Tuesday, November 08, 2005

England in Pakistan 6

England slumped to defeat against Pakistan A by six wickets - all three wickets to fall today taken by Freddie.

However, the real concern is the likely absence from Saturday's Test of Michael Vaughan - the prognosis does not sound encouraging. Vaughan's influence on the side is difficult to understate - his record bears favourable comparison with any England captain, and his innovative fielding positions and astute bowling changes are unlikely to be matched by the solid but uninspiring Marcus Trescothick. The middle order also looks far more prone to collapse without him - fortunate that we bat down to 9, 'cos we may need to.

England's lineup is therefore expected to be

Trecothick (c), Strauss, Bell, Pieterson, Collingwood, Flintoff, Jones, Giles, Udal, Hoggard, Harmison.

Still fancy our chances for the series, but given Vaughan's fitness and the lack of batting form displayed thus far, my prediction is now a come-from-behind 2-1 victory, rather than the 3-0 thumping I expected a fortnight ago.

No comments: