Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Scores settled for England

A couple of days back, England would have left the field cursing whatever came their way, with the rains, the Duckworth Lewis method taking a greater share of that. That was the match which should have seen the England team jumping in joy after first putting up a mammoth total of 191 on the board which was till date the highest team total as far as this edition of the world T20 is concerned. But, their joy never seemed to last long enough with rain taking away the game away from them when they deserved to win no matter what the odds had to say.

However, if that was the match which England lost and should have won, yesterday a major upset was averted for England when they were on the verge of creating history for the bad and wrong reasons. The match would have seen the England captain being invited first before the Irish captain to the presentation ceremony. England would have become the first team in the world to have lost two games to non test playing nations. England had earlier in the previous edition of the world T20 lost to Netherlands in the initial phase of the tournament in 2009. Luckily they survived with a win against Pakistan later.

So far England are the only team in the world who have lost a game in the T20 world cup against a team which doesn't have a history of playing test matches. Of course, Australia had lost a match to Zimbabwe in the inaugural edition of the world T20 and the West Indies to Bangladesh. But, Zimbabwe has a history of playing test cricket and Bangladesh has been doing the same since almost a decade or so. It would not have been wrong to bet on Ireland in yesterday's match. A total of 120 stands nowhere in T20 cricket and Ireland have entered the super eight stage after beating a test playing nation in 2009.

Had the match not been affected by rain, I bet Ireland would have ended up victorious. As mentioned earlier a target of 120 and that too in a T20 game can land a team nowhere. There could have been a freak chance of West Indies overcoming the huge target of 191 imposed by England, given the home team advantage and a decent batting line up. But there was not even that freak chance for England to win against Ireland in yesterday's game. The bad fortune that was bought by rain in the earlier game against West Indies happened to be a boon in disguise for England in yesterday's game.

England may probably be forgiven for losing against the West Indies but not to Ireland which would have been their 2nd such callous approach to the game.

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