RAVI Bopara and his England team-mates suffered a humiliating defeat to Holland in their final World Twenty20 match today.
England captain Stuart Broad admitted there were “no excuses” from his side after they were bowled out for just 88 runs by the tournament minnows and said they had let down their supporters.
None of the England players could be excused of blame, but Essex’s Bopara was arguably his country’s best player.
It was his spell of tight bowling (four overs for 15 runs and one wicket) that slowed down the Dutch and prevented them from posting a far greater total than the 133-5 they did.
That total left England as firm favourites as they started the run chase, but some dreadful performances with the bat saw them never get close.
Bopara came in with England staring at defeat at 45-5 and could only add 18 runs to the total – though he did prove to be his country’s top scorer on a miserable day.
Skipper Broad said: “It’s hugely disappointing but there’s no excuses from our side. We should have won today, it was relatively simple chase, but a shocking chase.
“It sums up our winter really as an England cricket side. It was pretty simillar to the sort of batting displays we put in after we’d lost the Ashes in Australia, bit of a lack of commitment in the shots and that was a very disorganised chase.
“The players have certainly let the small amount of fans who have travelled here down, but also English cricket fans at home.
“If I hadn’t been a part of the game and was just watching that, I’d be looking at the batting performance and say it was complacent.
“No-one got going, no-one took responsibility and fair play to the Netherlands, they took their chance."
Despite the loss, Broad was keen to take a positive attitude when looking to the future as England attempt to rebuild after what he termed a “horrendous” winter.
He said: “In the past year we’ve had some problems chasing down scores, it’s not just T20 cricket. It’s a problem that we’ll have to eradicate from our game.
“But we’ve got a bit of time now to sit back and find the way forward. Obviously a bit of new era for English cricket coming, and that’s exciting as well.”