Cricket: Easy Ryder as humbled England end wicketless; CRICKET: NEW ZEALAND v ENGLAND.
England's progress as a one-day team was halted in brutal fashion after New Zealand inflicted on them one of the most comprehensive defeats in 37 years of playing limited-overs internationals.
Comprehensively outplayed in the opener to the five-match series at Wellington last Saturday - when New Zealand cruised to a sixwicket win with 20 overs to spare - England suffered an even bigger hammering in yesterday's second, day-night, match of the series. As in Wellington they lost three of their wickets to run outs.
Despite a promising start, England suffered a 10-wicket defeat for only the fourth time in their 485-match history of one-day internationals. New Zealand finished them off with a ferocious intensity which left captain Paul Collingwood looking almost shell-shocked.
Chasing a revised victory target of 165 despite dismissing England for 158 in a match reduced to 36 overs a side under the Duckworth-Lewis system, New Zealand opening batsmen Jessie Ryder - in only his second one-day international - and Brendon McCullum cut, pulled and drove their way to a lightning-quick record partnership.
Their 165-run stand off 109 balls was the biggest by New Zealand against England and perhaps emphasised the gulf between the two teams only a week after the tourists appeared set for a comfortable series having won the two Twenty20 Internationals in style.
Collingwood said: "We've had two good performances in the Twenty20 and when we came into the 50-overs form there was a lot of confidence - for some reason over the last two games it's been dented.
"When you've had two defeats like that confidence is going to get dented a little but what we've got to do in that dressing-room is regroup, talk about it and be honest with ourselves and hopefully come out and apply the sort of standards we set ourselves in one-day cricket recently.
"There are a lot of people in that dressingroom that are very, very hurt about the performance but we have to turn that around.
"The good thing is we've got three games left and we're still in with a chance. If this team does play to 100 per cent we can beat anybody on our day and we've got to get back to that."
Unlike Saturday, when England suffered a slow start, they got off to a flying start and reached a promising 85 for two after 15 overs when rain halted play for the next couple of hours.
It was a crucial point in the match with Alastair Cook and Kevin Pietersen well set at the crease.
The rain break enabled New Zealand to regroup and halt the momentum of England who capitulated in spectacular fashion.
Once again they were architects of their own downfall and suffered three run-outs, including Collingwood losing out when he took on Jacob Oram's powerful arm from deep third man.
Ravi Bopara ran out Cook just as the latter seemed capable of providing the anchor for a late charge after scoring 53 off 69 balls.
To compound Bopara's miserable day - he kept his place in an unchanged side despite pressure from in-form all-rounder Dimitri Mascarenhas - he managed to chip a leg-side full toss straight to be caught at deep mid-wicket with five overs of the innings remaining.
Stuart Broad batted intelligently to hit 31 off 23 balls but holed out to deep extra cover to leave England needing a spectacular improvement in their bowling to prevent another humiliating defeat.
Knowing they needed to put New Zealand under pressure by taking early wickets, they were given a promising start with Ryan Sidebottom delivering a maiden with the first over of their reply.
From there, though, it was all downhill with McCullum dropped off his second ball in the next over, wicketkeeper Phil Mustard being unable to hold a diving catch high to his right after he edged James Anderson behind.
Three overs later Ryder, on nine, was also given a reprieve when he edged Sidebottom low to Owais Shah at first slip. England had almost sealed their own downfall.
Ryder responded to his escape by hitting three boundaries in a row in the first over from Broad to bring up the 50 partnership off only 39 balls.
Fed a series of short-pitched deliveries, the New Zealand openers relished the opportunities to impress on a ground where they successfully chased down 347 against Australia last summer.
Broad was twice launched over mid-wicket for six by McCullum - who struck five sixes in all - while Ryder won the race to the halfcentury by putting Anderson into the stand with equal ferocity. It summed up England's day when Ryder was finally forced into a false stroke on 72 with only 15 needed for victory when he chipped a Sidebottom slower ball tamely back to the bowler only for another catch to be missed.
Three overs later McCullum ended the contest by driving Collingwood through extra cover for the 27th boundary of New Zealand's short innings to finish on 80 off 47 balls.
Man-of-the-match Ryder, who became so frustrated at being overlooked by New Zealand that he considered playing for Ireland last summer, finished on 79 off only 62 balls.
That left England aware that they need to find a way to restrict his powerful strokeplay if they are to prosper in the remainder of the series.
Jesse Ryder and Brendon McCullum (below) hitting England for six in a record partnership that sent the tourists to a fourth ten-wicket defeat in one-day cricket Pictures, REBECCA NADEN/PRESS ASSOCIATION
|Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback|
|Publication:||The Birmingham Post (England)|
|Date:||Feb 13, 2008|
|Previous Article:||Horse Racing: McCain's Pencil to write his name in large letters.|
|Next Article:||Cricket: West Zone's imposing reply after Lions slip; ENGLAND LIONS.|