England take series after wash-out

England won their one-day international series against South Africa when the fifth and final match was rained out at Kingsmead on Friday.

updated: December 04, 2009 17:28 IST
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England has won its one-day international series against South Africa 2-1 after rain forced Friday's fifth and final match to be abandoned without a ball being bowled.

The start was delayed with the outfield waterlogged by downpours during the days leading up to the match and eventually abandoned following an umpires' inspection at 5 p.m. local time (1500 GMT).

The first match in the series in Johannesburg was also washed out.

England won by seven wickets in Pretoria and Port Elizabeth, while South Africa picked up a 112-run victory in Cape Town.

The abandonment means England wins a one-day series in South Africa for the first time in four visits since the host's isolation from the international game ended in the 1990s.

England next plays a couple of two-day warm-up matches against an SA Invitation XI in East London on Dec. 9-10 and Dec. 11-12, before a four-match Test series gets underway in Pretoria on Dec. 16.

Looking ahead, England captain Andrew Strauss said: "We take some confidence from the ODI series into the Tests... but I don't think (the victory) means a huge amount. Any success does help breed further success, though."

Player of the series Paul Collingwood, who scored 193 runs in three innings for England, including 105 not out at Centurion, said the most important thing for players was to adapt quickly to today's more "powerful" brand of cricket.

"There are many more sixes being hit these days. You have to adjust your technique and attitude to the way the game is being played," Collingwood said.

South African captain Graeme Smith was clearly looking forward to the next contests with England at Test level.

"In the last couple of years, we have been very good in Tests," he said. "England have an Ashes-winning Test squad; which bodes well."