Ian Baker - Kieswetter shines for England
23 Jun 2010 - 11:32:32
As an Englishman, I don't think there are very many sweeter wins than victory over Australia. But Tuesday's four wicket win over Ricky Ponting's side in the first ODI was made extra special because of the confidence and high class cricket currently being exhibited by the Three Lions.
Every aspect of the side's performance at the moment is outstanding - fielding, bowling and batting. Given how well the side are playing as a team, it seems wrong to single out particular playes.
And although Eoin Morgan scored the unbeaten century that ultimately won England the match at the Rose Bowl, I'm going to focus on someone else.
A few months ago, England were relying on the likes of Joe Denly and Jonathan Trott to get the runs at the top of the order. With no disrespect to the pair, they failed. Runs were not coming and certainly not quickly enough to scare the best.
Andy Flower made the decision to select Craig Kieswetter as opener for the one-day series in Bangladesh. And neither the Somerset wonder kid or England have looked back since.
Flower's men have lost just once in 12 games that Kieswetter has played backing up his influence to the team. Andrew Strauss, Alastair Cook and Michael Lumb have all partnered him and Kieswetter has linked up extremely well with everyone he's been asked to bat with.
He can hit some monster sixes as evidenced by the blows he struck at Edinburgh last Saturday. A first ODI in Bangladesh was followed up by a fine fifty against Scotland and he impressed during his 38 on Tuesday.
It might not sound much but Kieswetter's consistent scores at quick rates take the pressure off fine players like Morgan. Kieswetter is an affable chap. A very polite, level-headed young man - it is clear that he is keeping his head on the ground.
But it's very difficult not to get excited by the 22-year-old. He can hit the ball a very long way and seems to know just when to play the very big ones. Not since his county colleague Marcus Trescothick have we seen such an electric opening batsman for England.
At this rate he looks set to lead his country to many more wins - hopefully against Australia.
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