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Monday, 24 June, 2002, 16:39 GMT 17:39 UK
Wales humble England
James played a series of excellent strokes
Steve James takes the aerial route for Wales
One-day match, Cardiff:
Wales 191-2 (40.3 overs) beat England 189-9 (50 overs) by eight wickets


England were left red-faced ahead of the NatWest Series against India and Sri Lanka as skipper Steve James steered Wales to a comprehensive victory at Sophia Gardens.

The home side, including nine Glamorgan players, one from Somerset and South African guest star Jacques Kallis, took full advantage after an indisciplined batting display by England.

Robert Croft hammered 30 off 26 balls and James shared a second wicket stand of 132 with David Hemp (57) as the Welsh cruised home with nine and a half overs to spare.

James finished on 83 not out, a 110-ball innings which included nine boundaries, and England's only consolation was the performance of fast bowler James Kirtley, who took two for 37.

Sloppy start

Wales were in control of the match after England tossed away their first four wickets with some cavalier batting.

Alec Stewart drives through the covers
Stewart tried to inject some urgency for England

Acting captain Marcus Trescothick hit four successive boundaries off Andrew Davies in making a rapid 38, but Nick Knight, Michael Vaughan and Graham Thorpe all fell cheaply.

Paul Collingwood and Ronnie Irani steadied the innings, but had to settle for ones and twos as Somerset paceman Steffan Jones found an excellent line and length.

Collingwood was bowled by Croft for 22 as the spinner made a point to the England selectors, who have ignored him since last summer, in the best possible way.

His second wicket followed as Irani (13) drilled a catch to mid-on and finished with two for 36 from his 10 overs.

Coming together at 104 for six, Alec Stewart and Andrew Flintoff salvaged some pride for England with a stand of 58, but two run outs towards the end of the innings, including Stewart for 39, kept the total under 200.

Hoggard suffers

Croft clubs a boundary off Hoggard
Some of Croft's shots were not in the coaching manual

Matthew Hoggard endured the ignominy of conceding 24 from a 10-ball over, which included four no-balls, as Croft began the Welsh reply with all-out attack.

He was dropped by Irani, but Kirtley cut short his fusillade of shots with an excellent yorker.

It had no effect on James, who played some glorious strokes on both sides of the wicket without ever resorting to slogging, a reminder of why he was deemed worthy of two Test caps in 1998.

Hemp endured some difficult moments when Flintoff dug the ball in short, but supported his captain well and collected a six when he deposited off-spinner Jeremy Snape over square leg.

The left-hander also hit four boundaries before Kirtley found a way through his defences, but by then it was far too late for England.


Wales: S P James (Capt), R D B Croft, D L Hemp, J H Kallis (S Africa), M P Maynard, A Dale, M J Powell, M A Wallace (Wkt), S D Thomas, P S Jones (Somerset), A P Davies.

England: N V Knight, M E Trescothick (Capt), M P Vaughan, G P Thorpe, A J Stewart (Wkt), A Flintoff, R C Irani, P D Collingwood, J N Snape, R J Kirtley, M J Hoggard.

Umpires: A A Jones and T E Jesty

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
BBC Five Live's Pat Murphy
"England just didn't get enough runs"
Wales opening batsman David Hemp
"I don't think too much should be read into this result"
NatWest series: England, India, Sri Lanka

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