England defeat nothing to do with Bell omission - Broad

England's Kevin Pietersen scores past Sri Lanka wicketkeeper Danesh Chandimal (left) during the International Twenty20 match at The County Ground, Gloucestershire. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo.
England's Kevin Pietersen scores past Sri Lanka wicketkeeper Danesh Chandimal (left) during the International Twenty20 match at The County Ground, Gloucestershire. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo.
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Stuart Broad has defended the decision to omit the in-form Ian Bell for yesterday’s nine-wicket defeat to Sri Lanka.

Stuart Broad has defended the decision to omit the in-form Ian Bell for yesterday’s nine-wicket defeat to Sri Lanka.

Broad, making his bow as England’s new Twenty20 captain in Bristol, would have hoped to be answering questions about his first victory in the job but was instead left to explain away a crushing defeat.

Let down by all of his batsmen bar Kevin Pietersen and Eoin Morgan, who shared a rapid 83-run stand, and left to celebrate a solitary wicket in the field, this was not the start Broad, or England, had in mind.

The decision to leave out Bell, who plundered two hundreds and two fifties in the Test series against the tourists, in favour of a bevy of all-rounders seemed a strange one but Broad does not believe the game was won and lost on that gamble.

“I certainly don’t think the team’s disappointing performance is down to one man not being in the team,” said Broad.

“I think, looking at the top of the order, Craig Kieswetter and Michael Lumb have shown fantastic tempo in the county game and did very well in the World Twenty20.