I think Bresnan is a big loss I thought he would be our most effective seamer along with Broad. p.s I've just worked out Suve is Jonsey2 posing as a Sri Lankan!

  • suve on January 9, 2012, 20:24 GMT

    @ SomersetJord:Yup, your right about England beating Australia in aus last year in the ashes. Aus were still in the transition period in the09&2011 ashes series after the retierment of Warne,Mcgrath,Gilly,ect. Now Australia have a balanced side which by far looks the best test team currently. All the test series you mentioned were played in SA (which you only managed to draw), Eng and Aus- These were all played in Green pitches. As soon as England play Test cricket or ODI's in the Sub continent or even the carribean they seem to get outplayed so badly. When was the last time Eng managed to win a test series in the sub continent or in WI? Remember losing to WI in 09, Eng got bundled out for 50all out. Lost to SL in 09, Lost to India 09. Eng were so lucky to get into the QF of the WC in 2011 and ended up losing for 10 wickets against SL. Lost vs Ireland in the WC must be pretty embrassing too. England are and always have been poor away, whearas Aus were consistent since 2000-2012

  • OhhhMattyMatty on January 9, 2012, 20:21 GMT

    Great win. Against one of the strongest sides in the world. Shahzad, Hassan and Rankin would get in any Test side, but England's!

  • YorkshirePudding on January 9, 2012, 20:18 GMT

    @Khan1983, most of the Barmy Army (myself included) have recognised for a long time that this is a tough year for england, even without the added weight of being #1. The reason is the conditions in the Sub-con (and UAE) are very different to the UK, with low/slow wickets and a lot of spin from day 3/4. 1-0 or 2-0 is a reasonable prediction, Personally I think england will be lucky to draw this series, as Pakistan are always a good challenge (and a lot more so than India), mind you at least England goes out and about and doesnt sit in its home conditions playing 2 test series to maintain the #1 slot unlike some teams i can think off.

  • Coastaltown on January 9, 2012, 20:08 GMT

    Aw bless your heart jonesy, what exactly is it that you have against england? Come clean, was your mrs nicked by a pom?

  • SirViv1973 on January 9, 2012, 19:59 GMT

    @Suve, what are you talking about ? In one sentence you are saying Eng don't deserve to be No1 ranked test team, then in the next you are using the recent ODI series defeat in Ind as justification! How can you possible justify Aus as being the rightful No1 team ? Eng have beaten them in the last 2 series home and away, not to mention that 2 of the victories in Aus last year were by an inns. This is the same Aus that have recently lost a test at home to NZL for the first team in 26 yrs and who were bowled out for 47 against SAF, not to mention the fact that they have lost their last 2 series in Ind. You must be completely basing your opinion on them winning the first 2 tests against Ind and their Series win in SRL last year. No disrespect to Sri Lankan cricket but their recent record post Murali is right down there with Ban!

  • on January 9, 2012, 19:49 GMT

    Viva La AFG. We've came here to stay.. Not for a quick visit, We belong to the cricket world.... We rise and rise

  • on January 9, 2012, 19:30 GMT

    Although England's batting looks a bit rusty now, I think they have benefitted from not playing too much T20 cricket, especially in the IPL. I look at my own team (SA), and see poor shot selection as being an issue, and something that probably originates from slogfest cricket. As a long-time cricket fan and as a purist, I see Test cricket is really only the true legitimate form of the international game (after all, that's why it is called TEST cricket!). In fact, even as a neutral, I have been watching the IND/AUS matches. ODI's are entertaining and still require some subtlety and strategy, T20's I can live without. About 2 weeks into last year's IPL, I tuned out. I wish that CSA would arrange some more meaningful Test tours (3-5 Tests). Sorry about the minor rant and off-topic comments ;-).

  • Khan1983 on January 9, 2012, 19:18 GMT

    One can easily sense the Barmy army's tall claims mellowing down after this match as is evident here! Rather than trumpeting shallow claims they are looking seriously at their team.While I thought Pakistan is gonna win this 1-0 ,after this I m thinking a 2-0 is possible if this is the depth of English team,and after PCB XI team's game maybe even 3-0. And now i shud get ready for barmy army's deluge!

  • dharrington16 on January 9, 2012, 19:11 GMT

    @Suve why are you comparing ODI form? This is a completely different format of the game. Also the last winter series England had didn't exactly go badly now did it??

  • JG2704 on January 9, 2012, 19:04 GMT

    @Posted by Dravid_Gravitas on (January 09 2012, 16:55 PM GMT) - always said I thought the declaration was a no brainer. These games are about giving our players as much practice as possible and unless Swann and Anderson were thrashing at the ball in a hit out or get out manner it would have been a case (if they stayed in) of wasting valuable practice time for bowlers and our top order batsmen. An unconvincing win but I suppose it is a win nonetheless.

  • JG2704 on January 9, 2012, 18:58 GMT

    @Posted by Front-Foot-Lunge on (January 09 2012, 17:01 PM GMT) Re "We all love a good jonesy don't we?" - Answer is no

  • JG2704 on January 9, 2012, 18:56 GMT

    @suve on (January 09 2012, 17:14 PM GMT) - England have not lost a test series home or away since West Indies in 2008. ODI form has no bearing on Test form/ratings. As for your argument that Australia deserve the number 1 rating .. well England beat Australia in the last Ashes series in Australia and also won the previous series in England - so that kind of magnifies the lack of wisdom in your comments - never mind the NZ series draw at home which was barely weeks ago.

  • on January 9, 2012, 18:40 GMT

    Welldone England. I am from Pak. I was sure England will loss this match or at least it will be a draw but it is approach of Eng which make them win this match.

  • igorolman on January 9, 2012, 18:18 GMT

    Why is anyone on this thread talking about anything other than England, the Associates or maybe Pakistan? If you want to go big up your own team, or bag on a rival, do it on a thread connected with said team. I'm glad for the Associates that they pushed England so hard, and this, remember, was England's strongest available side that they were ever going to pick (Prior for Davies and Bresnan for Finn because of injury). The 5-bowler thing is never going to happen, no matter how much you or I want it to - especially without Prior and Bresnan. Some have suggested making a 'RoW' Test side from the Associates - I think that would degrade the idea of Tests as much as the wretched World XI nonsense in 2005-6 did, but certainly gathering together the best available Associate players to play 4-day warm-ups before tours (in England v SA, for example) could only help their development as cricketers and hopefully filter down to their national team-mates.

  • spence1324 on January 9, 2012, 18:15 GMT

    The fact that england want for the win shows us there number 1 wining mentality,if that was pakistan thay would have just parked the bus and played for a bore draw,thats the difference.

  • SomersetJord on January 9, 2012, 17:58 GMT

    suve: Is your memory that short that you've already forgotten about our 3-1 demolition of Australia last year? The only team apparently good enough to be number 1? They can't even win at home against New Zealand so how can they be the best? There is also the 1-1 draw we had away in South Africa, we have beat Australia at home on both the last 2 occasions they have visitied as well so i'm not sure how your logic works. England got to number 1 because they were the best, if they can remain the best and stay there is the next challenge.

  • hhillbumper on January 9, 2012, 17:33 GMT

    Jonesey 2. It still hurts doesn't it.3-1 in your own backyard by the Poms. It hurts you a bit.What about the last two series in uk.2-1 both times.that makes 3 out of the last 4 series you lost to the worlds worst team.So mate where does that leave you. By the way a lot of us have started using 47 as a pin number.I neary fell off my chair laughing watching it.

  • suve on January 9, 2012, 17:14 GMT

    Both England and India don't deserve to be the No 1 test team, as they are absolutley awful away from home. England beat India clean Sweep in both ODI's and Tests in England. A couple of months later India beat England clean sweep in the ODI's in India. The only team that deserve to be No 1 is Australia, they are the only team that are capable to win Cricket matches in both Home and Away conditions. After that (Talent wise) I would put Pakistan, I know the Pakistan have had alot of problems but they have decent players who can win Test matches both away and home. Some may think im mental but thats true, just watch. Im Sri Lankan and I don't think that SL are as good as ENG,IND,AUS and PAK in Test matches but Sri lanka is one of the best ODI teams even without Murali,Sanath Vaas .

  • Front-Foot-Lunge on January 9, 2012, 17:01 GMT

    We all love a good jonesy don't we? LOL Someone should come up with a poem that includes the words Ashes, 47, Ponting, Clarke etc. Now that would be good for a laugh!

  • thePakistanian on January 9, 2012, 16:59 GMT

    As a Pakistani I'm not going to judge England on this warm up game!! Cuz most players are playing after a long time & are rusty!! But next game is important for England as that Pakistan Board XI is kind of like Pak A team! & many of them are International players! So it will be good challenge for England! But English performance in that match could will not be the barometer for Englands strength, but it will only show which players are not in form & who's having trouble in Asian conditions! Although Pakistan shouldn't look at these performances & just focus to play serious hard cricket! Hopefully this will be a Competitive series!!

  • Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas on January 9, 2012, 16:55 GMT

    Some lessons for India the way England went through this tour game and came out on top. Wish my team could play like this. How I thought this was a timid declaration by Strauss. I come back and see that England came out on top. Not for no reason this is the #1 team.

  • jackiethepen on January 9, 2012, 16:50 GMT

    Good fight back by England batting last - and on the potential banana skin. Why no words of praise for Strauss - whose batting we were worried about? He led from the front. NO question of batting as an anchor. He just launched into the opposition and set the tone. Good partnership from him and Cook, and Trott and Bell, to take us to within 62 runs of the total. Can't understand why that was seen as a problem. Critics seem to be searching for the downside. Didn't we win comfortably in the end? England began to bat in partnerships again after a few months of being split up.

  • AlanHarrison on January 9, 2012, 16:47 GMT

    @ Front-Foot-Lunge: Perhaps said critics will complain about England fans who arbitrarily inflate the margin of England victories :)

  • CricketingStargazer on January 9, 2012, 16:41 GMT

    Jonsey is fun. One of the best things on these feedback pages. Once or twice there has been an entertaining exchange between him and one of his clones congratulating each other on how they wind up England fans. Not too much to cheer in Australian cricket for the last couple of years, so the aim is to show that other sides are nearly as bad as his own. Obviously the rightful #1 if there were any truth in the ICC rankings would be a side that has 3 times in 18 months failed to score 100 and once didn't even scare 50 very much! :-) It is depressing that the 4 sides in the chasing pack have all been so inconsistent that it has undervalued England's ranking. Here's hoping that Pakistan will pose a bigger challenge than recent rivals.

  • 200ondebut on January 9, 2012, 16:40 GMT

    Good run out for the #1 side - a win under the belt. I wouldn't worry too much about the batting as they tend to come good when it matters (look at the scores they posted against Aus and India over the last year). The concern to me was the inability to finish the ICC off in the 1st Innings - to let them get 281 after being 122 for 7 was disappointing.

  • AlanHarrison on January 9, 2012, 16:38 GMT

    England fans such as wombats naturally are suggesting that this result was as close as it was because the ICC Associates XI did a pretty good job and suggesting that the concept could be used further on England tours. But I wonder if the England authorities will themselves take initative about this and be prepared to arrange some such fixtures during the English summer against visiting sides, in place of the not-always-meaningful England Lions matches that were played last year. Myself I think this match showed a combination of some good efforts by the ICC XI and some lacklustre performances by England players. Ironic that Rankin dismissed Morgan however: in a parallel universe where things were run a bit differently, they both might now be playing on the same side against England, giving England a bigger win in matches like this!

  • allblue on January 9, 2012, 16:38 GMT

    A good game of 3-day cricket, competitive throughout and just want England wanted to get moving again. I'm convinced that proper warm-up matches is the way to go, Duncan Fletcher's 13-a-side knock-abouts did England no favours nor India now it seems. Bresnan's injury is disappointing as he's maturing into a substantial Test cricketer, but I trust Finn to do an adequate job with the ball as replacement. He seemed to take a different approach in the two innings, and I suspect it will be the second of those, a tight hard-to-score-off line that he will be asked to bowl in the Test with Broad and Anderson taking the strike role. Broad will also get a chance to stake a claim for the no. 8 slot, an increasingly important role in the modern game. So far so good, Bresnan's absence apart.

  • Bramblefly on January 9, 2012, 16:07 GMT

    I agree with the view that the the Associate XI warm up games are a great idea. Not just for series played in neutral countries either. Maybe it's time for the ICC to make them a required element of the future tours programme. I know some would argue that it's no preparation for a series against say, Aus, to play against third country players in Canberra. However, development of the game in new markets is part of the ICC's remit. Maybe it's time to sacrifice one or two one day games on each tour for the associates. Ity may not fit in with the short term money making requirement but it would surely pay financial dividends in the longer term.

  • YorkshirePudding on January 9, 2012, 15:59 GMT

    @JG2704, well bresnan is now out so little chance of going with a 5 bowler strategy as the batting reserves arnt there without Bresnan....Most likely Onions, Tremlett and Monty will get a bow with either Broad or Andersonl, especially if Swann still has a niggle in his leg muscle.

  • mikeindex on January 9, 2012, 15:49 GMT

    The satirist responsible for creating Jonesy2 should be given his own slot on Cricinfo's Page 2. He's much funnier than Andrew Hughes.

  • Zahidsaltin on January 9, 2012, 15:43 GMT

    ICC XI is a very good idea as it will help associate players to develope their skills. Other teams should follow this trend too. Some youngesters from Bangladesh and Zim should also be added in ICC XIs in the future.

  • Bramblefly on January 9, 2012, 15:36 GMT

    Up late aren't you jonesy2? This must be very important to you. It's great that one testing warm up match means the decline of a massively successful cricket team. We'll start dismantling English cricket's structures right away beacuse it's clearly hopeless. England won the match by the way. 2010-11 still hurts doesn't it?

  • rayinto on January 9, 2012, 15:34 GMT

    With all that has happened to his country, its refreshing to see the Afghani wicketkeeper Mohammad Shazad perform so well. This bodes well for the future of cricket in that region.

  • landl47 on January 9, 2012, 15:29 GMT

    Poor old jonesy2, trying to come up with something. Just when you were getting ready to write England's obituary, they go and win the game. Still, nice effort sat pretending that the England side isn't worthy of #1, because.... well, there it becomes a problem, doesn't it? Most of the batsmen had a good workout in one or other of the innings, the bowlers reduced the ICC XI to 164-9, England showed again that they bat all the way down, they chased 261 (a pretty good score to get in the 4th innings). Hey, Morgan didn't have a good game! So you write about him. This is the same side that beat the libing daylights out of Australia last year, jonesy. Too bad all you have to hang your hat on is a warm-up game, which England won. Tough noogies.

  • Omarrz on January 9, 2012, 15:28 GMT

    @Geoffrey Anthony Plumridge --> If this deep batting line up can only accumulate 261 for the loss of 7 batsmen in a Test innings, I along-with every other Pakistani fan won't mind that. And not to forget the 1st innings effort from the same deep batting line up.

  • on January 9, 2012, 15:26 GMT

    @Kruger81 i totally agree i also think pakistan will take heart form the number of wickets taken by spin

  • Elliott_Tree on January 9, 2012, 15:20 GMT

    @Sir_Freddie_Flintoff: I too worry about Morgan in Tests, nagging doubts about technique - but I really hope he comes good, he's such an exciting player when on song. At least with the current Eng selection policies he should get a (more than) fair chance to prove himself.

  • finch88 on January 9, 2012, 15:18 GMT

    @jonesey - Dear oh dear, your comments are always good for a laugh. Clearly, there's not enough matchwinners in this England team. But there were enough to paste the Aussies in their own backyard exactly a year ago. Where were the Aussie matchwinners in the Ashes? Warm up matches are hardly the best material to base a tough series on. I expect Pakistan to be a very good challenge for this England team. It's going to be attritional - we won't be able to blow them away like we did the Aussies, or India. Should make for some excellent cricket though.

  • Elliott_Tree on January 9, 2012, 15:16 GMT

    @jonesy2: yup, winning a game - clear way to show that you're not #1. Fabulous Aus logic :o)

  • YorkshirePudding on January 9, 2012, 15:14 GMT

    @ed.dixon, Totally agree with you about a Combined XI, maybe they should be part of warm up games for all those playing in the UAE, it would be interesting to see how Pakistan would have fared against them....I dont know if this was an ECB request or an ICC request, but it was definately the type of game england needed....I thought England were playing the Pakistan Presidents Board XI not the A-team, as Board XI's tend to be 3rd/4th pick players or those considered over the hill for tests.

  • CricketingStargazer on January 9, 2012, 15:13 GMT

    A lot of people are trying to make out that this was a Test match rather than a warm-up. Possibly it was for the Associate team (and rightly so, they don't get enough opportunities), but overall it was just part of England's preparation for the Test series, not the Tests themselves. It also was not the side that will play in the Tests. That said, I really am unconvinced, like some others, by Eoin Morgan at 6 in Tests. The argument is that he is a good player of spin, but he has not got big runs in Tests, nor has he in County cricket in recent years. He is a very good limited overs player and those at Middlesex were mightily surprised when he went straight into the Test side because they did not see him as a Test player. One thing that interests me is the way that Tim Bresnan has been sent straight home: obviously he is being saved for Sri Lanka. It will give Steve Finn a chance to come back in to the side, albeit at the cost of a slightly longer tail.

  • jonesy2 on January 9, 2012, 14:50 GMT

    holy moly england are showing that they are not worthy number 1's. lack of depth and matchwinning talent across the board is bizarre but not that surprising. an inept irishman at number 6 just sums it all up. hope i get my foxtel back and working so i can watch pakistan start a slippery slope for the poms

  • on January 9, 2012, 14:33 GMT

    Injury to Hamid Hassan cost match to them,let wait further 2 days to see English batsmen performance vs Pakistan A,It was tough for them in this match and wil b even tougher vs Pak A....Only one batsman shahzad gave them tough time and one bowler Hamid Hassan and both were from Afghanistan...Rest can be imgined..

  • CricketingStargazer on January 9, 2012, 14:18 GMT

    Just possibly the headline makes this look more dramatic than it was. England were scoring at will for most of the chase. The only real wobble was Eoin Morgan going cheaply again. Although KP went cheaply it was because he set out to whack the ball immediately, as is his wont, to show that he could hit bigger sixes than this successor as captain - maybe not the brightest cricket, but it's the way that he plays. Everything seemed to suggest that the whole idea was to enjoy themselves and to make sure everyone had a hit. With the scores level, only 6 wickets down and loads of overs to go it was not exactly a close-run thing! England did what they had to do and raised the intensity a little on the 3rd day. Expect to see the Test squad play in the second match and far greater intensity from the start.

  • Kruger81 on January 9, 2012, 14:12 GMT

    It would be unwise to reach conclusions about the outcome of Pak Vs England series based on this one match, but there are a few things which can said with some degree of certainty:

    - English batsmen found it difficult to get going in this match-adjusting to local conditions is key; - Chasing scores of over 250 in this series will require more work and resolve then it usually should; - Lower order runs will be very important in this series, as bowlers will get tired in the desert heat. Teams will have to be good at cleaning up the tail - Apart from Broad, not many other English bowlers impressed. (Pakistan would be happy that Bresnan will not be part of the English lineup.) - Associates should be given more 3-4 day games to help them get their standards up and compete with full members.

    With another warm-up game coming up in a couple of days, England will want to give a better batting performance.

  • on January 9, 2012, 14:10 GMT

    Yet another example of the depth of English batting. Pakistan have a serious problem. Shame about Bresnan though..

  • ed.dixon on January 9, 2012, 14:05 GMT

    I find myself in the highly unusual position of praising an ICC initiative because I really, really like the idea of the ICC Combined XI. It allows some very talented and interesting players who might not otherwise get the chance on the big stage in the longer format to shine - Viljoen and Shahzad to mention two, have had the match of their lives and have put England under some real pressure.

    I'd like to see some of the major boards offering them warm-up matches - it seems to be more relevant than 'The Vice-General-Governor-President's XI' stuff which gets served up as a pointless 3 day start to the major tours these days.

  • JG2704 on January 9, 2012, 13:57 GMT

    My team for the next match would be (if going for a 6/1/4 system) Strauss,Cook ,Trott,KP,Bell,Bopara,Prior,Swann,Bresnan,Tremlett,Monty - if playing a 5/1/5 system Strauss,Cook,Trott,KP,Bell,Morgan,Broad,Bresnan,Tremlett,Monty . I've not included Jimmy in either side because he is nailed on as a bowler. In an ideal world I'd like to see all our batsmen and all our bowlers get a game and possibly rest one or 2 of the top 5 batsmen and have Bopara and Morgan playing in the same side so we can see what each player does on the same surface against the same opposition. If we had more warm up games IMO that would be the way to go.But I think that it is important for the top 5 to get some more time in the middle. As for the 1st test 11 , well I'd still like to see a 5/1/5 line up although don't think they'll go that route so would see how the 11 performs in the next match and what conditions are going to be like etc

  • 5wombats on January 9, 2012, 13:51 GMT

    A win is a win. Can't do more than win a game. We thought it was a decent effort. The "ICC Combined XI" concept looks to have legs, maybe we will see this kind of thing again. Good time in the middle for the batsmen and good workout for the bowlers. Good job.

  • JG2704 on January 9, 2012, 13:43 GMT

    Well I'm waiting for the deluge of negative comments on here. I will however say that it is not a convincing victory and state the obvious that England need to up their game (particularly batting) in order to compete with Pakistan. Having said that there are positives in that we got the W and it's good to see Broad back and firing. Obviously we want to see improvement from our batting in the next game. Personally I'd like to see a 5/1/5 line up - dropping Morgan or even Morgan plus resting another to give Bopara a run out.If they stick with the same system I'd still like to see Bopara get a game.

  • AJ_Tiger86 on January 9, 2012, 13:42 GMT

    As it turned out, it was a good warm-up game for England. However, I'm worried about Morgan's form in test cricket. He hasn't fully adapted to test cricket yet. I think this will be the first series where we will really miss Collingwood.

  • Front-Foot-Lunge on January 9, 2012, 13:40 GMT

    England win by four wickets, and stump a few critics who don't know what quite to criticise them about now, these are funny times. :)

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

    I'm a bit puzzled by the end of the game.... England were on 254 at the end of 59 overs, but 3 balls later with the fall of Broad's wicket, were on 260, despite only a single having been scored by Davies. Was this a '5 runs for hitting the helmet' thing? Strangely, the bowler who is not actually bowling that over seems to have conceded the runs for it (Haq). Anyone got an explanation?

  • big_al_81 on January 9, 2012, 13:30 GMT

    We won in 3 days. Good to have a test and to knock any over-confidence out. Best thing is that the bowlers looked good which bodes well. Good to see the ICC make it an entertaining game by their sporting declaration. Too few teams take warm-up games seriously so I think it's been an OK start to the tour

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  • big_al_81 on January 9, 2012, 13:30 GMT

    We won in 3 days. Good to have a test and to knock any over-confidence out. Best thing is that the bowlers looked good which bodes well. Good to see the ICC make it an entertaining game by their sporting declaration. Too few teams take warm-up games seriously so I think it's been an OK start to the tour

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

    I'm a bit puzzled by the end of the game.... England were on 254 at the end of 59 overs, but 3 balls later with the fall of Broad's wicket, were on 260, despite only a single having been scored by Davies. Was this a '5 runs for hitting the helmet' thing? Strangely, the bowler who is not actually bowling that over seems to have conceded the runs for it (Haq). Anyone got an explanation?

  • Front-Foot-Lunge on January 9, 2012, 13:40 GMT

    England win by four wickets, and stump a few critics who don't know what quite to criticise them about now, these are funny times. :)

  • AJ_Tiger86 on January 9, 2012, 13:42 GMT

    As it turned out, it was a good warm-up game for England. However, I'm worried about Morgan's form in test cricket. He hasn't fully adapted to test cricket yet. I think this will be the first series where we will really miss Collingwood.

  • JG2704 on January 9, 2012, 13:43 GMT

    Well I'm waiting for the deluge of negative comments on here. I will however say that it is not a convincing victory and state the obvious that England need to up their game (particularly batting) in order to compete with Pakistan. Having said that there are positives in that we got the W and it's good to see Broad back and firing. Obviously we want to see improvement from our batting in the next game. Personally I'd like to see a 5/1/5 line up - dropping Morgan or even Morgan plus resting another to give Bopara a run out.If they stick with the same system I'd still like to see Bopara get a game.

  • 5wombats on January 9, 2012, 13:51 GMT

    A win is a win. Can't do more than win a game. We thought it was a decent effort. The "ICC Combined XI" concept looks to have legs, maybe we will see this kind of thing again. Good time in the middle for the batsmen and good workout for the bowlers. Good job.

  • JG2704 on January 9, 2012, 13:57 GMT

    My team for the next match would be (if going for a 6/1/4 system) Strauss,Cook ,Trott,KP,Bell,Bopara,Prior,Swann,Bresnan,Tremlett,Monty - if playing a 5/1/5 system Strauss,Cook,Trott,KP,Bell,Morgan,Broad,Bresnan,Tremlett,Monty . I've not included Jimmy in either side because he is nailed on as a bowler. In an ideal world I'd like to see all our batsmen and all our bowlers get a game and possibly rest one or 2 of the top 5 batsmen and have Bopara and Morgan playing in the same side so we can see what each player does on the same surface against the same opposition. If we had more warm up games IMO that would be the way to go.But I think that it is important for the top 5 to get some more time in the middle. As for the 1st test 11 , well I'd still like to see a 5/1/5 line up although don't think they'll go that route so would see how the 11 performs in the next match and what conditions are going to be like etc

  • ed.dixon on January 9, 2012, 14:05 GMT

    I find myself in the highly unusual position of praising an ICC initiative because I really, really like the idea of the ICC Combined XI. It allows some very talented and interesting players who might not otherwise get the chance on the big stage in the longer format to shine - Viljoen and Shahzad to mention two, have had the match of their lives and have put England under some real pressure.

    I'd like to see some of the major boards offering them warm-up matches - it seems to be more relevant than 'The Vice-General-Governor-President's XI' stuff which gets served up as a pointless 3 day start to the major tours these days.

  • on January 9, 2012, 14:10 GMT

    Yet another example of the depth of English batting. Pakistan have a serious problem. Shame about Bresnan though..

  • Kruger81 on January 9, 2012, 14:12 GMT

    It would be unwise to reach conclusions about the outcome of Pak Vs England series based on this one match, but there are a few things which can said with some degree of certainty:

    - English batsmen found it difficult to get going in this match-adjusting to local conditions is key; - Chasing scores of over 250 in this series will require more work and resolve then it usually should; - Lower order runs will be very important in this series, as bowlers will get tired in the desert heat. Teams will have to be good at cleaning up the tail - Apart from Broad, not many other English bowlers impressed. (Pakistan would be happy that Bresnan will not be part of the English lineup.) - Associates should be given more 3-4 day games to help them get their standards up and compete with full members.

    With another warm-up game coming up in a couple of days, England will want to give a better batting performance.