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Last Updated: Saturday, 21 October 2006, 16:06 GMT 17:06 UK
Aussies overpower hapless England
Champions Trophy, Jaipur, Australia 170-4 (36.5 overs) bt England 169 (45 overs) by six wickets

Martyn's classy strokeplay carried Australia towards victory
Martyn punished some woeful bowling as Australia cantered home

England were left facing an early exit from the Champions Trophy after a six-wicket hammering by Australia.

Their batting failed again in Jaipur, as only Ian Bell (43) and Andrew Strauss (56) shone in a total of 169.

Damien Martyn (78) then timed the ball superbly to punish some woeful bowling, particularly from Steve Harmison.

Sajid Mahmood and James Anderson did reduce Australia to 34-3 but Mike Hussey, who hit a patient 32, saw them home with nearly 13 overs to spare.

Even a victory over West Indies is now unlikely to secure England a semi-final place - and few would argue they deserve one after a second successive collapse.

They were shot out for 125 by India at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium last Sunday and failed to improve significantly on a better surface.

Bell proved he was in the right mood for the Ashes Test series, finding the middle of the bat regularly to punish any error in line from Australia.

606: DEBATE
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Only excellent fielding prevented him picking up more than seven boundaries in his 60-ball knock, although Martyn dropped a straightforward chance at long-off off Glenn McGrath when he was on 23.

But once the young right-hander drove Shane Watson to Mike Hussey at cover the Aussies called pretty much all the shots.

Kevin Pietersen was promoted ahead of skipper Andrew Flintoff but both gave away their wickets to Mitchell Johnson and Watson - who finished with three wickets each - after being softened up by short deliveries.

Strauss was never at his fluent best, with opportunities to cut and pull limited, and after reaching his 12th one-day off 78 balls edged Andrew Symonds to wicket-keeper Adam Gilchrist.

Michael Yardy was unlucky to be given out down the leg-side off Watson but Jamie Dalrymple and Chris Read deserved little sympathy for tame dismissals.

Kevin Pietersen
Pietersen 's brief innings lasted just six deliveries

England's indiscipline carried over to new-ball pair Anderson and Mahmood, who provided a steady diet of loose deliveries for Gilchrist and Watson to latch on to.

It took a floodlight failure to disturb the Australians' concentration and Mahmood profited to knock out Gilchrist's off-stump and induce an edge from Ricky Ponting, who went for a single.

When Watson (21) missed an ugly attempted pull and was bowled by Anderson, England sensed the game might still be theirs for the taking.

But Martyn doused their collective fire with a high-class innings, studded with wristy strokes and magnificent placement.

Harmison's first three deliveries were dispatched for fours as he conceded 26 off two overs and Mahmood also came in for severe punishment.

With Hussey content to play a risk-free supporting role, Martyn celebrated his 35th birthday by reaching his fifty off, appropriately enough, 35 balls.

He gave one difficult chance to Collingwood at point off Anderson before edging Harmison behind - but the damage had been well and truly done by then.



SEE ALSO
England slump to defeat in India
15 Oct 06 |  Cricket
ICC Champions Trophy 2006
18 Oct 06 |  Future tour dates


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