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England in need of swift turnaround Published: 19 November 2012

Alastair Cook and England have plenty on their plate ahead of the second Test on Friday, after a nine-wicket drubbing at the hands of India in Ahmedabad.

The result showed we might have got it wrong

England's slim hopes of rescuing the first Test on the final day all but died in the first hour, where their two standout performers with the bat, Cook and Matt Prior, were both dismissed by Pragyan Ojha.

It would have been a serious let-off for England had they not succumbed to Cook's first defeat as skipper in his first match in charge on a full-time basis. Their batting was - with the two aforementioned exceptions - depressingly fallible against the Indian slow bowlers, with the middle order managing just 68 runs in eight innings between them.

The bowling, with the exception of Graeme Swann, was also a cause for concern, James Anderson, Tim Bresnan, Samit Patel and the wicketless Stuart Broad picking up combined figures of 2/375 in the match.
Selection

England are in the rare position of having entered the series in the knowledge that Ian Bell would miss the second Test to attend the birth of his first child back in the UK.

As it turns out, Bell would have been under pressure anyway after his continued travails on the sub-continent and Jonny Bairstow will more than likely replace the Warwickshire man in the middle-order.

There have also been some mutterings that Patel could be replaced at six by Eoin Morgan, and Cook hinted at more changes to the starting line-up in Mumbai.

"Clearly we're going to have to look at our selection," said the 27-year-old, who became the first batsman to make a century in his first three appearances as Test skipper.

"There are some good people making decisions in this England team and we thought we were doing the right thing for the side. The result showed we might have got it wrong.

"When you get beaten by nine wickets, you have a look at a lot of areas and we have to look at what we could have done better. There will be a lot to ponder."

Left-arm-spinner Monty Panesar seems almost certain to replace Bresnan - who looked down on pace and confidence - in order to offer Cook greater control, while there have also been questions asked about Broad's position in the team.

Broad is England's vice-captain on the trip but averages more than 40 with the ball overseas and has a batting average languishing below 15. He is likely to get a reprieve though with the news that Steven Finn remains unavailable following his thigh injury.


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