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England frittered away a great start

india Updated: Jun 07, 2009 02:08 IST
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The ICC T20 World Cup began on a sensational note with England losing the opening match to the Netherlands. To be fair, the Dutch team has more players with first-class experience than other non-Test and non-ODI teams.

They have lots of cricketers playing in England or in Australia. That experience was evident as Holland showed great determination even when the situation looked bleak. England were not able to capitalise on the quick start that was given to them by Bopara and Wright, and they almost went to sleep for a few overs after the 10th over.

By the time they woke up from their slumber, they were well behind the target they would have set for themselves by the end of the third quarter of their innings.

To end up with 162 after that superb start was pathetic and it gave the Dutch hope. Their reply was a mixed bag with batsmen showing their inexperience by throwing away their wickets unnecessarily, and it almost cost them the match. However, it was England who panicked more, especially in the last over when not only run-outs were missed but also a catch dropped.

What this means, of course, is that, for the host nation to stay in the tournament they have to win against Pakistan. The latter will be all the more keen to put the massive loss in the warm-up against India behind and so will go for a win.

Pakistan have always had mercurial players who can change the course of the game and if they click then they are a very attractive side to watch. The problem area for them is fielding, for though they have a young side, they have some slow movers.

The start to the tournament has been electric and it will have made established Test nations wary of the underdogs. That should mean better cricket in the coming days.