Yuvraj blitz lifts India to record total against England

Published: Friday, November 14, 2008, 13:32 [IST]
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Yuvraj Singh smashed an unbeaten 138 off just 78 balls as India posted their highest one-day total against England of 387-5 in the first game of their seven-match series here on Friday.

The left-hander, who batted with a runner due to a back injury in the early part of his innings, hammered 16 boundaries and six sixes after England elected to field at the Madhavrao Scindia stadium.

Yuvraj put on 89 for the third wicket with Suresh Raina (43) and 105 for the fifth with skipper Mahendra Dhoni (39) as India surpassed their previous best total against England of 329-7 at Bristol last year.

It was India's highest total against a major cricketing nation -- they made 376-2 against New Zealand in 1999 -- although their best ever is 413-5 against Bermuda at the 2007 World Cup.

India plundered 124 runs in the final 10 overs to leave England a massive victory target of 7.8 runs an over.

Virender Sehwag and Gautam Gambhir set up England's chase with a whirlwind opening stand of 120 by the 20th over.

Sehwag struck a typically belligerent 85 off 73 balls with 10 boundaries and three sixes.

The left-handed Gambhir, who top-scored in the recent Test series against Australia with 463 runs in three matches, continued his good form to make 51 with the help of eight fours.

The match was the first for both teams under new one-day rules that give the batting team the option of choosing five overs of power-play where just three fielders are allowed outside the circle.

India took theirs between the 35th and 39th overs and scored 41 runs for the loss of Raina's wicket.

Earlier, only the fielding team could pick the power-plays that give batsmen a chance to play lofted shots in the open spaces outside the circle.

Steve Harmison and Samit Patel picked up two wickets each, while paceman Stuart Broad conceded 74 runs in 10 unsuccessful overs.

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