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|England 'A' arrives to play Duleep Trophy|
Wednesday, February 4 2004 18:35 Hrs (IST)
The 15-member squad touched down from Malaysia last night and had nets on Wednesday afternoon under the watchful eyes of coach Rodney Marsh who said it's going to be a "tour of experience" for his wards.
"Too many did not play (International cricket)", Marsh told reporters. He said he expected some of the players to perform exceptionally well on the tour so that it putspressure on those doing national duties to strive harder to retain their place in the top side.
Marsh said the current England national side faced no pressure and it showed on their performance. They should have fear that if they don't perform well, they will be replaced. "That's how it's in Australia and now in India, and that's how it should be", he said.
Marsh said the England 'A' has some talent and it's an opportunity for them to realise their potential. Asked about Simon Jones, Marsh said the speedster is worried about the rhythm after having not bowled in the last 15 months.
Marsh said England 'A' is "staggered, amazed and thrilled" to play in the Duleep Trophy matches to be held in the North Zone from February 14. "Very delighted with the opportunity. We will endeavour to do well. If we are not good enough, we will certainly be competitive", he said.
On the current England national side, he said, "They should win in the West Indies. Otherwise, things are going to change".
The visitors are slated to play three Limited Overs game against Sairaj Bahutule-led India 'A', at Bangalore on February 9 and 10 and at Chennai on February 12. They will also play a warm-up game on February 6. Sandeep Patil is coach of the India 'A' team.
England 'A': Alex Gidman (Captain), Kadeer Ali, Simon Francis, Simon Jones, Shaftab Khalid, Michael Lumb, Sajid Mahmood, Graham Napier, Scott Newman, Kevin Pietersen, Matthew Prior, Bilal Shafayat, Ed Smith, James Tredwell and Graham Wagg.
India 'A': Sairaj Bahutule (Captain), Gautam Gambhir, Dinesh Mongia, Sridharan Sriram, Mithun Manhas, Tejinderpal Singh, Y Venugopala Rao, Ajay Rathra, Ramesh Powar, Munaf Patel, Siddarth Trivedi, Shib Shankar Paul, Jai Prakash Yadav and Sreekumar Nair.