India scored their third consecutive 300+ score with half-centuries from Shikhar Dhawan, Rishabh Pant & Hardik Pandya.
India were put into bat as Virat Kohli lost the toss once again. Mark Wood came in place of Tom Curran while India also added a fast bowler in T Natarajan. Kuldeep Yadav was dropped after a string of poor performances.
India looked to score at a much quicker rate from the start. English team chased down 336 runs in just 43 overs in the last match. Both Dhawan and Rohit were intent on picking boundaries every over. The pair reached the century partnership in 14th over with Dhawan completing his half century. This was when things England’s spinners turned things around.
First up, Rohit Sharma got bowled by a googly from Adil Rashid at a run-a-ball 37. Dhawan was next to fall to another googly as he gave back an easy catch to Rashid. Virat Kohli went back to turning ball from Moeen Ali to get bowled at just 7.
The difference in approach was still evident from India though. While KL Rahul was content in taking singles, Rishabh Pant attacked Rashid and kept collecting boundaries. Moeen Ali took a good catch at deep square leg to dismiss Rahul off a full toss from Liam Livingstone. This was Livingstone’s first international wicket.
Hardik Pandya joined Pant and these two men once again took the attack to English bowlers. Especially spinners. Moeen Ali, who was looking fine till then, was hit for 3 sixes in an over and never returned to bowl in the inning. Both men completed half centuries and stitched a 99 run partnership.
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Pant then fell to an edge while attempting another one of his audacious shots off Sam Curran. Pandya also soon followed suit as Ben Stokes clipped his leg stump when Pandya backed off too much to offside. India was 6 down in 39 overs at 276. The bigger disappointment for both Pant and Pandya would be to miss out on a chance to hit a big century.
From there on, Krunal Pandya tried to do as deep as possible while Shardul Thakur hit some important boundaries. They collected 47 runs in 42 balls to take India to 321. As Shardul and Krunal got out in the space of 9 balls, whatever runs came for India were a bonus. The last four wickets for India fell for just 8 runs to take India to 329.
The second innings will be interesting to see as England chased down a similar total in just 43 overs in the last match. However, they were bowled out on the same ground in 42nd over in the first ODI.