India v England
T20 Preview: England- 29th October 2011
Preview by Laura Dodds
So the one-day series is over and done with, and from an English point of view thank heavens for that! It's been a torrid tour so far, and it all started around two weeks ago in Hyderabad where England were outplayed by an India side that had not long returned from a 4-0 Test whitewash and a drubbing in the ODI series back in England.
The final ODI defeat was the toughest for the England team to take with captain Alastair Cook saying his team were 'blown away' by the new look Indian side who were without superstars such as Virender Sehwag and Sachin Tendulkar.
Ahead of the lone T20 game on Saturday, England will be hoping to put the one-day series behind them and look to leave India having won a game, something India did not do during the summer. Also with the new ICC T20 rankings coming out this week, and England spearheading those rankings, they will want to put in a performance to justify their number 1 spot, along with developing their skills in the sub-continent with the T20 World Cup being held in Sri Lanka next year. However they will be without number 1 ranked T20 batsmen Eoin Morgan who missed the tour of India with a shoulder injury and captain Stuart Broad who is recovering from a tricep injury picked up in the ODI series back in England. Kevin Pietersen is a major doubt after breaking his thumb in the 4th ODI in Mumbai, although he and England are hopeful of him passing a fitness test tomorrow.
With Broad unavailable it gives Graeme Swann a chance to captain the side again, something which could put him even more in the spotlight after his recent comments about Kevin Pietersen's leadership skills in 2008/2009. Swann captained a young England side in a 2-match T20 series against the West Indies at the back of September and while the first game couldn't have went better; the second could even top Monday's batting display as the worst collapse of the past decade. He will be hoping for a repeat of his first game in charge when England romped to 10 wicket victory.
One major point of England's tour of India has been the lack of discipline on show between both teams, not only between each team, but between the England camp itself. In the 2nd ODI, the match referee pulled both captains about their teams on-field behaviour after India captain MS Dhoni said 'There were lots of gestures flowing around in the field'. Tim Bresnan was also fined 7.5% of his match-fee for showing dissent towards umpire Sudhir Asnani. It's not just England who has been questioned on their behaviour. In the final ODI, as the players were shaking hands, Ravindra Jadeja was seen to walk back over to England batsman Ian Bell and say something which provoked others from the England team to get involved, although coaches and players interviewed after the game say they weren’t aware of the event.
Overall England will be looking to finish the tour on some sort of high, and put in a good performance on Saturday to give both themselves, and the people at home something to smile about.