At The Oval, July 8. Zimbabwe won by five wickets. Toss: England. International debut: M. E. Trescothick.
Any momentum England gained from their heart-stopping defeat of West Indies in the Lord's Test seemed abruptly lost when the fall of the second English wicket sparked an all-too-familiar collapse. It had started so well: on debut, Marcus Trescothick - drafted in because Knight had broken a finger - hit an unflappable 79. Critics carped at a lack of foot movement, but his century partnership with Hick saved England from humiliation. The rest of the team batted with the conviction of rabbits dazzled by headlights, so mesmerised were they by Paul Strang's leg-spin. At one stage, he took three for five, and only a spirited 32 from Ealham helped England past 200. Zimbabwe's reply faltered as Caddick worked up early pace and aggression. But Campbell's return to form, hitting his first fifty for 14 one-day internationals, together with sterling work from the Flowers and errors in the outfield, saw Zimbabwe home with ten balls to spare. Stewart, captain in place of the injured Hussain, had nothing to celebrate other than surpassing Graham Gooch's England record of 125 limited-overs international appearances.
Man of the Match: A. D. R. Campbell. Attendance: 17,182; receipts £422,011.