ICC WT20: Brilliant Netherlands Beat Sorry England
Netherlands 163-6 (de Grooth 49, Anderson 3-23) beat
England 162-5 (Wright 71, Bopara 46) by four wickets
ICC World Twenty Group B, Lord's
The Netherlands pulled off the most significant cricketing result in their history by clinching a four-wicket win over ICC World Twenty20 hosts England at Lord's.
Tom de Grooth played a stunning innings of 49 in 30 balls and the experience of Ryan ten Doeschate (22 not out) helped them overcome England's total of 162 for five thanks to an overthrow with the scores tied after the final ball.
England failed to clear the boundary once during their innings, and also failed to build on another aggressive century stand from Ravi Bopara (46) and Luke Wright (71) with Robert Key, in the side in place of an injured Kevin Pietersen, inexplicably coming in at number six.
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Even when Key was eventually sent in to bat, he managed to score at more than a run a ball, closing unbeaten on ten alongside James Foster (3).
Ten Doeschate came back from an early mauling by Wright and Bopara to return two for 35 before playing the finishing role to aplomb for the men in orange.
The Netherlands' run chase was first ignited by Darron Reekers, who crashed two sixes and a four before de Grooth's silky strokeplay put England on the back foot.
Reekers made 20 in 13 balls and was quite content to play his shots despite the early dismissal of Alexei Kervezee for one.
De Grooth, though, was in sublime touch as he announced himself to the match with a sweetly-timed boundary through the off side and then pulled and drove England to distraction before he was deceived by a Collingwood slower ball and lobbed a simple catch to Key at short cover.
Peter Borren smacked a quickfire 30 but it still went down to the wire as England, led by James Anderson who took three for 23, overcame some poor fielding, incuding dropped catches by Eoin Morgan and Stuart Broad, to force the Netherlands to get two from the final ball to win.
Edgar Schiferli (5 not out) got bat on ball, Broad fielded in his follow through, threw at the stumps rather than settle for a one over eliminator, but his miss allowed the Dutch to cross for the winning second run.
The result leaves England in need of a big win against Pakistan if they are now to progress.
© Cricket World 2009