Just a few words on yesterday’s ODI. I’m feeling a little crook today (the combination of a tummy upset and sinusitis isn’t pleasant) so I’ll keep it brief.
Yesterday’s win in the cricket was absolutely superb. It was most unexpected too – at least from my perspective.
Whereas our openers were a liability in the first match, they all but won the game yesterday. Kudos to them. Alex Hales scored his first ODI hundred – he played excellently and certainly rammed the critics’ words down their throats – and Jason Roy played an absolute gem of an innings too. He looks seriously talented and took all the pressure off his partner.
Where Roy needs to improve is converting some of these cameos into something more substantial and gratifying. Hopefully he’ll learn from Hales’ knock, which was pretty much the complete one day innings.
I must say I still have doubts that Hales can succeed at the top of the order against quality pace attacks in test cricket – I guess we’ll find out in a couple of months – but this innings will give him a massive confidence boost. Good luck to him.
Our bowlers also looked like a completely different proposition yesterday. I don’t need to tell you why. It’s obvious: the ball swung. When they can get some movement, they’re no longer cannon fodder. For David Willey it was just like Beggars’ Canyon back home.
Of course, it also helps if you’ve got a good total on the board to defend. It’s a shame we didn’t make over 300 with the start we had, but you can’t have everything I suppose. A little bird told me that England score less runs in the last ten overs than any side in the world other than Zimbabwe. Can that be right? It wouldn’t surprise me.
This series is set up rather nicely now. I said before the series started that contests between two poor / average teams can often be fascinating, and so it’s proving. You never know what you’re going to get from either side. England and Pakistan’s performances are oscillating rather like my stomach.