What did we learn from England’s performance against India?

Dejected but England showed they can fight when they need toLast Tuesday’s ragged performance against the Netherlands left many people doubting whether England were a serious contender for this year’s World Cup. However, after yesterday’s epic tie with India, opinions have changed.

The result actually left England with mixed emotions. After the abject performance against the Dutch, they put in a much improved display but will be disappointed that they didn’t win the game. With eight overs remaining chasing India’s total of 338, England were cruising needing just 59 runs and with eight wickets in hand but ended up scarping a tie off the final ball.

So what did we learn from the encounter? The fact that England are disappointed with a tie against the tournament favourites is surely a good thing. However, they know that they can’t afford to let another victory slip away again. Ultimately, only big hitting from the tail saved England from snatching defeat from the jaws of victory. The batting powerplay turned out to be a disaster with England losing six wickets thanks to some rash shots. It seemed that the batsmen thought that every ball in the five over period needed to be hit for six. However, England were in such a comfortable position when the powerplay was taken that they didn’t need to take many risks. In the end, poor decision making nearly led to a defeat.

The form of Jimmy Anderson will also continue to be a cause for concern. The Lancashire born bowler looks a shadow of the player that tormented Australia in the Ashes. Yesterday, he conceded 91 runs, the most an England bowler has conceded in an innings in World Cup history. It followed a shabby display against the Dutch when he conceded 72 runs and if he doesn’t perform well against Ireland on Wednesday, then his place in the side may be under pressure.

However, there were plenty of positives to take away from the game. Strauss’ innings was exceptional and showed how much he has come on as an ODI batsman. He is now the top scorer at the World Cup having scored 246 runs in two innings and has demonstrated in his two knocks that he can get England off to a flyer. In addition, the decision to move Kevin Pietersen to opener has shored up the batting line-up while Tim Bresnan’s bowling was very impressive, picking up his maiden five wicket haul in ODIs.

The most encouraging thing though was the fight that England showed chasing India’s total. A few years ago, they would have looked at the 338 runs and failed to believe that they could win the game so the majority of yesterday’s chase was very pleasing. England know that a few areas need to be addressed but if they maintain the same level of doggedness that they showed against India, then they could well exceed people’s expectations in this year’s tournament.

Free Bet