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The Index

A dual-purpose news report about England

Not sure what's going on with their T20 side? Help is at hand

Alan Tyers
15-Feb-2013
Samit Patel was run out by a direct hit, New Zealand v England, 2nd T20, Hamilton, February 12, 2013

Samit Patel: well-built allrounder / portly clod  •  Associated Press

Of late, the England T20 side has lurched alarmingly between brilliance and incompetence, and as the games are taking place on the other side of the world, it can be hard for the UK fan to follow what's going on. Here's a handy guide to the side's latest performance.
England cruised/crashed to victory/defeat today against New Zealand. The signs were clear from the outset that this would/wouldn't be England's day when Stuart Broad won the toss and confidently/bizarrely decided to bowl. England bowled like men possessed/men who had never seen a cricket ball before, and New Zealand could have easily been out for single figures/batted for an eternity without losing a wicket. A notable performance from Jade Dernbach saw him produce his full repertoire of variations/idiocy in taking a hatful of wickets/going wicketless while getting carted around the park/ getting carted around the park.
England once again fielded tigerishly/sloppily as they clung onto/flapped incompetently at a series of chances. The highlight/lowlight was Samit Patel's brilliant leaping catch/unfortunate miss when he tripped over the ball and dropped his isotonic chicken burger at extra cover.
When it came to their turn with the bat England began positively/soporifically. Their newfound ability to hit sixes/old failing of blocking ball after ball before slogging wildly was to the fore as they set off confidently/more in hope than expectation. Once the spinners came on, England's batsmen exploded/crumbled as they dominated/capitulated meekly against the non-turning ball. When the lower middle order came in to finish things off in style/pile on further embarrassment, England were soon celebrating/reeling from another big win/fiasco.
Speaking after the match, captain Stuart Broad said: "Obviously at this level it is about executing skills, and we absolutely did/didn't execute our skills in the important executing the skills department. We'll be looking to carry this momentum forward/put this game behind us in the next match and I'm confident that we can produce the same sort of performance/play like an entirely different side in that."

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