England left with only moral victory

Cricket: England 291-8; India 96-5 Match abandoned; no result

The spring drought may have ended, but England will have to wait a little longer to see if they can end theirs after persistent rain washed out the first Texaco Trophy match. With the Bank Holiday weekend starting, the game was officially abandoned at 3.55pm, the police warning both teams of a potential seven-hour journey time to Leeds, where the second match of this series is scheduled to begin today.

For a result to be salvaged yesterday, India needed to face a minimum of 25 overs. Had that been possible, a reduced target of 146 would have been set and India would have had to score another 50 runs off 47 balls to win. A not impossible task with players like Mohammad Azharuddin at the crease, but no easy stroll with your side already five wickets down for 96.

There is little doubt then that it was England who came away with what honours were available from a part-completed match and David Lloyd, England's new coach, can look back on a satisfying first performance, despite it being only half realised.

Apart from the two decisive contributions of Graeme Hick with the bat and Chris Lewis with the ball, the most successful of the deliberate tactical gambits was the extension of the batting by packing the side with all- rounders. With Hick conducting the ebullient late-order trio of Ronnie Irani, Mark Ealham and Lewis, 144 runs was added in the final 14 overs.

Curiously, none of the three debutants looked overawed, and if Alistair Brown's booming style was not the instant success it was built up to be, some credit must be given to India's opening bowlers who exploited a helpful pitch with great skill.

Brown knows he was not brought in to bat like Geoff Boycott and he showed a lot of pluck by persevering with his big-hitting game plan despite being cut in half by Javagal Srinath's nip-backers. Despite Neil Smith's enterprising cameo at No 3, Brown is certain to be given another go today, though an overcast Headingley is not usually an ideal place to take bowlers on.

The man of the match was Chris Lewis, whose 21-ball burst of 4 for 6 was the moment of the match. "Thursday was very exciting for me," he said yesterday. "It's nice to be back in the England set-up after such a long while. I'm more focused on cricket and my move to London has helped. But as far as I'm aware, this is not a new Chris Lewis."

It is hard not to agree, for Lewis has produced performances on this scale before, only to disappear for a sabbatical care of Bupa. If nothing has changed, then England would be unwise to base any bowling plans around him this summer, an honour that - over the past year at least - has been bestowed upon Dominic Cork.

Over that year, Cork has proved he is England's premier Test match bowler. It is however, not something that readily applies in one-day cricket and if England are to tinker with their team for today, Cork may be the one to miss out. On Thursday, his two overs with the new ball cost 20 runs as he persisted with a leg-stump attack against Sachin Tendulkar, probably the world's best leg-side player.

Cork is a hot-headed performer, whose aggression and full-length outswing are unsuited to the nagging straightness required by one-day cricket. Because of the low angle of his arm and because he gets in so close to the stumps, a straight ball from Cork comes from middle and leg, an angle that provides all but the tailenders with a four course meal to tuck into.

A straight ball from Lewis' high action tends to come in from outside the off-stump, where even the best tend not to take liberties. Unless Cork can work out another strategy, he is better off saving himself for the Tests.

News
people
News
A survey carried out by Sainsbury's Finance found 20% of new university students have never washed their own clothes, while 14% cannot even boil an egg
science...and the results are not as pointless as that sounds
News
i100
News
politicsIs David Cameron trying to prove he's down with the kids?
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Sauce Recruitment: Partnership Sales Executive - TV

competitive + benefits: Sauce Recruitment: An award-winning global multi-media...

Sauce Recruitment: Account Director

£26017.21 - £32521.19 per annum + OTE $90,000: Sauce Recruitment: My client is...

Recruitment Genius: Linux Systems Administrator

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This leading provider of UK Magento hosting so...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Development Manager - North Kent - OTE £19K

£16000 - £19000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A unique opportunity has arisen...

Day In a Page

Woman who was sent to three Nazi death camps describes how she escaped the gas chamber

Auschwitz liberation 70th anniversary

Woman sent to three Nazi death camps describes surviving gas chamber
DSK, Dodo the Pimp, and the Carlton Hotel

The inside track on France's trial of the year

Dominique Strauss-Kahn, Dodo the Pimp, and the Carlton Hotel:
As provocative now as they ever were

Sarah Kane season

Why her plays are as provocative now as when they were written
Murder of Japanese hostage has grim echoes of a killing in Iraq 11 years ago

Murder of Japanese hostage has grim echoes of another killing

Japanese mood was against what was seen as irresponsible trips to a vicious war zone
Syria crisis: Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more refugees as one young mother tells of torture by Assad regime

Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more Syrian refugees

One young mother tells of torture by Assad regime
The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back – with promising results

The enemy within

People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

Survivors of the Nazi concentration camp remember its horror, 70 years on
Autumn/winter menswear 2015: The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore

Autumn/winter menswear 2015

The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore
'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

Army general planning to come out
Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

Homeless Veterans appeal

As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

Smash hit go under the hammer

It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

The geeks who rocked the world

A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea