22 November, 2008


A day after bad light forced an early end to the Kanpur ODI and handed India their third victory of the series, England captain Kevin Pietersen has raised concerns about the possibility of a similar problem in Guwahati, the venue for the sixth one-dayer on November 29.

"They [the authorities] will have to do something about Guwahati," Pietersen said. "We are going to start there at 8.30 am but that will still not make too much of a difference. It could get dark there by 3.30pm."

Guwahati is located in the north east and the sun sets earlier in the region than elsewhere in India. In Kanpur, the start of the third ODI was delayed by 45 minutes due to hazy conditions but only one over per innings was reduced. The light deteriorated rapidly during India's run-chase and the umpires offered it to the batsmen at the end of the 40th over. At that stage India needed 43 runs off 54 balls with five wickets in hand but were 16 runs ahead of the D/L equation.

"I think if we had a full game in Kanpur, we would have definitely taken it close," Pietersen said. "We put a lot of pressure on them and there was plenty of aggression from the bowlers."

However, Pietersen called on his batsmen to convert the starts they were getting into hundreds in order to stay competitive in the series. Pietersen's 63 in the first ODI in Rajkot is England's best individual performance in three matches. Bopara and Shah have also scored three half-centuries between them but they haven't been able to carry on.

"We have played in India for years now and there have only been a few centuries by England batsmen out here," Pietersen said. "We knew, coming to India, we needed to score hundreds to stay competitive and we have not got a hundred yet. Hopefully in the next four games we can try and get four."

England cannot afford another defeat in the seven-match series which India lead 3-0. The fourth ODI is in Bangalore on November 23 and it will be the series' first day-night contest.

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