Joe Root, Eoin Morgan guide England to ODI series win over India in Headingley
To the utter disbelief of their army of supporters who had thronged Headingley in anticipation of a grand finale, India produced a limp show on the most important day of the limited-overs leg of their tour as they were outperformed by England in all departments in the third and final ODI on Tuesday.
Having conceded the psychological edge to England at Lord’s, the visitors lost the plot in the series decider on Tuesday as the rampaging England outplayed Virat Kohli’s men by eight wickets to clinch the ODI series 2-1.
After restricting India to a below par 256/8, Joe Root (100 no) and captain Eoin Morgan (88 no) lead the chase with authority.
It was abject surrender as the Men in Blue put up an abysmal batting show and were equally listless on the field. They failed to make any impact on England with the ball and the game was over as a contest in the first 10 overs of the second half.
India were 32/1 after the first powerplay period; England had raced to 78/2 in 10 overs.
EARLY WORK UNDONE
It undid the psychological advantage India had gained by dominating the early exchanges as England ticked all boxes in preparation for the 2019 World Cup.
The India pace bowlers only needed to keep it tight for the spinners to try and build pressure. But by the time the spinners got into the attack, England had reached 74/1 in nine overs. It left them with simply too much to do. It was pedestrian stuff from India’s new ball bowlers, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Hardik Pandya. There was no movement in the air and nothing off the pitch. They were wayward as well.
It was a complete performance by England. They won the battle with dangerman Kuldeep Yadav as well. To his luck, Root was at the crease when he came to bowl and the England Test captain, who hit 113 at Lord’s continued from where he had left, working around Kuldeep’s bowling. The chinaman bowler’s first spell read 4-0-23-0 before he finished wicketless, going for 55 runs in 10 overs.
England elected to bowl and their bowlers put up a strong showing to pin down India’s powerful batting. After playing on sun-kissed grounds, India faced tough English conditions on Tuesday. Shikhar Dhawan (44 runs), Virat Kohli (71), Dinesh Karthik (21), Mahendra Singh Dhoni (42) and Hardik Pandya (21) all got starts but couldn’t capitalise.
Mark Wood and David Willey bowled well with the new ball, but the men who made the difference were spinners Adil Rashid and Moeen Ali.
Leggie Rashid made the biggest splash. In a dream spell of 10-0-49-3, he put England on top in the decisive game. It was his double strike in the 31st over that knocked the wind out of India’s sails. Rashid produced the ball of the series to knock Kohli’s off-stump, with a delivery which pitched outside leg and turned across to the disbelief of the India captain. Raina fell on the last ball of the over, turning a leg spinner into the hands of the leg-slip fielder.
VIRAT IN A SPIN
For Virat Kohli, it was a rare series where he failed to capitalise despite being set in all three innings. It has been a strange series for India’s premier batsman. He has coped well with the pace test but fallen to the spinners in all three outings, twice to Rashid with Moeen nailing him at Lord’s. To be fair to Kohli, he was done in by an absolute beauty on Tuesday.