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England v West Indies, World Cup 2011, Chennai

James Tredwell celebrates one of his early breakthroughs AFP

James Tredwell has had to wait an inordinate amount of time to make his mark in one-day cricket, but when his chance came, he fronted up with the performance of a lifetime. It was way back in 2007 that he took part in his first England tour, but his only appearance this winter had been a long-forgotten ODI in Hobart, and throughout the World Cup he was resigned to making the drinks, as the selectors fiddled with the under-performing duo of Michael Yardy and Paul Collingwood.

Until now, that is. In a do-or-die fixture in which victory was the only option, Tredwell fronted up with a ballsy performance with both bat and ball. First he helped reboot England's innings from a sketchy 151 for 6, adding 41 for the seventh wicket with Graeme Swann, then he came to the party, to use Duncan Fletcher's favourite phrase with the superb figures of 4 for 48.

In three previous appearances, Tredwell had never claimed an ODI wicket, but he waited just five deliveries to make his mark as Chris Gayle's blistering 43 from 21 balls was ended by a front-foot lbw. One over later, he had his second, when Devon Smith got in a muddle against a yorker, and allowed Matt Prior to pull off a sharp stumping as he scooped the rolling ball in his right glove. And Tredwell made it three wickets in four overs when Darren Bravo was caught in two minds as he pushed outside off, for Strauss at slip to cling onto a sharp low catch.

It was his last-gasp intervention that was the most crucial part of his performance, however. At 222 for 6, Andre Russell was taking the game away from England, but Tredwell nailed him lbw in his final over as he attempted to work a single to leg. One ball later, Sulieman Benn survived a referral by the skin of his bails as he padded up to a straight one, but thanks to Tredwell, England had the bit between their teeth and the desperation to make their opportunity count.