Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

England Drama; Caddick's Late Burst Opens Door to the Final

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

England Drama; Caddick's Late Burst Opens Door to the Final

Article excerpt


ANDREW CADDICK kept his cool and England took their chances beneath the floodlights here as Nasser Hussain's team moved to within touching distance of the triangular tournament finals.

Hussain had seen two of his young fast bowlers, Steve Harmison and Jimmy Anderson, buckle under pressure as Sri Lanka threatened to reach a target of 280.

But when England's captain called on Caddick at a crucial stage, the 34-year-old veteran used all his skill and experience to set up a 19-run win.

First he broke a menacing sixth-wicket stand of 93 by forcing dangerman Kumar Sangakkara to miscue a pull. Then the Somerset seamer removed Sri Lanka's last recognised batsman, Russel Arnold, to finish with the magnificent figures of four for 34 from 10 almost immaculate overs.

England, who had been hanging on by their fingertips until Caddick was recalled for his final blast, brushed aside their opponents' tailenders to give the margin a deceptively comfortable look.

But, crucially, they now need to do no more than avoid a heavy defeat by Australia here on Sunday to qualify for next week's best-of-three finals against the World Cup holders.

One point from a routine loss will freeze out Sri Lanka.

It was Caddick, though, who looked ice-cool this evening. He had begun well, dismissing Marvan Atapattu and Hashan Tillekeratne-during his first spell, but saw Anderson and Harmison both struggle.

Anderson twice had to be taken out of the firing line as seven overs cost 54 runs. But at least he returned right at the end to pick up two cheap wickets and seal England's victory.

For the hapless Harmison, there was nothing but misery. The Durham fast bowler, who conceded 20 wides during his previous two outings, began erratically again here and was removed from the attack with figures of 2-0-27-0. …

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