England failed to capitalize on the devastating starting position of Jonny Bairstow and Jason Roy as India clinched a 66-run victory in the first of three one-day internationals in Pune.
Set 318 to win, England’s starters flew out of the traps, putting up an extraordinary 135 in 14.2 overs, but Roy’s firing opened the floodgates and despite Bairstow’s belligerent 94 66-balls, the tourists calmed down.
Prasidh Krishna had been overwhelmed early in debut, but bounced back to finish four of 54 when England packed for 251 in 42.1 overs after a late surge from KL Rahul and Krunal Pandya that helped India to 317 of five.
Eoin Morgan required four stitches on his hand, while Sam Billings sprained his clavicle joint after an awkward fall and, although they were able to hit, the pair were out of bounds in the final stages of India’s innings.
The absence of Morgan’s reassuring influence was a particular hit as Rahul and Krunal, taking their ODI curtsy, brutalized England bowlers in an unbroken 112-run position, helping India rebound after losing four of 36. in one stage.
Shikhar Dhawan (98) and Virat Kohli (56) finally laid the groundwork for Rahul (62 without 43 balls) and Krunal (58 without 31), who hugged their brother Hardik at the end of their coup, the pair had lost their father to mid-January.
Rahul and Krunal’s fireworks contrasted with the vigilant approach employed by Rohit Sharma and Dhawan after India was invited to bat first when Mark Wood and Sam Curran, replacing the rested Chris Woakes and the injured Jofra Archer, capitalized on a clue. of movement to keep dangerous early hitters quiet.
A rising Wood delivery hit Rohit’s back elbow, requiring treatment, and the problem continued to preoccupy the starter, who chased after Ben Stokes out for 28. But Kohli upped the ante upon arrival, combining luxurious drives with fast singles. in a typically fluid half century.
Dhawan followed his captain’s lead, throwing Adil Rashid over the middle to reach his fifties before sending Moeen Ali over the ropes, compounding the opportunity in the depths of his return to England when the opener India was at 59.
Moeen atoned for his fall, holding on after Kohli hit Wood halfway down the field, ending a 105-run partnership that was the start of India’s shake-up from 169-for-one to 205-for-five. Dhawan fell in the middle of the wobble, two runs under his tonne after throwing to Stokes’ midwicket, who had his third wicket when Hardik Pandya slipped.
While one Pandya remained subdued, the other prospered when England freed their opponents. With Morgan – and Billings – looking helpless at this stage, Rahul and Krunal added 112 of the last 57 balls.
It was a boundary-laden association, with Rahul lethal on the arc between long and midwicket to skin four sixes and four, while Krunal scored around the wicket to raise his fifty in just 26 balls, the fastest by a rookie in ODIs. But, if that was impressive, then Bairstow and Roy went up another gear at the start of England’s response.
Bhuvneshwar Kumar was typically inexpensive, but Roy was on his way with four in a row against rookie India Krishna, who conceded 22 in an over when Bairstow sped up, having served six of his first 18 balls.
Kohli shuffled his pack, turning to Krunal and Kuldeep Yadav early on, but the spinners were unable to stop Bairstow’s attack, conceding two sixes apiece as the Yorkshireman crossed the line with impunity to take the lead in an incredible 135-run stoppage. in less than 15 overs.
There would have been a sigh of relief at home camp when Roy failed to score 46, while Stokes’ rise in the order in Joe Root’s absence backfired as he jumped into additional coverage to give Krishna two wickets in two overs.
Morgan took a casualty of his first ball after Kohli dived and couldn’t hold onto a chance to slip, but the wickets continued to fall as Bairstow holed in the middle of Shardul Thakur to fall short of his hundred.
Thakur (three out of 37) swung the pendulum further in the Indian road when Morgan (22) got a slim lead for a gorilla, while Jos Buttler got caught in the fold of two, continuing a scoring streak of one. single figure in ODIs since the 2019 World Cup. Mug.
England had staggered from 135 without losing to 176 for five and ultimately it was a position from which they could not rebound when India drew first blood of the series.
George is Digismak’s reported cum editor with 13 years of experience in Journalism