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England beaten by Pakistan in World Cup opener

31st January 2017

** Report by the England & Wales Cricket Board

England opened their T20 Blind World Cup account with a 98-run loss as they failed to chase down 296 against Pakistan in Delhi.

Captain Luke Sugg opted to bowl first after winning the toss and England got the early breakthrough in the fifth over when Ed Hossell dismissed Badar Munir for 20 to leave Pakistan 48 for one.

The England bowling attack failed to capitalise on the early momentum, however, with Pakistan's Muhammad Akram and Riasat Khan putting on 141 for the second wicket.

Matthew Dean eventually broke up the partnership in the 14th when he caught and bowled Akram, who departed for 103.

Khan went on to make 82 before being run out by Sugg and Pakistan finished on 296 for four from their 20 overs.

England struggled to build momentum in their chase, losing three wickets Dan Field, Nathan Foy and Matthew Dean in the first eight overs.

After also losing Justin Hollingsworth, Matthew Page and Sugg, they failed to keep up with the required rate and closed out the innings on 198 for six.

Peter Blueitt, who made his international debut during a home Ashes series in 2012, was the pick of England's batsmen accounting for more than a third of his side's total with an unbeaten 70.

Blueitt is one of England's B1 (completely blind) players.

Sugg and his team-mates will look to bounce back quickly when they face New Zealand in their second group match on 1st February.

England XI: Dan Field, Nathan Foy, Matt Dean, Luke Sugg (Captain), Peter Blueitt, Matt Page, Justin Hollingsworth, Rory Hossell, Amin Afshari, Ed Hossell, Mark Turnham.

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Additional Notes

* Rory Hossell made his debut for England and becomes cap number 64.

* Peter Blueitt’s score was his first international half century.

* England’s remaining fixtures can be found at the link below.

LINK: International fixtures

* The tournament Results so far and group stage table can be found at the link below.

LINK: International results