Ranchi, Jan 19: Virat Kohli and bowlers set up India's comfortable seven-wicket victory over England in the third One Day International at the JSCA International Stadium here on Saturday evening. First, the bowlers restricted the visitors to a below par 155 and then Virat Kohli took charge of the small chase as he guided the team home with his 22nd half century. India lead 2-1 in the five-match series.
It was a fitting way to finish the game with homeboy and India captain MS Dhoni hitting the winning runs, a boundary in front of nearly 40,000 fans at the stadium. India completed the chase of 156 in 28.1 overs. Dhoni made 10 not out in the first ever ODI in Ranchi. India's winning margin of 131 balls to spare is biggest over England. Previous was 123 balls in Jaipur on October 15, 2006.
Man-of-the-match Kohli, when on 49, completed 4,000 ODI runs. He is the fastest Indian to reach the milestone. Overall, the Delhi batsman is second quickest in the world after Vivian Richards. Kohli took 93 innings while Richards reached there in 88.
It was a foregone conclusion that India would canter home once England were rolled over for 155. But, Steven Finn gave a glimmer of hope of defending the small score by removing Ajinkya Rahane for a duck in the third over. But all hopes of England comeback were extinguished by Kohli, who batted superbly. The right-hander remained unbeaten on 77 off 79 balls with 9 boundaries and 2 sixes.
Yuvraj Singh made a quick 21-ball 30 while Gautam Gambhir scored 33.
The fourth ODI is in Mohali on January 23. Final game is in Dharamsala on January 27.
England bowled out for 155
England batting crumbled in MS Dhoni's hometown. It was a perfect beginning for India in Ranchi's new stadium on Saturday in the third One Day International. India's disciplined bowling effort kept the visitors to a below par 155 all out in 42.2 overs. This was for the second time in a row that England batting disappointed. In the previous game in Kochi, they were rolled over for 158.
All six Indian bowlers tasted success. Left-arm spinner Ravindra Jadeja was the pick of them with figures of 3/19 in 6.2 overs. Ishant Sharma and R Ashwin had two apiece while Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Shami Ahmed and Suresh Raina had one victim each.
There was nothing wrong with the pitch and it was purely the good bowling of India and combined with poor shot selection that ended England's innings at 155.
It was a cautious start by England openers on the new pitch. Not knowing what to expect, both captain Alastair Cook and Ian Bell made a slow start.
Cook (17) was the first man to depart, trapped LBW by Shami in the eighth over. It was a decent start of 24/1 in 8 overs. After this early loss, Bell and Kevin Pietersen settled England. They added 44 runs for the second wicket.
The start of England's slide began with the unlucky dismissal of Pietersen (17) in the 15th over. Umpire S Ravi erred by adjudging the Englishman caught behind off Ishant when replays showed that it was sound of bat hitting the pad. Pietersen was shocked to be given out and took some time to leave the crease. Till then, Pietersen was looking in good touch, hitting Ishant for two successive boundaries in his first over.
Soon, Bell (25), attempting for a cut shot, was cut behind by Dhoni off Bhuvneshwar Kumar.
England's score of 68/2 became 68/3 and soon they were reeling at 98/6 in 25 overs.
Eoin Morgan was guilty of playing an irresponsible reverse-sweep shot and caught at backward point off Ashwin. Jadeja took two wickets in one over, removing Craig Kieswetter and Samit Patel (both out for ducks).
Joe Root (39), England's best batsman in the innings, was involved with Tim Bresnan (25) in rescuing the team from further slump. Root and Bresnan put on 47 runs in 11.4 overs. But again, England lost two quick wickets with first Root and then Bresnan being dismissed in the batting powerplay.
Steven Finn and Jade Dernbach were the final two batsmen out as England ended a dismal batting show at 155 in 42.2 overs.
India win toss, opt to field
India captain MS Dhoni won the toss and sent England to bat in the third One Day International here on Saturday.
India retained the same winning combination from Kochi while England made one change. Tim Bresnan replaced Chris Woakes. So, the wait for Cheteshwar Pujara continues for his ODI debut.
This is the first ever ODI being staged at the brand new JSCA International Stadium. It was inaugurated on Friday night.
The five-match series is currently tied at 1-1.
India: MS Dhoni (captain and wicketkeeper), Gautam Gambhir, Ajinkya Rahane, Virat Kohli, Yuvraj Singh, Suresh Raina, R Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Ishant Sharma, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Shami Ahmed.
England: Alastair Cook (captain), Joe Root, Ian Bell, Tim Bresnan, Jade Dernbach, Steven Finn, Craig Kieswetter (wicketkeeper), Eoin Morgan, Samit Patel, Kevin Pietersen, James Tredwell.
Umpires: Steve Davis (Australia) and S Ravi
Third umpire: Vineet Kulkarni
Match Referee: Andy Pycroft (Zimbabwe)
Match starts at 12 noon IST