Rain stumps Australia's quest for T20 victory

Updated: 31 August 2009 07:57 IST

The first Twenty20 international between England and Australia was abandoned on Sunday after persistent rain fell over Old Trafford.

Rain stumps Australia's quest for T20 victory

Manchester:

Rain thwarted Australia's bid to win a first Twenty20 international in six matches after their series opener against England ended in a no-result washout at Old Trafford on Sunday.

Australia were well on top, having reduced England to four for two in the second over, in pursuit of a victory target of 146, when a heavy downpour stopped play.

Although England needed only to bat for five overs for a result to be declared under the Duckworth-Lewis method for weather-affected fixtures, a fresh burst of rain as the umpires were inspecting the ground prevented play resuming by the scheduled cut-off time of 1710GMT.

The second and final match of this series is at Old Trafford on Tuesday.

Australia, who had lost their previous five Twenty20 matches, were indebted to Cameron White's 55 for a total of 145 for four after losing the toss in overcast conditions.

White, dropped on 12 by debutant Joe Denly, shared a fourth-wicket stand of 78 with Michael Clarke, Australia's captain in the absence of resting regular skipper Ricky Ponting.

The duo came together after England captain Paul Collingwood took two wickets in three balls to leave Australia struggling at 54 for three in the ninth over.

England fielding their 13th opening pair in 22 Twenty20 internationals, saw Denly and Ravi Bopara manage just one run between them.

Denly, who top-scored with 67 on Thursday in his one-day international debut as England beat Ireland by three runs in Belfast, fell for a golden duck when, trying to hook Brett Lee, he was beaten for pace and gave a gentle catch to Nathan Hauritz at square leg.

Fast bowler Lee had taken only three balls to strike in his first international appearance against England this tour after missing the Ashes with a side strain.

Bopara, dropped after a sequence of low scores from the Test side for England's Ashes-clinching victory at the Oval last week, where a 197-run win gave the hosts take the series 2-1, did not stay long either.

Trying to steer left-arm quick Mitchell Johnson through the offside, Bopara failed to get over the top of the ball and was well caught by Shane Watson at first slip.

Earlier White, who didn't feature in the Ashes, completed a maiden fifty at this level off 33 balls when he launched Ryan Sidebottom for his third six before holing out off Ashes hero Stuart Broad to Collingwood in the covers.

Collingwood led from the front in the absence of Test captain Andrew Strauss - who has opted out of Twenty20 internationals - with two wickets for 20 runs from his maximum four overs.

The medium-pacer had David Warner lbw on the sweep for 33 and, two balls later, David Hussey was stumped on the walk by Matt Prior for nought.

Australia could have been 69 for four in the 12th over but White was dropped by a diving Denly at backward point off fast bowler James Anderson.



Topics : Cricket Sreesanth
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