India look to humiliate England, wrap-up series
Birmingham: An unassailable lead in their pocket, India would look to clinch the one-day series against England by putting up another dominating display when the two sides square off in the fourth cricket one-dayer here tomorrow.
The visitors have taken an unassailable 2-0 lead in the series after 133-run (D/L) and six-wicket wins in Cardiff and Nottingham in the second and third ODIs respectively. This was after the first ODI at Bristol was abandoned due to incessant rain.
At Edgbaston then, the Men in Blue will be hoping to wrap things up with one match remaining in the series. Their confidence will stem from the simple fact that England have been unable to challenge them in the two matches played so far.
On current evidence, in limited-overs cricket, the hosts appear to be a completely different animal that takes the field in the Test arena. Like every other team they too are building up to the 2015 World Cup in Australia-New Zealand, but they are beset with problems.
A lot of quarters have criticised Alastair Cook’s batting at the top of the order but along with Alex Hales, he has put up two fifty partnerships in two games.
That isn’t the trouble though. His captaincy has been under the scanner and while the 3-1 series win helped silence his critics, even his closest supporters — read Graeme Swann — do not believe that he should lead his country in the World Cup. However, that is done and dusted, he will do so, and England’s problems mount from there.
Cook’s captaincy is quite unimaginative in the sense that he doesn’t feel the need to play two off-spinners in the same eleven.
This conventional thinking has always been England’s downfall in limited-overs cricket, and that is the summation of their problems.