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England look for improved show

Agencies
Jan 07, 2013 at 09:01pm IST

New Delhi: England XI will look to get a win under their belt when they take on Delhi in their final warm-up game ahead of the ODI series at the Ferozeshah Kotla here on Tuesday. England, back in India following the historic win in Tests, were surprised by India A in first practice game at the Palam Ground here on Sunday. The visitors failed to overcome the 225-run target in a match reduced to 39 overs-a-side due to bad light. Ian Bell, who opened the innings alongside Kevin Pietersen, looked in great touch scoring 91 off 89 balls.

Not many people turn up at the state team's net session the very next afternoon after having played a day-night game for the country but probably Gautam Gambhir has no option but to seriously think about ironing out the flaws that has crept into his batting.

The Delhi team will play the second practice game against the touring England side at the Feroz Shah Kotla ground which will be a day-night affair and Gambhir's presence raised obvious questions as to whether he would be playing the match. However, Delhi chief coach Vijay Dahiya clarified that neither Gambhir nor Virender Sehwag will be playing the match.

England look for improved show in final warm-up

Skipper Alastair Cook, who missed Sunday's warm-up tie due to cold, is expected to lead the side at Kotla.

"Gautam has just come to have some serious net practice. He is not playing in the match tomorrow. Viru had also called up to inform that he is not coming," Dahiya said as he kept a close watch on senior opener's batting. Gambhir batted for a lengthy duration twice but never looked comfortable against the left-arm pace duo of Ashish Nehra and Pradeep Sangwan. Sangwan, who is unlikely to play on Tuesday, was seen beating Gambhir's bat on a number of occasions.

"Look, when you score runs, no one looks at your flaws but people talk about it only when you don't get runs. If you ask me what's the problem with Gautam, it is the lack of decisiveness in his footwork," the former India glovesman said. On the match, Dahiya said that it will be a good opportunity for some of the Delhi players to showcase their skills as it's an official List A match.

"When you are playing a quality side like England, there shouldn't be any lack of motivation even though we haven't qualified for the knock-outs of Ranji Trophy. A good knock or a good spell might help a player to come into prominence," Dahiya said.

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