PCB Patron’s XI v England XI (Day 1 thread)

Amjid Javed

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Ian Bell could be left sweating over his Test place, as England prepare to explore all options in their three-day warm-up match against a Pakistan Cricket Board Patron's XI, which gets underway at Rawalpindi tomorrow. Having secured permission to give an airing to all 14 members of his squad, England's coach, Duncan Fletcher, could be forced to re-assess the balance of his team, in a bid to cover for the absent Simon Jones.



Bell, who made a pair in the Ashes-clinching fifth Test at The Oval last month, is likely to be the fall-guy if, as seems quite possible at this stage, England decide to go into the first Test at Multan with two spinners. Alex Loudon, who has been impressive in the early nets sessions, is currently ahead of Shaun Udal in the tour pecking order, while Paul Collingwood has been generating good pace on the sluggish wickets, and is once again being considered as an extra bowling option.



"At this stage I would like to see all 14 take part, but we will have to use our heads," Fletcher told reporters at the team hotel. "We are getting mixed messages as to what sort of wicket is being prepared, so I will let them use this as a practice game and let them get an idea about how the wicket will play. We don't want to go out there with the wrong mindset."



England used just 12 players in total in last summer's Ashes series, and had it not been for Jones's untimely ankle injury, they would have fielded an unchanged 11 for all five Tests. All of a sudden, however, there are two places up for grabs, although Fletcher was understandably wary about talking up Loudon's prospects of a first international call-up.



"He's been impressing us," Fletcher admitted, having kept close tabs on Loudon's progress during the first days of the tour, "but at the end of the day we've got to look at whether it's too early [for him]. He came out here for just a bit of experience and to learn to work on his bowling.



"The other area is whether we use Collingwood as a bowler," Fletcher added. "That is quite critical and will be debated." Collingwood, whose Test debut came during England's last tour of the subcontinent - in Sri Lanka in December 2003 - was drafted in for the final Test against Australia last summer, and though he had little to show for his endeavours, he showed enough gumption in the most pressurised of circumstances to earn another opportunity.



Both he and Bell are handy fill-in bowlers in first-class cricket, although Collingwood has added an extra yard of pace in recent months, and troubled several batsmen during an energetic work-out this morning. "We still want to look at Bell as a batter, but that's probably the area we might have to look at at this stage," said Fletcher afterwards, which were strong words by his guarded standards.

There is still the best part of a fortnight until the Multan Test, so Fletcher refused to write off the prospects of the remaining members of the squad: James Anderson, Liam Plunkett and Shaun Udal. "I am very pleased that straightway the guys have shown the intent and intensity on this tour," he said. "They have put in some good work in the last three days."



He did not believe, however, that the glory of the Ashes victory was entirely out of their systems, and nor did he want it to be. "You've got to use it to your advantage," he explained, "because at the end of the day if you win the Ashes it can only give you confidence. We have to make sure we manage it though. What we don't want is overconfidence and complacency. If we have confidence and self-belief after beating Australia, then we can mix it with the best, because Pakistan is also a good side."



"It's a different scenario [to the Ashes]," Fletcher added. "It's difficult to beat Pakistan in Pakistan, but all tours away from home are very difficult. We've won at home, so now we've got to go and back up what we did in the summer
 
"We are getting mixed messages as to what sort of wicket is being prepared, so I will let them use this as a practice game and let them get an idea about how the wicket will play. We don't want to go out there with the wrong mindset."

Might be that when they talk about mixed messages -- it is related to the Pakistani squad which suggests both spin and pace helping wickets. If the poms get a bit confused and pick an unsuitable squad for atleast the first test .. it really would serve the purpose of picking a large squad as Pakistan did.

I would say that we should keep them guessing by preparing oddly opposite nature wickets in first and second practise matches. I am really happy that the match in Lahore is going to be played @ Bagh-e-Jinnah stadium and not Gadhafi stadium ... this disallows the English team to assess Gadhafi stadium picth which is to be used in the third test match.
 
Collingwood's pace has picked up recently I guess, he was faster than Hoggard in the last Ashes test, but I'm not too confident that his batting is worth a top 5 space. England's team may look more like a Pakistani team if we play both him and Loudon and end up batting down to 9!
 
I can't see both Loudon and Collingwood playing. It seems to me that one of these two may replace Bell depending upon how the England management perceive the wickets for each Test will play.
 
Awesome Anjum said:
England should be aware that this is a pretty strong side for a warmup.

lets hope hameed, kamal, bazid and co can give england bowlers a hard work out.

i hope irshad gives englands batsmen a good working over.
 
Amjid Javed said:
i hope irshad gives englands batsmen a good working over.
i'm really looking forward to that :D
 
I hope so AJ - last time round it seemed we didnt go at england hard enough in the warm ups - does this game start mon morning or tuesday morning? anyone?
 
Asim Kamal and Arshad Khan are the only Pak players playing in this match who form part of the 16 man squad.
 
RH said:
Who'll play out of Plunkett,Anderson, Udal, Loudon?

don't know. Who do you think?

I hope cricinfo do updates for this game. Don't want the usual wait until 6pm (when the updates man returns from his regular visit to the toilet) before finding out the score
 
RH said:
Who'll play out of Plunkett,Anderson, Udal, Loudon?

All of them, as England are being allowed to use all 14 squad players in this fixture.
 
They're all playing RH.. as far as I know everyone will get a go apart from Harmison and Flintoff.
 
Saj said:
All of them, as England are being allowed to use all 14 squad players in this fixture.

Just had to beat me to it didn't ya'?

It'll be interesting to see how Plunk and Jimmy do anyway..
 
Billy said:
Just had to beat me to it didn't ya'?

It'll be interesting to see how Plunk and Jimmy do anyway..

:D Billy. Its a good move by the ECB to get all the players some match practice, especially for those of them who have not previously experienced cricket in the sub continent.
 
Billy said:
They're all playing RH.. as far as I know everyone will get a go apart from Harmison and Flintoff.

Why not Harmy and Freddy? Surely they need practise to get used to conditions right?
 
Usman said:
Why not Harmy and Freddy? Surely they need practise to get used to conditions right?

They've been given a bit more time to be with their families after the superseries rubbish. As an England fan I've got no problem with that (as long as they play in the second warm up game obviously).
 
Billy, how do u rate Ashley Giles? What r his chances in Pak this time? Who do u see being his potential victims?
 
I really wouldn't know to be honest. He did well on the last tour to Pakistan so i think we can assume he likes bowling on Pakistani pitches but I think a lot depends on the patience of the Pakistani batsmen. If Gilo's bowling over the wicket on a leg stump line then they're going to have to think about the shots they play as a smear off the legs against the spin really wouldn't be too smart.
 
i'm not sure if the sqauds have been posted but here's the pak squad

Pakistan Cricket Board Patron's XI: Asher Zaidi, Yasir Hameed, Bazid Khan, Misbah-ul-Haq, Asim Kamal, Faisal Iqbal, Imran Tahir, Yasir Arafat, Zulqarnain, Mohammad Irshad, Arshad Khan, Mohammad Asif, Najaf Shah, Shehzad Malik.

interesting that asim kamal will play in the match probably because he's out of form at the moment...high touted batting prospect shehzad malik is also there, good to see irshad and najaf shah in there too....bichara misbah ul haq is always in these fringe sqauds hahahaha i think he's goona make a career out of it
 
Freddie is flying out from Manchester on PIA flight to Islamabad tomorrow morning.
 
offstump said:
i'm not sure if the sqauds have been posted but here's the pak squad

Pakistan Cricket Board Patron's XI: Asher Zaidi, Yasir Hameed, Bazid Khan, Misbah-ul-Haq, Asim Kamal, Faisal Iqbal, Imran Tahir, Yasir Arafat, Zulqarnain, Mohammad Irshad, Arshad Khan, Mohammad Asif, Najaf Shah, Shehzad Malik.

interesting that asim kamal will play in the match probably because he's out of form at the moment...high touted batting prospect shehzad malik is also there, good to see irshad and najaf shah in there too....bichara misbah ul haq is always in these fringe sqauds hahahaha i think he's goona make a career out of it

Bazid has been on the fringe for a while.
 
irshad..hope he proves to ppl onhere their belief in him considering - i havent seen him bowl and seems to be 2nd rate shoib akhtar to me only.

from what i have read..his bowling speed is exaggerated on this forum by his supporters..
 
seems like najaf is bowling realy tight line and length.
only 7 runs in 5 overs with 3 maiden and one wiket
 
41/1 now Irshad was taken out of the attack after five overs, Yasir Arafat comes and goes for 9 runs in the first over.
 
Marooned said:
Are u watching on tv nauman?

Nope following it on BBC website, Seems like another maiden by Najaf Shah, its Trescothick who seems to be on fire here.
 
Another wicket for Najaf Shah gets Vaughan out lbw for 9 :) Kevin Pieterson the new man in.
 
:))) i hope england play like this in test series.
 
England are only touring with 5 specialist batsmen? I find that a little strange..they could have done with an extra bat for the tour.
 
Is this a joke? 60/6 now.......arafat gets 3 to his name!!!!!

They really really suck.
 
Marooned said:
I'm guessing there's something in the track!

Or maybe......they actrually just suck:))) :D

England's best spinner at the crease.....but not exactly to spin the ball! :19:
 
Actually now that I remember Pindi is where we ran through Aus A. I think there might be something in that pitch.
 
Collingwood gets a duck too :)))
Is this how they'll try and whitewash us?
 
England rocked by Pakistani Pacers

Seems like Vaughan must be feeling the heat and a really good idea what exactly they are up against. Paksitani pacers have ripped English batting line and except for Trescothic no one else has entered into double figures. This is a really good start by this young Patron's XI. But they have to get them out at a low total and then need to take England's bowling apart. If they win the first game they will give a huge favor to Pakistan's XI.
 
I think these are premature celebrations, you never know what they might do to us in test matches.
 
where are u all gettin the updates from?
can the patronz xi play the test series who needs the real pak team when these boys can take care of the poms
 
Nauman said:
I think these are premature celebrations, you never know what they might do to us in test matches.

You kidding ? I have just cancelled my satellite subscription - cannot watch this onesided series....:31:
 
It seems like a greenish pindi pitch. Well done to the pacers though I wouldn't read too much into this game. I suspect Hoggard and co will enjoy it as well.
 
England made a dismal start to their opening tour match of the winter, slumping to 61-6 at lunch against a Patron's team in Pakistan.



Andrew Strauss (5) was the first man out as he shouldered a ball from Najaf Shah which hit off-stump.

Najaf accounted for captain Michael Vaughan (9) before Kevin Pietersen (2) was caught by Asim Kamal off Yasir Ali.

Yasir Arafat then took three wickets in 12 balls dismissing Paul Collingwood (0) Ian Bell (2) and Geraint Jones (4).

Collingwood went for a duck when he under-edged a pull at Arafat on to his middle-stump.

Bell was then caught by Zulqarnain Haider off Yasir before Jones disturbed his stumps off a Arafat delivery. The experienced Marcus Trescothick was left to battle at the crease alongside spinner Ashley Giles.



Earlier, Vaughan, who was passed fit to play despite suffering from an ear infection, went for lbw when he was trapped on the crease.

While Pietersen's eagerness again got the better of him as he speared a drvie on the up to be caught at gully. England, who are without Andrew Flintoff and Stephen Harmison who are yet to join the tour, had won the toss and elected to bat.
 
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