England v India, Only Twenty20, Old Trafford August 31, 2011

Morgan and Dernbach star in victory


England 169 for 4 (Morgan 49) beat India 165 (Rahane 61, Dernbach 4-22) by six wickets
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

Eoin Morgan and Jade Dernbach, England's matchwinners in their jaunt to Ireland earlier in the week, once again produced their one-day best as England scraped home by six wickets in a tense Twenty20 against India at Old Trafford. Morgan made 49 from 27 balls to break the back of a stiff 166-run target, after Dernbach's array of slower balls and yorkers had stopped India's big hitters in their tracks with career-best figures of 4 for 22 from 3.4 overs.

On a sluggish pitch, India chose to bat first and posted a competitive total of 165, thanks largely to an eye-catching 61 from 39 balls from the debutant Ajinkya Rahane. Rahul Dravid, in his first and last Twenty20 international appearance, smacked three consecutive sixes off Samit Patel to turn a previously laborious knock into a sprightly 31 from 21, while Suresh Raina put his miserable Test series to one side with a useful 33 from 19.

Dernbach and Morgan, however, produced the day's most captivating performances, and thanks to their combined efforts, England appeared to have the game in the bag with 32 runs still required from the final 29 deliveries of the contest. However, an exceptional 19th over from Munaf Patel went for just three runs, as Patel smashed his bat in two with an attempted cover drive, before Ravi Bopara was suckered by Munaf's line outside off and struggled to put bat on ball.

Needing ten from the final over, England then had a stroke of major fortune when umpire Rob Bailey erroneously called wide when Vinay Kumar pitched his first delivery just inside the tramlines. Suitably buoyed, Patel then squeezed a pair of fours through third man before sealing the match with a lofted drive over extra cover with three balls of the contest remaining.

England's innings had started ignominiously when the debutant Alex Hales - whose only other slice of the action had been a juggled catch at long-on which deflected off his shoulder - was suckered by Praveen Kumar's command of swing and pinned lbw for a second-ball duck. After three of their Powerplay overs England were floundering on 17 for 1, with a hyperactive Kevin Pietersen inside-edging their only boundary through third man, and they scarcely looked any more composed when Pietersen was dropped by a diving Parthiv Patel at third man.

Two balls later Craig Kieswetter found a thick edge for six off Munaf, and it wasn't until Pietersen whistled a conventional pull through square leg that their innings really found its feet. Vinay was muscled expertly through the covers twice in four balls by Kieswetter, before R Ashwin's first nine-ball over was bookended by two more Pietersen boundaries. At 58 for 1 after six, England were suddenly up and running.

That solid position was dented twice in the next seven balls, however. First Kieswetter holed out to short cover, then Pietersen's international summer was ended by a flash of inspiration from MS Dhoni, who moved down the leg side to gather a swinging delivery from the part-timer Virat Kohli, and whipped off the bails as Pietersen toppled out of his crease. He was gone for 33 from 23 balls, and at 60 for 3 after 7.1 overs, England were suddenly tottering.

It didn't take Morgan long to find his range, however. After seeing out Kohli's over, he drilled his first three balls from Rohit Sharma for four, four, six - two threaded cover-drives and a massive mow over deep midwicket. He added two more fours in Kohli's next two overs, then marked the resumption of play after a lengthy delay by clipping a Praveen full-toss off his pads through fine leg.

At the other end, Bopara struggled to match either Morgan's poise or placement, as he was made to wait 24 deliveries before cuffing his first boundary through deep midwicket off Ashwin. But while Morgan was in the zone, all he needed to do was stay with his partner. The pair added 73 for the fourth wicket in 8.1 overs, before Morgan was sweetly caught at point by Sharma. The decision required ratification from the third umpire, but was never seriously in doubt. And nor, at that stage, was the result.

Bopara's unconvincing 31 from 36 balls allowed India to regain a toe-hold in the game, and it wasn't the only aspect of England's performance that lacked conviction. Earlier, the notion of unsettling India's openers with the short ball backfired spectacularly as Rahane unveiled a range of cultured but aggressive strokes, including four fours in Stuart Broad's first two overs. His first-class average of 67 points to a player with a rounded technique that can cope with all eventualities, and as India muscled along to 49 for 1 in the six-over Powerplay, their prospects looked sky-high.

Bopara ended a second-wicket stand of 65 in seven overs when Dravid's debut ended with a drill to short extra cover. Five balls later, Rahane was on his way as well, as Dernbach at third man pocketed a cramped uppercut off Broad. Kohli came and went in the same Broad over as he flung his bat at a lifter outside off, and when Graeme Swann had Sharma stumped for 1, India had lost four wickets in 16 balls.

The stage was set for Raina, whose Test series had ended in such ignominy with a 42-ball pair at The Oval. His struggles against the short ball had been a recurring theme of the summer, although he proved a point of sorts by smashing a Broad bouncer with alacrity over midwicket for six. Two more sixes off Tim Bresnan gave India's innings a late lift, but Dernbach's variations were too cunning for the tail. India were bowled out with two balls of their allocation remaining, and how vital would those prove to be in the final analysis?

Andrew Miller is UK editor of ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • mohammed on September 3, 2011, 4:32 GMT

    That was rude man @ Arshad Siddique

  • Dummy4 on September 3, 2011, 0:03 GMT


  • puneet on September 2, 2011, 20:29 GMT

    Pardon my spellings in the previous posts- Have been having trobule with my Keyboard,Should have done done a final revision before sending it to post--PETE MUNDAY- lets put aside any emotioal attachement as far as supporting our home teams-I am looking forward to a much improved display from indian team in this ODI series and have already witnessed some signs---It would be great to end the tour on a winning note- Again empahising the fact this team is different than all the previous Indian Teams because they will fight back...

  • puneet on September 2, 2011, 18:08 GMT

    @BOBMARTIN- I fully agree with your views--All i have been saying is that Indian Teams of past use to be only potential threat to any opponent in their own backyards- Since Gary and Dhoni took over India's command- IT improved their record at vrious location while visiting higher ranked teams-Hard work paid off with a World Cup Glory as well-- Again i am not taking any credit away from the England Team but i would say that english team have to prove that while visiting sub continent- on vicously turning pitches- then they will have some nighmares like Shane Warne had-famed- best spinner in world then- Because the bottom line is if Indians are not that great in dealing genuine seam and swing bowling- England is no way near tackling Genuine SPIN- will struggle like any other team did while viviting subcontinent- I tried this time to give a very honest opinion from cricket point of view--All in all i have a feeling that india will be able to take this series by 3-2 if not 4-1 or 5-0.....

  • Dummy4 on September 2, 2011, 17:57 GMT

    puneet_usa Do you even follow test cricket ! England are not going through a purple patch , they have got to the number one ranking not because they thrashed a hopeless Indian side but because of increasingly good performances over the last 2 years. If you want to make boastfull predictions based on past history then more fool you but you reallyshould take note of whats happening right now..England are not currentlya good one day side but have visionary and highly professional management , they will improve , can you honestly say the same of India.

  • Bob on September 2, 2011, 16:20 GMT

    puneet_usa on (September 02 2011, 13:36 PM GMT)

    "I am looking forward to England going back to their good old ways of choking after hitting a purple patch for a little while"

    You mean like India did in the tests and T20. And I might remind you that India are NOT ODI world champions... they have merely won a single competition and are holders of the ODI world cup... The current ODI table toppers are Australia with India at number three... which is a far better reflection of their relative status than the world cup...where you only play a selection of the top teams over a limited period and all on your home grounds.... whereas the iCC table is calculated over a period of years of playing both home and away... So let's not try to make holding the world cup something that it isn't... But there again, if it gives you some consolation for the thrashing you've recently been handed, then go ahead.

  • JIGNESH on September 2, 2011, 16:11 GMT

    India, especially, Mr. Dhoni forgot how to win the matches. Your honeymoon is over buddy. Grow up. Once every nation was defeating England, and look at them now. No nation has gut to survive against England. They cannot always argue that they don't have good bowlers. They already have enough time to select their bowlers, but they never work on that. Every time they select Ishant, Sreesanth, Munaf, Zaheer, and Harbhajan, no matter they did not perform well in recent series. India's all specialized bowlers bowling averages are more that 30 runs per wicket. If any specialized bowlers bowling average more than 30 runs in any other team-AUS, ENG, PAK, SL, SA, won't survive. But generous-India keep giving them chances. What is this? Is it a salvation army or what?

  • puneet on September 2, 2011, 13:36 GMT

    I am looking forward to England going back to their good old ways of choking after hitting a purple patch for a little while and India on the other hand making England a one sided series lesson from current World Champions- Its gonno bleed "Blue" Aagain....and that will be a fitting end to an over rate-over hyped Enland series---!!!!!

  • Srinivas on September 2, 2011, 13:08 GMT

    Great. So, India can't bat out 20 overs. What a shame! Please remove Dhoni. He is a huge liability at that critical position in the batting line-up and that critical position behind the stumps. His Captaincy? Well, atrocious. Please bring in Dinesh Karthik, a wicket-keeper batsman beyond compare.

  • DINESH on September 2, 2011, 5:55 GMT


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