Ian Bell century lifts England to huge total against Delhi

Ian Bell put on a 113-run stand with Eoin Morgan for the fourth wicket in the warm-up match against Delhi © Getty Images

New Dehli: Jan 8, 2013

Ian Bell scored a fine century as England posted a challenging 294 for five against Delhi in the second and final warm-up match at the Feroz Shah Kotla ground in New Delhi on Tuesday.

Having scored 91 in the first match against India A, Bell continued his fine form as he batted with lot of responsibility, hitting 125-ball 108 with the help of 10 fours and two huge sixes.

The main feature of the England innings was 113-run partnership for the fourth wicket between Bell and Eoin Morgan, who smashed 52 off 55 balls laced with five boundaries and two sixes.

Craig Kieswetter also thrashed the Delhi bowlers to finish with an unbeaten 41 off 27 balls which included three sixes.

Morgan-Bell duo got their runs in only 93 balls as the Delhi attack led by India discard Ashish Nehra looked pedestrian.

While Parvinder Awana bowled a good first spell, it was certainly not enough as England got off to a ideal start with skipper Alastair Cook (44) and Bell adding 70 runs for the opening wicket.

Cook, who opted out of the first practice match, decided to rest Kevin Pietersen on Tuesday. The left-hander hit some lovely strokes during his 57-ball stay. The best of his seven boundaries was a cover drive off Awana. When Cook was batting, Bell decided to play the role of second fiddle as he let his captain take bulk of the strike.

It was seamer Sumit Narwal, who gave Delhi their first breakthrough as he bowled Cook.

Young Joe Root tried to play a sweep shot off left-arm spinner Varun Sood and the resultant skier was taken by Punit Bisht. Samit Patel (13) was bowled by an arm ball from Sood that kept very low.

Once Morgan joined Bell, the duo started taking on the Delhi bowlers. Bell hit Rajat Bhatia for a huge six into the middle tier of the deep mid-wicket stands. Bell’s second six was straight into the sightscreen. Morgan also made merry as he hit Nehra for a straight six and then pulled him for a boundary.

For the hosts, young Delhi U-25 spinner Sood was the best bowler with figures of three for 45 from 10 overs. Nehra went for 48 in nine wicketless overs and Awana also got a bit of stick during his second and third spells as he ended up giving away 53 runs in eight overs without a wicket. Worst was Sumit Narwal who gave away 66 from 10 overs including two huge sixes in the final over.

Brief Scores: England Xl 294 for 5 in 50 overs (Ian Bell 108, Eoin Morgan 52, Alastair Cook 44; Varun Sood 3 for 45) vs Delhi

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