Mohali: Describing the cold weather here as “very English”, Ian Bell on Monday said that the England pacers will have to exploit the conditions well in order to level the five-match ODI series when they take on India in the fourth and penultimate match, on Wednesday.
Trailing 1-2, England are in a must-win situation to keep the series alive. “The conditions are more familiar than we had in the last couple of games. Obviously, it is nice to get out a little bit of breeze, that surely helps everyone,” Bell said after his team’s net session, at the PCA stadium, on Monday.
“Hopefully, in the next couple of days we will get an opportunity to put up a performance like we did in the first ODI and hopefully we will level the series 2-2,” he added. Admitting that England played poor cricket in the previous ODI, in Ranchi, where they were bundled out for a paltry 155 that the hosts chased down comfortably, Bell said that they would have to make amends in the batting department.
“...If we are going to get 150, that’s not going to challenge India at all in these conditions. We have to get a platform… Our middle order is very powerful and destructive. We need to get a foundation and a platform for our big hitters in the middle, which can keep us going.
“We have been a little disappointed with the way we have played the last two games. We haven’t really put up performances that can challenge India. Like in any game, whether we win or lose, we take the positives and try to work out on the areas where we can get better and improve,” he said.
“May be we did not adapt to the conditions quite well in the last game,” Bell added.
He, however, does not see India having any edge in the Mohali game by virtue of being ahead in the series.
“We went to the first ODI losing two warm-up games. We have to keep believing that we can win and we have shown that we can do that. But we have to do our basics right and all the eleven players will have to perform and play well. “India are a fantastic team under these conditions and if we don’t perform well as a group, then we are going to get beaten,” admitted Bell.
Bell, meanwhile, heaped praise on India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni and his young team.
“He (Dhoni) showed us in Kochi that if you have wickets in the last 15 overs, it is hard for the bowlers to stop scoring runs. We haven’t capitalised on that,” said Bell.
“(As far as the young inexperienced pacers, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Shami Ahmed are concerned) they have the ability to swing the ball both ways and have fantastic skills. Ravindra Jadeja is very consistent with bat and ball. I think he is a very good one-day all-rounder. He has managed to pick up wickets in the middle, which slows the batting down... We take him very seriously as a front line spinner.” (PTI)