0 Headingley hopes go down the drain

England's one-day international with West Indies at Headingley Carnegie was washed out yesterday because drainage work was not completed in time.

A £600,000 drainage system and newly laid outfield were installed recently at Headingley, which was bathed in sunshine for most of the afternoon, but officials admitted that they had not finished all the work required before the first match of the NatWest Series yesterday.

The crowd of 11,000 reacted with admirable patience, but when the game was finally abandoned at 3.10pm, a chorus of boos rang out. Water was still squelching over the shoes of Andrew Strauss, the England captain, and his team-mates as they walked on the outfield, the result of heavy rain overnight and in the morning, which had conspicuously failed to drain away.

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