'It went Chitta-wrong'
England had two problems against Bangladesh, said Mike Atherton - they batted and bowled badly.
Last Updated: 12/03/11 6:29am
England are "staggering towards the quarter-finals" after losing by two wickets to Bangladesh in Chittagong, according to Michael Atherton.
The co-hosts claimed only their second ODI win over England in 15 games by overhauling the visitors' 225 all out with an over to spare in a thrilling Group B tie.
Ecstatic home celebrations greeted the result and former England skipper Atherton told Sky Sports that it was a great day for Bangladesh cricket.
"I've got to tell you there are amazing scenes here," he said. "The press box erupted - everyone was hugging each other, the security guards were hugging each other.
"All of those thousands who left long before the end when it was 169-8 must be regretting their actions now. It was a sweet feeling, particularly if you are a Bangladesh cricket fan.
"England, of course, have real problems. They've got issues in the team - who to open with, Jimmy Anderson looked shot. He looked as if he'd almost got the yips.
"England bowled 23 wides - that is a hell of a lot of extras to be giving away - and it was a bit of a stuttering batting performance as well.
"Eoin Morgan apart, nobody really grabbed the game by the scruff of the neck. Throughout this tournament England have been sometimes good with the ball, sometimes bad with the bat - and then the other way around!
"Today they seemed to put both parts of the game together and were bad with both. They are clearly feeling the effects of a pretty long winter and a fairly hefty training schedule."
England paid the price for conceding 33 extras - a total that only Eoin Morgan and Jonathan Trott passed with the bat - but despite their indiscipline, Atherton suggested the seamers are likely to get another go in Thursday's crunch game against the West Indies.
"I don't know what they are going to do with Jimmy Anderson," he said. "I suppose in the end, because they are going to Chennai next and that's where he bowled England to victory partially and got the ball reversing so well, they'll stick with him there.
"Ajmal Shahzad showed in patches today that he's got something and Tim Bresnan is pretty reliable so you've got three seamers there. Spin is an issue, isn't it, because you had Bangladesh playing four spinners and England one."
Aside from Shahzad's display, England could take comfort in the form of Morgan who scored an impressive half-century on his return to the side as Kevin Pietersen's replacement.
"He showed the benefits of a fresh, uncluttered mind," said Atherton. "From what I gather, once he recovered from his finger he didn't pick up a bat before he came out here.
"He did look in excellent form. It wasn't that easy a pitch to play on. It was quite low and slow and everybody struggled to time it too frequently. It was a bad blow for England when he got out."
Wicketkeeper Matt Prior was restored to the role of opener in Pietersen's absence and despite a less-than-convincing display at the top of the order, Atherton believes he is likely to get another chance.
"I guess they will have to stick with it now - they can't just keep chopping and changing," he reflected.
"My own preference for the opening slot tonight would have been Ian Bell, just because I think he is a classy player. When he did it in the Caribbean in the last World Cup there were glimpses that he could do it pretty well - he hit sweetly over the top.
"But I think they [the selectors] like him in the middle against the spinners so they've chosen Matt Prior and I don't think they can go to the next game and say 'we messed that up so let's go with somebody else'.
"Bangladesh's seamers actually bowled pretty well with the new ball; they didn't give Prior too much to hit but he is clearly going to have to play aggressively if he gets the opportunity again.
"The problem is that he is a little bit one-dimensional in his hitting zone; if they give him width he will flay it away but I'm not sure if they bowl it straight that he's got that many options."