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England in high spirits as Brown floors Bangladesh

By Peter Deeley in Dhaka
24 October 1998

ENGLAND'S one-day team completed their preparations for the Wills International Cup, the knock-out mini world cup, here yesterday with their second win in 72 hours, this time by 36 runs over the host nation, Bangladesh.

Following the defeat of Zimbabwe, England are showing the benefits of a long settling-in period in the high humidity here and now take on South Africa - who arrived only on Thursday - in the quarter-finals tomorrow. Zimbabwe meet New Zealand today in the one preliminary-round match.

The losers in all these games will turn tail and go home. As the England captain, Adam Hollioake, pointed out: ``You must do it on the day in this competition. There's no room for any mistakes.''

This may have been only a warm-up game at a ground some 15 miles from the capital, but it brought a crowd of nearly 10,000 - an indication of the cup fever which is gripping this country, with tickets for the games selling for far above their face value.

The only blot on England's week has been a hamstring injury to Matthew Fleming which is likely to keep him out of consideration for the first match.

He was the one player to miss out yesterday, the other 13 all taking some part in the game. England made a poor start and were 68 for four on a pitch of uneven bounce, with Nick Knight, the opener, contributing 27 of those runs before the Lancashire pairing of Graham Lloyd and Neil Fairbrother added 98 in 18 overs.

Lloyd was the more aggressive, scoring 61 off 66 balls, including seven boundaries. Fairbrother's 48 came in 72 deliveries and he hit one six. All the batsmen struggled against the slow left-arm of Mohammad Rafique, who took five for 47 in nine overs.

Bangladesh - who are not playing in the knock-out cup - made the better start, reaching 103 for two by the 28th of their 50 overs. Chris Silverwood was expensive, going for 18 runs in his two overs, but Dougie Brown then broke the back of the home side's resistance by taking four for eight in 30 balls.

Bangladesh then batted out their overs with their captain, Aminul Islam, scoring an unbeaten 60.

Brown finished with four for 15 in seven overs, Ian Austin two for 18 in eight and Ashley Giles three for 45 in his full ration of 10 overs. Hollioake said: ``Considering the fact that we hadn't played any cricket for a month until we came here it's been an excellent start. Every bowler bowled and everyone batted.''

South Africa hoped to have Shaun Pollock fit for the tournament but the all-rounder pulled out at the last moment with back trouble and they have come with only 13 players.

Allan Donald is at home resting for the coming West Indies series, Lance Klusener is recovering from an operation on his left heel which necessitated his early departure from England in the summer and Gary Kirsten has broken a finger on his left hand.

The South African captain, Hansie Cronje, admitted that this would be a weakened side but pointed to the fact that eight of the team - under Pollock - were fresh from winning the gold medal in the Commonwealth Games. ``We are sure that success will be carried over to this tournament,'' he said.

WILLS INTERNATIONAL CUP SCHEDULE.- Prelim rd, Oct 24: New Zealand v Zimbabwe. Qtr-finals, Oct 25: England v South Africa. Oct 26: Sri Lanka v New Zealand/Zimbabwe. Oct 28: India v Australia. Oct 29: Pakistan v West Indies. Semi-finals, Oct 30: England/South Africa v Sri Lanka/New Zealand/Zimbabwe. Oct 31: India/Australia v Pakistan/West Indies. Nov 1: Final. Nov 2: Reserve day.

Source: The Electronic Telegraph
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