Match Report: Canada v England
England made a bright start as initially Ed Joyce and then captain Michael Vaughan played a range of shots against the Canadian opening attack. The early bowling included a number of wides and some no-balls, mostly by Andy Cummins. He did beat the bat a couple of times, but England moved past the 100 mark without loss. There were a few costly overs, and some balls that beat the bat in the early going, and a phase where Canada began to cut down the run rate. Ed Joyce did well against the faster bowling, but England captain Michael Vaughan became the senior partner as Canada switched to spin through Davison.
Abdool Samad made the breakthrough having Vaughan caught at point by John Davison. Vaughan had driven powerfully for no run on the previous ball, stopped in the covers by Ian Billcliff. The England skipper had looked better at keeping the score moving against the Canadian slower bowlers than Joyce. Vaughan's 45 runs included 7x4 in 64 balls.
Ian Bell joined Joyce and the pair took the score to 153 runs. Then Bell scooped a ball from Sunil Dhaniram and was caught by George Codrington. Kevin Pieterson drove for four to open his account, but he lost soon Joyce, bowled by Dhaniram trying a reverse sweep (160 runs for 3 wickets). Joyce had made 66 runs off 103 balls (4x4, 1x6). His six came when advancing down the track to drive Codrington straight in the 19th over. He drove low to Desmond Chumney in the covers off Samad in the previous over but a possible chance was not taken.
Pietersen then steered the ball back to Dhaniram and was caught & bowled for 5 runs to end the 36th over.
Paul Collingwood and Ravi Bopara then settled the innings and began to break out as the innings moved into the later stages. Bopara made a promising 29 off 30 balls (4x4). He replaced the suspended Freddie Flintoff, now identified as one ot the England players out at a night club after the loss to New Zealand on Friday.
Jamie Dalrymple soon fell to a diving catch by wicketkeeper Ashish Bagai when Andy Cummins returned to bowl the late overs from the broadcast end of the ground. He made just 2 runs. Paul Nixon provided a major boost with 23 runs off just 8 balls (4x4, 1x6), using the reverse sweep to great effect. Collingwood made a fine 62 runs not out off 48 balls (4x4, 1x6).
England's Barmy Army showed unrest, including slow-handclaps, as Joyce and Bell batted through the middle stages. They were much happier with the closing efforts of Collingwood, Bopara and Nixon.
Canada's Sunil Dhaniram ended with 3 wickets for 41 runs off ten overs from his slow-left arm bowling. Off-spinner Davison conceded 32 runs off his ten overs and was the most economic of the Canadian bowlers.
Geoff Barnett was first out for Canada, leaving a ball from Liam Plunkett that clipped the top of the off-stump. He made 7 runs. Ashish Bagai went next with the total on 22 runs. He steered a high ball to wide third man and was caught. He made six. This was a blow due to his prolific winter form, but was the second recent time he has been out in this way. The other was to a finer third man against Bangladesh in Antigua. He stored 6 runs, including a nice cover boundary.
Skipper John Davison had returned to an opening batsman role in this match. He made 21 runs, with some nice shots, but he drove straight to the cover boundary sweeper off James Anderson to leave the side 3 wickets down for 51 runs.
Ian Billcliff hit a fine dirve to 6 to long-on off Monty Panesar but soon afterwards he becane Ravi Bopara's first world cup victim. Billcliff was bowled by Bopara for 20. That made it 64 runs for 4 wickets at the end of 17 overs.
Samad was then joined by Mulla. The scoring was steadied and the scoring rate began to climb, not enough to smell victory, but the potential was growing. Mulla posted his first ODI score of over 50 runs, passing that mark without a six. He then showed his hitting power with a bix six over midwicket. Sadly, from a Canadian perspective, he went to drive a ball from Bopara and was out stumped by a fast piece of work from Nixon. This verdict came after a vidoe review by the 3rd umpire.
Their stand helped Canada towards its best ever CWC total score. Mulla had made 58 runs (60 balls, 7x4and 1x6). Samad soon followed, lbw to Panesar. He scored 36 runs (67 balls, 1x4, 1x6).
Their stand of 96 for the 5th wicket was a new Canadian ODI record, beating the 95 of Desmond Chumney and Don Maxwell against the Netherlands att Potchefstroom in November 2006. It was also a ground record for Beausejour in an ODI.
Sunil Dhaniram made a bright 30 runs in the later going (33 balls, 3x4), and Desmond Chumney, after scoring 6 runs in 21 balls, hit a straight 6 in a burst of 9 runs in 3 balls. He ended on 27 runs not out. It was another step up the progress ladder. Canada will hope for a good showing against the higher-rated New Zealand side on Thursday.
Paul Collingwood named MOM for his fine effort steering England to their 279 run total. He also bowled 9 overs for 41 runs, which was reasonably economic in the context of this match.