|Scorecard:||South Africa v England|
|Player:||HM Amla, PD Collingwood, IJL Trott|
|Event:||England in South Africa 2009/10|
Paul Collingwood and Jonathan Trott were the stars for England as the tourists started their 50-over campaign with a victory in comprehiensive style. The duo first bowled well and alongside good performances by other bowlers restricted South Africa to a modest 250 and then combined together to put 162 runs for the third wicket after England were in a dicey situation during the chase. The touring side won with 7 wickets in hand and more than four overs to spare which gives the Proteas a lot to think about before taking the field for the third ODI.
Chasing 251 to win, England started cautiously and South African seamers to start off did not give much away. Jonathan Trott after producing a crucial role with the ball, came up with a brilliant batting show to start proceedings of the chase.
Skipper Andrew Strauss could not last long, and trying to force the pace Kevin Pietersen also fell. KP tried slogging Albie Morkel and lost his leg stump for 4 from seven balls. In came Paul Collingwood and his sedate start which converted into a 162 run-stand with Trott laid the foundation of the 1-0 lead in the series.
When the duo combined, Morkel and Ryan McLaren were doing good in tandem and at that stage runs were hard to come by. The good thing about the partnership was that neither batsman hurried and made sure they take the runs when the bowlers allowed that. It didn't mean the run-rate dropped because every now and then South African bowlers kept providing oppurtunities to hit a boundary.
English record man Collingwood who has now played in 171 ODIs, one more than England's stalwart of yesteryear, Alec Stewart, made the day his own and scored a century in the winning effort. Jonathan Trott also had a golden chance to reach his 100 but was very disappointed and showed his frustration by bashing his pad with his bat as he left the pitch but nonetheless his first 50-over match against his former countrymen was a triumph nonetheless.
Eoin Morgan came in at the fall of his wicket and in his swashbuckling style scored 24 of only 18 deliveries to finish the game in comprehensive style with a boundary. The match though was well and truly over when South Africa finished with only 250 runs on a good batting strip.
Earlier in the day England skipper Andrew Strauss won the toss and elected to a field first on a track which had been disturbed a bit by the rains in the last five days. Seven days ago on this very ground, South Africa had piled 241 in 20 over but 5 odd days of rain has added a coating of glue to the surface, and it looked difficult while the home side batted. Hashim Amla looked the best on course and his cool composure and decent strokeplay made sure South Africa posted a competitive total.
Amla and Alviro Petersen scored half centuries but failure of other batsmen restricted a huge total. England's varied seam attack did well and restricted them to a very mangeable 250 for 9 in their 50 overs in the second ODI at Centurion. Though Anderson and Sajid Mahmood could not do a lot with the new ball but Strauss's use of Paul Collingwood and Jonathan Trott won him the game. England also showed a lot of determination on the field and though they missed chances there were times the tourists saved certain boundaries.
At the start, Graeme Smith, who made whiskering 88 from 44 balls in last Sunday's T20, struggled this time around. Though he started off picking up two fours from successive deliveries as Anderson strayed onto his pads, he fell for the off-side trap that was installed for him. A slip was placed and the cramped skipper edged a good-length delivery straight to the fielder.
AB de Villiers was the next man to get out. He in any case has a pathetic record against this very opposition. He carried his reputation this time as well and didn't hang around long. Anderson offered him a little width and the right-hander got after it only to find Collingwood at backward point, who jumped to his left and pounced it with both hands.
Then there was a stand which kind of brought the hosts back in the game, the run-rate though dipped. JP Duminy had come in and began his innings with grace and style. Sajid Mahmood was welcomed with a pair of punched drives down the ground.
Duminy continued with his trademark elegance and now started to assault legspinner, Adil Rashid. The leggie gave away 27 runs in three overs, which included a reverse-sweep for four and a slog-sweep over midwicket from consecutive deliveries from Duminy. From the other end though Luke Wright had settled in for an impressive spell and this proved Duminy's nemesis who feathered a nick through to Matt Prior, and departed for 41 from 47 balls.
It then was all about the trio of Wright, Collingwood and Trott as reduced pace became a panacea on the track. Even the settled Amla was disturbed by the lack of pace. South Africa in the next ten overs could find the boundary only once as Petersen advanced down the wicket to Collingwood and smacked him for a six.
Wickets then started to tumble as Albie Morkel who could be good post the 45th over came in as early as the 34th but could only survive for 11 deliveries in that situation. His fall at 165 for 6 brought Petersen and Mark Boucher together for a unique rebuilding project at that stage.
Peterson finally fell to Bresnan on Bresnan's fourth ball of the batting Powerplay. His wicket started a little procession as Roelof van der Merwe clipped Anderson to midwicket, and Dale Steyn hoisted Mahmood to wide mid-on. It was Boucher who kept the runs ticking until the end and finished with 30 not out.