England seek Providence redemption
England are praying for a rain-free match against Ireland as they try to turn their Duckworth-Lewis frustration into a perfect performance at Guyana’s Providence Stadium.
Captain Paul Collingwood last night called for urgent attention to be turned on the D/L method in Twenty20 cricket, after his team had ended up eight-wicket losers against West Indies.
They therefore need to beat Ireland at the same venue tonight - or progress via a washout - to join the Windies as Group D qualifiers for the ICC World Twenty20 Super Eights stage.
There was little England could be criticised for yesterday after Eoin Morgan and Luke Wright, who struck 55 and 45 not out respectively, helped them to an imposing 191 for five.
But West Indies captain Chris Gayle had chosen to field first, in anticipation of rain and probable favour from D/L recalculations.
So it turned out as West Indies scraped to a revised target of 60 in six overs, with one ball to spare.
Collingwood’s team must therefore train their sights on beating Ireland, and the captain is simply hoping rain does not intervene again.
“We don’t know what’s going to happen with the weather. But we pray for a 20-over game. We hope if we get that we can win,” he said.
Collingwood believes there will have to be some amendments to current D/L formulae for the shortest format.
“There’s a major problem with this Duckworth-Lewis in this form of the game,” he added.
“I’ve got no problems with it in the 50-over form. But I know it’s made us very frustrated here. It certainly has to be revised for this form of the game.
“I’m no mathematician; I really don’t know what the equation should be. But you’re certainly backs against the wall when it works out like that.
“We played a near-perfect game, and lost. The only thing we are frustrated about is the Duckworth-Lewis equation.”
The outcome means England face a series of ‘finals’ to stay in with a chance of winning an International Cricket Council tournament for the first time.
“I guess it puts a little bit of added pressure on us,” added Collingwood. “We know what we’ve got to do. If we win six games now, we win a World Cup.
Gayle, meanwhile, can be satisfied his team are through to the next stage of their own competition after back-to-back group wins.
He sympathised with England but confirmed he had got his team’s tactics spot on.
“We knew that the weather was going to play a part, so the first five overs, obviously, can determine the game,” he said.
“So we decided to go out and see what we could get out of the first five overs. The target was actually 43, I think, at one stage, and the updated calculation went in our favour.
“After the rain, we knew we were most likely to win the game from there on.”