ROYAL LONDON England v India 3rd ODI 2018 At Headingley
Neil Whitaker Reports
ENGLAND’s highest third wicket partnership of 186 between Joe Root and Eoin Morgan saw England home as they beat India by eight wickets with 5.3 overs to spare to seal the Royal London One Day series 2-1.
Root hit the winning runs when he pulled Hardik Pandya to mid wicket boundary to reach his century while Morgan was unbeaten on 88. The pair came together in the last over of the first power play when England had lost two wickets for 74. India skipper Virat Kohli brought Yuzvendra Chahal into the attack and Root turned his first ball off his legs and set off for a single. Pandya’ return was poor but excellent work by MS Dhoni got the bails of in a flash but James Vince was just short.
Root and Morgan faced nine overs of the left arm leg spinner of Kuleep Yadav and the leg arm spin of Chahal without looking in any danger as they knocked the ball around. They achieved a victory when Yadav was taken out of the attack after four overs top be replaced be Suresh Raina. Morgan lofted Raina over extra cover to bring up the fifty partnership with Root.
Root drilled Yadav through the covers for a boundary to bring up his fifty from 60 balls.
Morgan reached his 39th ODI from 58 balls when he cut when he cut Thakur to the cover boundary for a single. They nearest India came to breaking the partnership was when England were 11 short from victory, Morgan smashed a low full toss rom Pandya straight to Bhuvneshwar Kumar at mid on but he couldn’t hold on to it.
Morgan said: “We started off poorly but as the series progressed we got better that consistency has been brilliant. Today we were clinical. India never got away from us at the start. The challenge for us now is to keep on top of our game. I think that it’s encouraging that Root is getting some runs.”
England’s chase of 257 got off to a blistering start when Vince cut the first ball from Kumar to the cover boundary. Jonny Bairstow then smashed the ball to the boundary as he hit seven off fours in nine balls from Kumar and Pandya. After Kumar’s second over he was replaced by Thakur who was greeted with a legside four from Vince. It was Thakur who got the breakthrough when Bairstow chipped to Raina at mid wicket for a simple catch.
After been put in India’s innings never got into fifth gear and their 256 never looked big enough. It was inevitable that Kohli would hit a fifty but only Shikhar Dhawan and Dhoni got close to reaching fifty.
Kohli looked in imperious from the moment he came in and hit David Willey through deep square backward leg for a four. He then chipped Willey just over Morgan
mid on for another boundary. Kohli should have been stumped on 23 when he dragged his back leg out of his crease to Moeen Ali but Jos Buttler dropped the ball that was the first of his several lives.
When he reached his ninth ODI fifty against England from 54 balls with six fours a ton never looked to be more certain but he fell 29 runs short of that landmark when he was bowled by a classic leg spinner from Adil Rashid which pitched on leg stump and and fizzed into the off stump. That silenced the Indian fans but they still had hope before next man Raina faced a ball when the umpires checked to make sure that Butter had not moved the bails. They were soon to be disappointed again.
Kohli did play a part in the downfall in the fall of India’s second wicket when he clipped Moeen Ali off his legs to Ben Stokes at mid wicket but Dhawan had already set off for a single and was sent back but couldn’t beat Stokes’ throw. Dhawan and Kohli added 69 in 12 overs. It was the 20th time that the pair had added 50 or more together and they are 64th in the all time ODI list.
Four balls after losing Kohli, India lost their fifth wicket when Raina went forward to Rashid and tried to turn him to leg but edged to Root at leg slip who took sprawling catch.
Before Rashid had bamboozled both Kohli and Raina he picked up his first wicket Dinesh Karthick bottom edged a drive and dragged Rashid on.
After getting rid of Kohli and Raina in six balls England thought they had got rid of Dhoni with the first ball of the next over. He lunged forward at Moeen Ali and was given out leg before but Dhoni reviewed it and it showed it to be missing.
Dhoni‘ s innings on Saturday surprised many Indian fans as he never moved moved out of first gear. It surprised more today when he moved up up the order to five. When he swept Moeen Ali through fine leg for his first boundary the Indian fans anticipated him getting a big score but after the dismissals of Kohli and Raina, his job was to bat through the innings and get India as close to 300 as he can.
Pandya gently pushed Rashid for a four to the long off boundary that just beat Plunkett as he and Dhoni added 36 in seven overs until Pandya. With Pandya they added 36 in seven overs until Pandya was squared up by Mark Wood and give Buttler his first catch of the innings.
Now was the time for Dhoni to blaze India to 300 but again he got stuck but didn’t get rid of him till the 46th over when he was out in a similar style to Pandya only this time the bowler was Wood.
It wasn’t until the 47th over that India hit the first six of their innings and Thakur then doubled his team’s tally ans he and Kumar got India past 250 with Kumar falling on the last ball of the innings to a Bairstow catch in the deep of Willey.
The defeat for India was their first back to back defeat since 2016.
Posted on 06/04/2018
by Michael Blumberg