How refreshing to wake up, check Cricinfo, and see that England have won!! I had a momentary panic at 5:20 this morning when I read the top headline referring to England men's battering in the latest ODI before realising that wasn't the women's result. Thank goodness for that....I was worried when Australia came back from 30odd for 5 in their 1st innings to gain a 1st innings lead, but a great partnership in the 2nd innings between Lottie Edwards and Jenny Gunn and some inspired bowling led to a 61 run victory.
Now to consider the men's ODI team which the terrible headline on Cricinfo was referring to. Watching the start of the match was painful from an England perspective - yes early wickets happen but Root got stuck as if in a Test match. Those that knock Pietersen should consider what the result might have been had he been batting 3 rather than Root. (I agree with this piece from Tom Moody saying how much England need Pietersen.) With the squad they're allowed to pick from (i.e. missing Pietersen/Broad) for the next match I'd be going for Carberry at 3 if they insist on that balance to the side or, ideally, to drop Root for Briggs or Tredwell. If they're worried about the batting they could drop Rankin for Woakes to ensure they bat down to 8 with Bresnan and Jordan to follow, plus the spinner. But unless he simply can't hit the cut strip I'd give Finn a go at Rankin's expense- he can't do much worse!
England seem to have settled on the number 6 slot for Bopara in ODIs but he's an option at 3 if England rejig the order and feel there's no one else for 3. I didn't agree with any of the pre-match chat from the commentators/experts that England were a bowler light on the weekend - Bopara is a bowler in ODIs....his record compares well to Stokes and Bresnan (although in Bresnan's case he had to bowl in powerplays, and Stokes is very light on games played, but you get my point). Bopara's bowling stats also compare well with Woakes incidentally.
Maybe a little of the resilience shown by England women can rub off on the men - I'm not holding my breath but it would help if they picked the best side.