England’s World Cup defence is in tatters after they had been humiliated by Afghanistan at the Feroz Shah Kotla. The tournament, it be exact, obligatory a shock to spice things up. However few anticipated this game to present it.
A chastening 69-whisk defeat leaves Jos Buttler’s aspect potentially desiring to win five of their final six video games to reach the last four – and South Africa, India, Australia and Pakistan lie in wait. On this evidence, England will fight to beat any of them.
This was a fine night for Afghanistan, and an astronomical feather in the cap of their English coach Jonathan Trott. In 17 outdated World Cup suits, their handiest victims had been Scotland. To humble the world champions is on another stage.
Such was England’s ineptitude, however, that it was if the white-ball revolution location in circulate eight years in the past by Eoin Morgan never took location.
Where was the cleverness with the ball? The ability to react to circumstance? The relentless aggression with the bat? Buttler has played down the significance of his aspect’s descent to fifth in the rankings. However England’s alright-on-the-night mentality has produced two defeats out of three. Their air of mystery goes, if no longer gone.
Jos Buttler (exact kind) seen his England aspect suffer one of the biggest shocks in World Cup history
Afghanistan obtained honest their 2nd-ever match at a World Cup on a memorable night in Delhi
Afghanistan opener Rahmanullah Gurbaz scored a spectacular 80 off honest 57 balls to location the tone
The tone was location by the game’s opening shipping, which the increasingly hapless Chris Woakes speared down leg, and Buttler allowed to sneak by means of for five wides.
And it persevered as Afghanistan opener Rahmanullah Gurbaz flayed a spectacular 80 off 57 balls sooner than being whisk out by a inappropriate name from his captain, Hashmatullah Shahidi. The spinners threatened to tilt the match England’s design, honest for extra sloppiness – including a overlooked stumping by Buttler – to allow Afghanistan to flip 190 for six into 284.
Four days earlier, towards the identical opponents at the identical venue, India had easily knocked off 273 in 35 overs. However the suspicion that England are no longer the team they had been – and even what they negate they are – grew in the future of a lame batting display in which handiest Harry Brook emerged with credit ranking. If and when Ben Stokes returns towards South Africa in Mumbai on Saturday, it will no longer be Brook who makes design.
Afghanistan had been wonderful in pulling off their first win over England in any layout. However this was a night to conjure up reminiscences of the scandalous frail occasions, and a 50-over World Cup defeat to deplorable with Zimbabwe at Albury in 1992, Australia at Port Elizabeth in 2003, Ireland at Bangalore in 2011 and Bangladesh at Adelaide in 2015.
The warning signs occupy been there. They pushed aside the 9-wicket hammering by Fresh Zealand as an aberration, sooner than Bangladesh failed to punish them for a lame final 10 overs with the bat in Dharamshala.
However the conservatism that as soon as blighted English cricket seems to be to occupy returned. England had a raffle right here to blood either Gus Atkinson or David Willey, or each and every. As a change, Woakes – one of the heroes of the Ashes comeback – has made himself unselectable, together with Sam Curran.
Woakes has now taken two for 135 at this World Cup, and Curran two for 122. Their blended figures right here had been 8-0-87-0. All the while, Atkinson has been firing rockets in the nets under the approving survey of bowling coach David Saker.
Woakes’ first three overs cost 31, and when Buttler brought him attend for the twenty fifth, his 2nd ball was whacked over long-on by Azmatullah Omarzai. He was no longer considered but again. Curran, in the period in-between, disappeared for 26 in his first two, then 18 in another towards the pause.
Harry Brook was the handiest England batter to point to any fluency, scoring 66 runs as their batting say collapsed
England struggled to tackle Afghanistan’s spinners, with Mujeeb Ur Rahman (above) taking three wickets together with Rashid Khan
Reece Topley bowled a correct opening spell, though hearts had been in mouths when he briefly left the subject after hurting his exact kind knee on the boundary. Imprint Wooden deserved better than two for 50.
However the mid-innings success of the spinners, led by Adil Rashid and strengthened by Liam Livingstone, made it all the more glossy that Buttler gave handiest four overs to Root’s off-breaks: figures of one for 19 felt unfulfilled. Whereas England’s three spinners took five for 94 off 24 overs, their four seamers managed three for 189 off 25.5. Admire batting first, it was a misreading of the circumstances.
Buttler then failed to stump Afghanistan wicketkeeper Ikram Alikhil off Livingstone handiest 23 runs into his eventual 58, and England’s nous deserted them entirely at the death.
The chase purchased off to a inappropriate open as Rod Tucker upheld a marginal lbw to dispatch Jonny Bairstow for 2, taking half in spherical an inswinger from left-armer Fazalhaq Farooqi. Bairstow stormed off in high dudgeon.
Afghanistan are coached by ragged England batter Jonathan Trott
However with the exception of Brook, there was a deflating lack of intent. Joe Root stayed attend to off-spinner Mujeeb Ur Rahman and was bowled for 11, sooner than Dawid Malan chipped Mohammad Nabi to short further for 32.
When Buttler was bowled by means of a gap the measurement of nearby India Gate by a intellectual inswinger from Naveen-ul-Haq, it was 91 for four. Livingstone was plumb leg-sooner than to Rashid Khan, and wasted a review, sooner than Curran was caught at bound off Nabi.
Woakes performed a melancholy evening when he was bowled by Mujeeb, and England’s final hope evaporated when Brook edged Mujeeb for an otherwise former 66. On a pitch that slowed as the match improved, their spinners performed with eight wickets.
Rapidly, Afghanistan had been celebrating their most well-known night, and a expansive Delhi crowd notorious with them. Entirely 10 days into a tournament England had designs on winning, they occupy barely half of a hand on their trophy.