10:00pm Thursday 8th July 2010
INNINGS of contrasting style from Andrew Strauss and Ian Bell saw England to a comfortable six-wicket win in the first one-day international against Bangladesh at Trent Bridge.
Strauss teed off to the tune of 50 in 37 balls at the top of the order while Bell top-scored with an expertly measured 84 not out to see England past a moderate target of 251 with 29 balls to spare.
Both men have had their suitability for 50-over cricket questioned in recent times but, in a match which was the first international to be broadcast in 3D, the pair proved they have more than one dimension.
Bell, making his first ODI appearance since November 2008 in place of the injured Kevin Pietersen, has particular cause for satisfaction after ensuring England maintained their 100% record over the Tigers in all forms of the game.
Strauss got off the mark with a trademark cut for four of the final ball of the opening over but was soon collecting runs in less familiar areas.
He took 15 off a single Shafiul Islam over, a lofted drive over extra-cover the pick of three boundaries, as England posted 50 off just seven overs.
Craig Kieswetter also found the ropes early in his innings but, with 44 of England's 66 after 10 overs, Strauss was setting the pace.
Kieswetter's emergence had led some to question whether Strauss' methods at the top of the order were out-dated but, having already answered his critics in the series win over Australia, he was now toying with them.
A dashed single saw him to a 22nd ODI 50 but when the pair attempted another, Strauss failed to make his ground.
Kieswetter hit one six in his 32 but fell to Shakib Al Hasan attempting a second.
Bell was in at three, with Paul Collingwood joining him after Kieswetter perished.
Shakib almost found Bell's edge with a vicious turner but otherwise the pair's progress was steady but unspectacular, with just one four in their first 50 together.
Bangladesh's chances receded further when a Faisal Hossain ball reared nastily and hit wicketkeeper Mushfiqur Rahim in the face.
He was stretchered off the pitch and into an ambulance, leaving Junaid Siddique to take the gloves.
The emphasis remained firmly on singles but loose deliveries began to creep in, with Collingwood finally able to hit a first boundary off his 41st ball.
His innings ended on 33 when he top-edged one to the makeshift keeper, but Bell pushed on to a 16th half-century in 68 balls.
Eoin Morgan brought up the 200 with a nonchalant six over wide mid-on but holed out for 23, leaving Michael Yardy to join Bell at the close.
The Bangladesh innings had earlier got off to a typically breakneck start.
Tamim Iqbal, as ever, was the orchestrator, striking James Anderson's first two balls to the boundary and following up with more of the same off Tim Bresnan.
Eight deliveries into the innings the maverick opener had 19 but his onslaught could not last and Stuart Broad - summoned to stem the flow after only four overs - pinned him lbw for 28.
The run-rate duly fell in his absence and the 10-over total of 47 was just 10 more than it had been after five overs.
Anderson returned to the attack to account for Imrul Kayes (14), but despite adding two more wickets later on, he had a generally unhappy day with his 10 overs costing 74.
Junaid went about his business in unfussy fashion, nudging his way to 51 before Yardy won another lbw decision.
Raqibul continued accumulating without taking undue risks, but after he reached his seventh ODI 50 the situation seemed to require more.
Mushfiqur (22) did up the tempo with a pair of perfectly-timed sixes off one Anderson over but Raqibul was unable to find another gear.
He eventually departed in messy circumstances - run out for a 95-ball 76 with Shakib acting as his runner.
That was one of four wickets to fall for just 24 runs in the final five overs of the innings, in what was notionally the batting powerplay.
Broad, on duty just 24 hours after the death of his stepmother, was the pick of England's bowlers with two for 43.
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