Half-centuries from Joe Root, Jason Roy and Ben Stokes helped England post their highest score in India -- 350 for seven -- and Virat Kohli & Co will have to come out with all guns blazing in the first ODI at the MCA Stadium in Pune on Sunday. (1st ODI LIVE UPDATES)
Hardik Pandya was the most successful Indian bowler with 2/46, and Ravindra Jadeja (1/50 in 10 overs) was the most economical among the seven bowlers used by skipper Virat Kohli. Ravichandran Ashwin was had a rare off day as he leaked 63 runs in his eight overs. (1st ODI LIVE SCORECARD)
While Jason Roy was on the attack from the beginning during his 61-ball 73-run knock, Joe Root took 95 balls for his 78 which helped India control England’s momentum in the middle overs. But Stokes (62), who brought up his 50 in 33 balls — the fastest half-century by an England batsman in India, kept the visitors on course for a 300-plus score.
India managed a breakthrough in the seventh over, thanks to Jasprit Bumrah’s direct hit from the deep fine leg at the non-striker’s end as Alex Hales’ bat was on the line while going for the second run.
Roy, however, made his intentions clear from the first over itself when he used the pace of the ball off Yadav to the third man for a boundary.
The lovely straight drive punch off Bumrah in the 10th over was a treat to watch. He brought up his half-century in just 36 balls with an attractive pull shot off Bumrah.
Kohli wasted no time in introducing spin as early as the 10th over. After Jadeja conceded 10 runs off his two overs, Kohli tossed the ball to Ashwin hoping for a breakthrough.
While the fast bowlers leaked runs freely (77/1 in 12 overs), the spinners were successful in applying the brakes on England’s scoring spree. For 30 balls, Roy and Root were not able to score a boundary, which brought down their scoring rate to just below six for the first time in the match.
Ashwin could have got rid of Roy in his third over when the English player tried to reverse sweep a length ball. But Yadav, stationed at short third man, could not reach to catch.
Finally, Jadeja took the wicket as an adventurous Roy came down the wicket, but missed the ball only to provide an easy stumping opportunity for MS Dhoni.
Ashwin may have kept England initially quiet, giving away just 20 runs in his four overs, but Morgan and Root went on the offensive against India’s premier off-spinner as he leaked 21 runs in his next two overs.
Umpire CK Nandan faced a torrid time with the DRS. After an LBW decision on Roy being overturned, the Indian umpire was again forced to overturn his decision — this time it was in India’s favour. Nandan failed to hear the faint edge from Morgan’s willow, but a confident Dhoni did not even wait to consult skipper Kohli and asked for a review.
While India managed just two wickets between overs 20 and 40, the bowlers ensured they kept England’s batsmen quiet, conceding just 124 runs. But Stokes’ power-packed batting shifted the balance in England’s favour towards the end. Stokes and Mooen Ali added 73 runs in 33 balls.