Wed, Aug 29, 2007 - Page 19 News List

England defeat India by 42 runs

DOING THE BUSINESS India had hoped England would struggle without Andrew Flintoff, but this proved not to be the case as Ian Bell led the way with his score of 79

AFP , BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND

England's Paul Collingwood celebrates taking an Indian wicket in Birmingham, England, on Monday.

PHOTO: AFP

England captain Paul Collingwood believes his team are well on the way to developing the "fearless attitude" required for one-day cricket after beating India by 42 runs at Edgbaston on Monday.

They may have been without injured all-rounder Andrew Flintoff and lost the hard-hitting Dimitri Mascarenhas during the warm-up, but England still posted a highly competitive 281 for eight.

Ian Bell led the way with 79, his third score of fifty or more this series and his best in any international match on his Warwickshire home ground.

He followed that up with two sharp catches and a run-out, with England's all-round fielding far superior to that of India.

Collingwood, renowned as a player who has made the most of his ability, puts a high price on character and there was plenty of that quality on show from fast bowler Chris Tremlett.

The 2m-tall Hampshire seamer, whose nine overs during India's nine-run win in Friday's second one-dayer at Bristol cost 73 runs, had figures of none for 20 off two at Edgbaston.

But he came back to claim the key wickets of India captain Rahul Dravid (56) and Sourav Ganguly (72) after the experienced duo had threatened to take the game away from England with a third-wicket stand of 104 in 115 balls.

"We have always said the best way to play one-day cricket is with a fearless attitude -- it is getting filtered into our bloodstream -- but it is still early doors, there are only three games gone so we won't get too carried away," Collingwood told reporters.

"We are getting scores of around 300 all the time and that shows we are improving. But in many ways I was as satisfied with this performance as I was at the Rose Bowl [where England won last week's series opener by 104 runs]," he said.

"I know that was what I called near-perfect but today [Monday] the efforts from all the lads were exceptional," Collingwood said.

Tremlett has been criticized for being too much of a "gentle giant" but Collingwood said: "What you have seen is that he's got the character to bounce back. We had a lot of faith in him, he didn't start off too well but came back and got those really important wickets at an important time."

"Things like that, and bowlers like that, can change a game. I think we saw in the Test series [against India] he has moved on leaps and bounds. He's improving all the time, he's a huge guy and he just needs to get that aggression going sometimes. He showed signs of that today," Collingwood said.

Flintoff, who injured his right knee at Bristol, would love to return in front of his Lancashire home crowd at Old Trafford, where the fourth match of this series takes place tomorrow.

But Collingwood said England, with the Twenty20 World Cup and a one-day series in Sri Lanka on the horizon, would not jeopardize Flintoff's long-term fitness for short-term gain.

"You always miss Freddie but the way the guys played was fantastic," Collingwood said.

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