England v India, 1st ODI, Chester-le-Street September 3, 2011

India denied as rain wrecks contest


7.2 overs England 27 for 2 (Trott 14*, Bell 2*) v India 274 for 7 (Parthiv 95, Kohli 55) - match abandoned
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

Parthiv Patel's frustration at falling five runs short of his maiden international century was matched by that of his team as a whole, as India's hopes of their first victory of the summer against England were thwarted by a washout in the opening ODI at Chester-le-Street. Chasing a stiff target of 275, England had been struggling on 27 for 2 after 7.2 overs after a fine new-ball display from the swing bowler, Praveen Kumar, but despite two attempts at a restart, the umpires eventually abandoned the match at 5.30pm.

It was a cruel end to a contest in which India made all the running, yet still finished with a net loss going into the second match at the Rose Bowl on Tuesday, after their hard-hitting middle-order batsman, Rohit Sharma, suffered a broken right index finger from the the one and only delivery he faced from Stuart Broad. With Sachin Tendulkar missing the match as well due to an inflamed right toe, India's casualty list for the tour is almost into double figures. Tendulkar, who remains stuck on 99 international hundreds, is due to see a specialist later this week.

Despite all that, India could and should have won this one. Alastair Cook's decision to insert his opponents on a seam-friendly wicket was influenced by the unusually early 10.15am start, but it was Parthiv and his ODI debutant sidekick Ajinkya Rahane who claimed the early initiative, as they reached 33 for 0 after a cautious first nine overs, before accelerating through the bowling Powerplay to post a first-wicket stand of 82 - India's highest in ten innings against England this summer, and their first in excess of 50 since the Lord's Test in July.

Parthiv, whose appearance in Wednesday's Twenty20 at Old Trafford had been his first against England since India's Test tour in 2002, showcased a range of eyecatching strokes including a confident pull to repel England's short-pitched approach, and a cunning ramp over the slips to dent James Anderson's figures after a typically tidy start to this day's work.

Parthiv had one key let-off, on 7, when the local debutant, Ben Stokes, spilled a low edge in the gully off Tim Bresnan, but beyond that he was virtually chanceless until, with a hundred in his sights, he was lured into a wild drive to a wide ball from Anderson, and snicked a simple chance to the keeper, Craig Kieswetter.

Virat Kohli, who was unused in the Tests, backed up Parthiv's efforts with a battling 55 from 73 balls in a third-wicket stand of 103, while Suresh Raina again proved he's a transformed character in coloured clothing, as he racked up 38 from 29, including a brace of sixes off Broad and Jade Dernbach.

It was Dernbach who eventually extracted Raina in the penultimate over of the innings, courtesy of another brilliantly disguised slower ball - this time a bouncer - that took an eternity to reach the batsman and was eventually flapped to short backward square. MS Dhoni, whose form has been unconvincing so far on this tour, never quite got going to the same degree. He had managed 33 from 36 balls before feathering a loose carve off Bresnan, who then yorked R Ashwin first ball to keep India's total below 280 in a superb final over.

India's imposing total was achieved despite yet another controversial dismissal for Rahul Dravid, following on from the shoe-lace incident at Edgbaston and the disputed bat-pad catch at The Oval. He made 2 from six balls before umpire Billy Doctrove initially turned down an appeal for caught-behind off Broad, only for the decision to be reversed on review, despite no clear evidence from Hot Spot.

Broad, who had earlier removed Rahane for 40 from 44 balls via a top-edged pull to fine leg, was also responsible for Sharma's tour-threatening injury. He had come to the crease after Parthiv's departure, but lasted one delivery before being forced to retire hurt after an excellent lifter from Broad rapped Sharma on the gloves. He was in clear pain as the physio attempted to pull the damaged joint back into position, and the suspected break was confirmed by the BCCI soon afterwards.

With six wins out of six so far on India's tour, England came into the contest brimful of confidence, but without their star spinner, Graeme Swann, who failed to recover from a virus and was replaced by Patel. But after a chastising time in the field, England's day got even worse when their own turn came to bat.

In the 40 minutes that were possible before England's chase was interrupted, Praveen's performance opened up a gulf between the two teams that would have been hard to surmount had the match resumed either with 224 required from 32 overs, or with 164 required from 20 - the two proposed scenarios when the rain did threaten to abate. Though Jonathan Trott had been nailing his cover-drives nicely in a run-a-ball 14 not out, the going had been tough at the top of the innings.

First to fall was the captain Cook, who had been in ruthless form against Sri Lanka in the last ODI series of the summer in June, but whose only scoring shot in ten attempts on this occasion was a first-ball edge past second slip for four. Kumar refused to allow him even to escape the strike, and midway through his second over, he cramped Cook on the cut, and bent an inswinger into his stumps, via a bottom edge.

At the other end, Craig Kieswetter had an even less productive stay. He too got off the mark first-ball, with a clip for two through midwicket, but was then pinned down for 13 consecutive deliveries before a rare bad ball from Praveen was turned off the hip for four. He hadn't added to his score when Praveen bent a delivery into his front pad, and he was sent on his way lbw for 6 from 19 balls. In the end, England dodged a bullet, but after two months of one-way traffic on this tour, India served a timely reminder of their formidable reputation over 50 overs.

Andrew Miller is UK editor of ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • yogi on September 5, 2011, 6:10 GMT

    well done Australia. I am an Indian/Rahul Dravid supporter, but I still feel that Australia are the best(other than 20-20) in the world. That India was No.1 for a couple of years,was more due to our persistance at not loosing tests, rather than winning matches. Sad but true.Though England are No.1 in tests, at present, they won't stay there for long. Australia is coming hard at everybody. Watch out England.Most/all of the teams in the world (including India & Pakistan) find it either hard or impossible to beat SL in SL. As far as SL is concerned, welcome on board, you are losing your touch(just as we are). Days are not far ahead when Bangladesh and Zimbabwe will beat you. Bring back Vaas, Murali and Jayasurya.

  • Kamran on September 4, 2011, 20:53 GMT

    It seems a little paradoxical that a lot of SL fans in this forum keep criticising India for their poor performance this summer in England. Agreed that it was a disasterous test series for India, but what have Sri Lanka exactly won outside the subcontinent in their entire history as a cricket playing nation. Have they ever won a series in England or for that matter test matches in either Aus or SA. India has atleast done that. SL fans should do some serious intropection before commenting on India's performance. Or is it simply the case of sour grapes at losing the WC final to India recently.

  • Sukwinder on September 4, 2011, 13:44 GMT

    Very sad that the rain wrecked India's chance of winning the match!! But I am still in euphoria coz we have won three tour matches!! Otherwise this team would have been named "DHONI'S LOSERS" just like "Bradman's Invincibles!"

  • Cricket on September 4, 2011, 12:25 GMT

    The results are not important for this ODI but the performaces are. India must use this ODI as an opportunity to go back to basics eg opening batsmen to take their to adjust to the pace, look for gaps in the field rather than just 4s and 6s, turn 1s into 2s, 2s into 3s without risk of run outs, not giving their wickets away, bowlers to bowl line and length and not to the strengths of the English batsmen, Dhoni to set fields to make run scoring difficult even it makes for dull cricket, stopping singles so batsmen have to go over the top thereby creating chances and so on. All players should use this opportunity to get use to the conditions so they are better prepared for the next England tour and the future generally. Above all don't drawn verbal exchanges - it's a sign their bowlers are getting frustated. We saw this in the 4th test with Sachin and Mishra and signs their bowlers were losing their discipline. Then Mishra got out followed by the inevitable collapse.

  • Cricket on September 4, 2011, 12:09 GMT

    @demon_bowler although India were thrashed particularly in the last 2 tests they had england at 62-5 and 124-8 plus 1st innings lead of 70 odd in the 1st 2 tests. What India didn't have is 4 bowlers who performed consistently or strength in depth. @dicky_boy I am long suffering Indian fan but am amazed at my fellow supporters who think that we have, say, Sehwag who will come in and score 300+ without any match practice or we won the WC so we're going to win the ODI series now. A lot of hard work went into the WC over a period of time but for this series it seems that some of the players would just turn up and win. India's performance off the field by BCCI has been scandalous but masked by performances on the field by the big 3 and Zaheer and previously Ganguly and Kumble. Where is the succession planning and new names to replace the old. Kumble was not the greatest turner of the ball but was intelligent and a warrior competitor. Who now apart from Dravid has these qualities?

  • Valavan on September 4, 2011, 11:51 GMT

    @Indian fans, Speak after winning a match.

  • Dummy4 on September 4, 2011, 11:49 GMT

    @dicky_boy, i know india won the worldcup, theres no doubt about that. well i guess you forgot what happened to England only last year? the same team who posted 600+ scores a number of times were dismissed for not more than 300 or occasionally 400, well thats a stat you would like to look at!

  • Cr1cket_Lover on September 4, 2011, 11:25 GMT

    Good news for us India fans, we can't lose 5-0 anymore... England still have the mental edge, so a series loss for us is not out of the question. I bet though that we win the match - we are excellent in the early games of an ODI series, but we shrivel up in decider games...

  • Valavan on September 4, 2011, 11:20 GMT

    Funny fans speak the same as SL after 1996 WC win. We are world champions so on. England is not still a dominant side, but surely better than Indian counterpart. You have a Team of champions, we have champion team. Ye ye if T20 would have abanded after 0 for 1, these could have been comments. BTW even SL won 2 ODIs in England, without even winning an international game, so much smoke comes out of indian fans rather fire. WC champions are No.3 in ODI rankings, during Aussie domination it wasnt the same story. Keep your starstudded team and make your windies series 3 - 0 to get points. But be aware if aussies will keep discipline like now, you will be just whacked out in Australia as well.

  • david on September 4, 2011, 11:03 GMT

    thank god india did not win. all this euphoria for a washed out game. it must have been a long wait this summer. dpk

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