Campbell hits out at Lloyd again

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The Independent Online
The Zimbabwe captain, Alistair Campbell, took another verbal swipe at the England coach, David Lloyd, when his team arrived in Johannesburg yesterday for a triangular one-day series against South Africa and India.

Campbell, clearly still niggled by Lloyd's comments that England had "murdered" Zimbabwe in last month's drawn second Test in Bulawayo, said: "I think we've improved a lot over the last 12 months. We had a tough apprenticeship in the subcontinent and that stood us in good stead against England.

"All this 'We murdered them and they know it' business is really ridiculous coming from a grown man. At the end of the day, we drew the Test series and won the one-dayers 3-0.

"We've heard a lot about how badly they played and about how they've been called the worst side to leave England's shores but they just didn't want to give us credit for playing good cricket.

"We intend to go out and play positive cricket against India and South Africa. If we do that then there is no reason why we can't do very well again, and all the guys know that."

Zimbabwe play one warm-up match today under floodlights against North West in Fochville. Their first match in the tournament is against South Africa at Centurion Park on Saturday.

Meanwhile in Auckland, Dominic Cork reported no real change to his back complaint. But England's No 1 bowler will have no idea about how the injury is progressing until he is given a fitness test by the physiotherapist Wayne Morton, who said Cork was feeling more comfortable and was continuing to have treatment on what is feared to be torn tissue.

England travelled from Hamilton to Auckland yesterday but otherwise had a day off following their two-and-a-half day trouncing of Northern Districts.

Cork will warm up with the England squad when they gather for net practice in Auckland this morning - and it will not be until then that he will know whether he has a chance of playing in Friday's first Test against New Zealand. The initial diagnosis of Cork's back pain was that it seemed serious, but he is refusing to be pessimistic.

"I'm feeling OK today, but at the moment all I can do is wait and see how I am at practice," Cork said.