Mohali: Describing the cold weather here as "very English", opener Ian Bell on Monday said that the England pacers will have to exploit the conditions well in order to level the five-match ODI series when they take on India in the fourth and penultimate match on Wednesday. Trailing 1-2, England are in a must-win situation here to keep the series alive.
"(The condition) more familiar than we had in the last couple of games. Obviously, it is nice to get out a little bit of breeze, sure helps everyone. Hopefully, in the next couple of days we will get an opportunity to put up performance like we did in the first ODI and hopefully go 2-2 (in the series)," Bell said after his team's net session at the PCA stadium here on Monday.
Admitting that England played poor cricket in the previous ODI at Ranchi, where they were bundled out for paltry 155 that the hosts chased down comfortably, Bell said they would have to make amends ahead of the fourth one-dayer here.
"...If we are going to get 150, that's not going to challenge India at all in these conditions. We have to get a platform, our middle order is very powerful and destructive. We need to get foundation and a platform for our big hitters in the middle, which can keep us going. We have been a little bit disappointed with the way we have played (the last two games). We haven't really put up performance to challenge India at all. Like any game, whether we win or lose, we take our positive and try to work out on areas where we can get better and improve," he said.
The batsman, however, does not see India having any edge in the Mohali game by virtue of being ahead in the series.
"May be, we did not adapt to the conditions quite well in the last game," Bell added. We went to the first ODI losing two warm up games. We have to keep believing that we can win and we have shown that we can do that. But we have to do our basics right and all XI players have to perform and play well. India are a fantastic team under these conditions and if we don't perform well as a group, then we are going to get beaten," admitted Bell.
Asked about a few umpiring decisions not going their way, Bell said, "I guess so, but you can't control that. There is not any point having qualms about that. We just haven't played well enough. Obviously, we don't want bad decisions, but we just haven't played well enough."
With Mohali wicket likely to assist the bowlers, Bell said it would put all the more responsibility on the batsmen to play cautiously.
"If there is a little bit in the wicket, you can't come on and play massively aggressive shots. Ideally, we want to get platform, but we have been losing wickets in the middle."
Bell, meanwhile, heaped praise on India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni and his young team.
"He (Dhoni) showed us in Kochi that if you have wickets in the last 15 overs, it is hard for the bowlers to stop scoring runs. We haven't capitalised on that. (As far as the young inexperienced pacers, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Shami Ahmed are concerned) they have the ability to swing the ball both ways and have fantastic skills. Ravindra Jadeja is very consistent with bat and ball. I think he is a very good one-day all-rounder. He has managed to pick up wickets in the middle, which slows the batting down...we take him very seriously as a front line spinner."
Bell also lauded Bell on his team coach, Ashley Giles saying, "I think our preparations (for the tour) have been outstanding. We could have not asked for more. I think in last two games, we just haven't done our basics right."