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Cricket: England cruise to warm up win

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posted on Jun, 20 2004 @ 10:43 AM
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England warmed up for the Natwest Series with a comfortable six wicket win over Wales at Sophia Gardens.

The fixture between the two neighbouring countries is now an annual event and England used the opportunity to have a look at several of the new faces in their one-day squad.

Wales - containing just two players not from Glamorgan - batted first and made 222-8 in their allotted 50 overs.

David Hemp top scored for the hosts with 52 while Michael Powell, who was in consideration for a one-day spot with England, also chipped in with 49.

Stand-in captain Marcus Trescothick used six different bowlers and all registered in the wickets column with Lancashire duo Sajid Mahmood and James Anderson picking up two apiece.

England's reply didn't get off to the best of starts when Trescothick departed for a single. Geraint Jones came in at No.3 and smashed five fours in a quick fire 21 before he was dismissed by David Harrison and the visitors were 30-2.

The away side needed to establish a partnership and Andrew Strauss and Robert Key laid the platform for England to cruise home.

Kent opener Key, recalled to the international set-up after a year-long absence, blossomed after a slow start and made 83 before Simon Jones forced him to edge behind to the wicketkeeper.

Strauss refused to be moved though and ended unbeaten on 92 from just 86 balls with 13 fours and one maximum in his innings.

England sailed to their target with more than ten overs to spare and the victory will boost morale ahead of the triangular tournament which pits them against New Zealand and the West Indies.

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