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India’s trial by fire today

England will be the first team to confront the wounded champions at Lord’s, knowing that a win will dump India out of the World Cup and do their own chances a world of good. Arjun Sen reports.Special Coverage

cricket Updated: Jun 14, 2009 15:08 IST
Arjun Sen

India hardly have any time to reflect on Friday’s disappointing seven-wicket loss against the West Indies. For, Sunday is their trial by fire.

England will be the first team to confront the wounded champions at Lord’s, knowing that a win will dump India out of the World Cup and do their own chances a world of good.

It is a massive game for both after kicking off the SuperEights campaign with defeats. India have to pick themselves up from Friday’s and devise a plan to stop the home team.

“Losing has not crossed our mind, we're in a very positive frame of mind going into the match,” newly appointed vice-captain Yuvraj Singh said. “We’ve done well against them and I've enjoyed playing against England. It gives us a lot of confidence.”

It won’t be easy, though; India are yet to win at Lord’s this summer.

Dhoni hasn’t had a good time of it lately, both on and off the field. He was off-colour with the bat on Friday, while the endless questioning of the alleged rift hasn’t helped either.

England have the firepower to counter India’s attack, none more potent than Kevin Pietersen. Death bowling too is a genuine cause of concern with Irfan Pathan and Ishant Sharma going for plenty.

Another bad day at the office on Sunday would really make it a summer to forget.