England v India, 3rd ODI, Trent Bridge August 29, 2014

England seek limited-overs reboot


Match facts

Saturday, August 30, 2014
Start time 10.30am local (0930 GMT)

Play 01:51
Hopps: England have bowling dilemma

Big Picture

There was a century from an Indian middle-order batsman to resuscitate an innings going astray. In reply, England's batting faltered. That only increased questions over Alastair Cook's captaincy. India went 1-0 up. England in disarray. We've been here before. The rigours of limited-overs cricket might pale to Tests, as MS Dhoni has often pointed out on this tour, but in a four-match series success hinges on the ability to harness advantages. England will know India haven't been outstanding in that department. And India will know England are still discovering their identity as an ODI side.

They are testing a new opening partnership, which in the last two years has produced only one century stand. Cook was part of that and has politely brushed aside the punches aimed at himself and his team through the summer. Occasionally he has thrown them back. But his words will ring hollow unless accompanied with examples on the field. Lately though, the ammunition is in the hands of their critics: West Indies had them 89 for 6 chasing 160 in March, Sri Lanka routed them for 99 in May, India had given them a shock at the Champions Trophy final and did it again in Cardiff. The visitors have England down, but how long can they maintain that?

Rohit Sharma, one of the more important variables in India's one-day formula, is out injured. The top three haven't managed the kind of foundations Dhoni prefers. The India captain likes his cogs in place. He likes a strong score on the board. He likes to come in late and hike the total further. He likes a couple of early wickets so his spinners can prey on uncertain batsmen. He knows how to work his individual resources to harmonise with each other, like an orchestra conductor. However, in the past five years, India have lost four series on the road and one of their two successes have been against Zimbabwe. Dhoni and his team would want to prove they have the requisite ruthlessness that comes with being world champions.

Form guide (last five completed matches, most recent first)

England LLLWL

Players to watch

India's top order has often been stuck in the dressing room, watching their team-mates or their opponents cash in when the pitch eases out. None would know that rankle as much as Shikhar Dhawan. He sees the region outside his off stump as if it is poison. His feet are often splayed on leg stump with his hands leading away from him. When in form, he can be fluent through that very region but he needs to last beyond the early overs to rediscover that.

England might be reeling under the impression of being stolid, but in Eoin Morgan they have a batsman that can upset most bowling attacks. His range of strokes often goes beyond the textbook, unlike the top order's which has helped him average 55.50 in the Royal London One-Day Cup. He has Middlesex's lone century so far in the tournament so far and England will hope the seeds he sowed in the domestic circuit bear fruit for them too.

Team news

England's batting, if they can live up to potential, can offer challenge. But the composition of their bowling might be of greater concern. They have a left-arm seamer in Harry Gurney with the squad who could offer some variation.

England (probable) 1 Alastair Cook (capt), 2 Alex Hales, 3 Ian Bell, 4 Joe Root, 5 Eoin Morgan, 6 Ben Stokes/ Moeen Ali, 7 Jos Buttler (wk), 8 Chris Woakes, 9 Chris Jordan/ Harry Gurney, 10 James Anderson, 11 James Tredwell

The loss of an opening batsman leaves India with little options. They have flown M Vijay back, but he hasn't arrived in England yet. The team management is likely to promote Ajinkya Rahane to open and employ Ambati Rayudu at No.4.

India (probable) 1 Shikhar Dhawan, 2 Ajinkya Rahane, 3 Virat Kohli, 4 Ambati Rayudu/ Sanju Samson, 5 Suresh Raina, 6 MS Dhoni (capt & wk), 7 Ravindra Jadeja, 8 R Ashwin, 9 Bhuvneshwar Kumar, 10 Mohammed Shami, 11 Mohit Sharma

Pitch and conditions

Trent Bridge has plenty to make up for after the pitch for the opening Test was deemed poor. A chance to redress that comes with the added bonus that rain would be expected to play, at worst, a minimal part. The batsmen can expect a true deck, with Alex Hales, the hometown boy, bashing a century and overpowering a target of 303 last week.

Stats and trivia

  • James Anderson averages 19.37 at Trent Bridge, as compared to an overall figure of 28.91

  • India have only played four ODIs at Trent Bridge and have lost three of them. Their lone victory was against England in 1990


"We still need to achieve a lot of goals, goals that we have set in team meetings. Hopefully we will do well in upcoming games."
Suresh Raina relays that India are keen to build on their work so far

"We're not hiding behind the fact it was a poor team performance all round but we spoke about it, wiped the slate clean and we've talked about our tactics and we're feeling fresh and confident heading into this game.''
Alex Hales and England are looking for a new start.

Alagappan Muthu is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Android on August 31, 2014, 17:23 GMT

    Cook ,bell and Andersson should.not play one day cricket they are pure test players. Morgan should be made captain

  • rajmohan on August 30, 2014, 11:22 GMT

    @neil99 Agreed to an extent....but Bell is the player who can be the fulcrum of the batting allowing the likes of Buttler and Morgan to settle in and accelerate.

    Trott was also seen in the same galling light as Bell these days. If England want to go beyond the Q/F at the world cup, 1.Hales 2.Lumb 3.Bell(c) 4.Root 5.Morgan 6.Bopara 7.Buttler 8.Woakes 9.Tredwell 10.Anderson 11.Finn 12.Ali(swapped in for the odd SCG-esque pitch for Woakes)

  • deepak on August 30, 2014, 9:34 GMT

    media here in India especially the local regional ones are so backward in the sector of sports they easily forget the humiliations happened/hav been happening in test series/serieses when winning the One day lasting game so pathetic. so I really wish England to win the rest of the matches in the series, so that Indians will bring the test series as well back to minds when the team comes back home and treat accordingly for the players to change their attitude and to ACCEPT THE FACT THAT THEY ARE JUST SUB CONTINENT TRACK BULLIES and to behave accordingly,

  • Neil on August 30, 2014, 9:25 GMT

    @ 1st April

    York-86 is 100% correct. Maybe Bell dawdling along with a SR of 76 is one of the main reasons England has underachieved? A top ODI side can not have 3-4 batsmen with SRs in the 70s. Granted, Cook too must go, but Root should be handed a few more games.

  • Neil on August 30, 2014, 9:16 GMT

    Cook must stand down or be removed from the one day side immediately. Putting his LOI captaincy and batting limitations aside - which are immense - he can't possibly lead the team over the next 18 months in tests & LOIs with the most difficult schedule ahead in terms of quantity & quality of opposition. If Cooks to stay, he must be saved for test match cricket.

    It's a fine example of Cook, Moores & the ECB not understanding the bigger picture - but with a home series win under their belts to a very poor India side everything is just rosy. England are champions again. Champions of mediocrity.

  • Dummy4 on August 30, 2014, 9:14 GMT

    All the best 2 India 2 register a another historic win over English men side.

  • Ed on August 30, 2014, 9:12 GMT

    I can't believe Cook and Bell are in this side, and Roy, Ballance etc are not selected. Utter madness.

  • Android on August 30, 2014, 8:42 GMT

    India may certainly be a weaker side overseas and even inexperienced but rank it with Bangladesh and Zimbabwe is a nice joke. In fact it is a good insult to the English team. A team of Zimbabwe's caliber(if you indeed insist upon it)defeated Eng at the Lords which is certainly a very shameful thing for a side that is certainly of the highest cricketing caliber. Now talking of ODI cricket, India certainly is doing a lot better than tests. But I think it is time Kohli and Dhawan start making more efforts, on field. England need to get out of the Test mode. They were brilliant there but now they need to adapt. It is similar for both the sides and both sides need to consider specialist teams for specific formats. Anyway they solve their problems, I hope they would do it soon as I am sure all the cricket fans are eager for a contest which we were denied first by India in tests and now by England in ODIs.

  • John on August 30, 2014, 8:37 GMT

    Aravind Sai Kuchibhotla - Re India - I don't think you need to do an awful lot with the SF side. Fielding is always an area where I feel India could improve upon but apart from that I wouldn't bother too much about a fast bowling all rounder for English conditions. They did well in the CT without one and guys like Jadeja seem to do well in SFs wherever. They need (if they want to succeed) to toughen up as far as tests are concerned. They have twice been a test up vs Eng and lost each series and I don't totally buy the inexperience thing - Kumar had 6 tests before this series and was by far your best player. And the last time you visited you had players from the previous era you mentioned and did worse. I wonder if it is more a mental thing than a technical thing as you started off this series ok and won your test on the greenest pitch where Eng won the toss...

  • John on August 30, 2014, 8:35 GMT

    @Aravind Sai Kuchibhotla on (August 30, 2014, 7:02 GMT) When you 1st started saying about Eng shouldn't be too happy about beating India in Eng I thought it would be one of those one sided rants but was pleasantly surprised to see a fairly balanced post.

    Re England - (one thing I'll correct you on) is that we are in the top 3 in tests right now although we need to show much more if we want to stay there and get closer to Aus and SA. The 3 Asian sides below are fairly similar in quality. I still wonder about Ali as a frontline spinner. We definitely need another spinner - maybe another 2 long term unless Ali has improved that much with the ball. Re ODIs - there are so many issues that it will take too long but in a nutshell I'd say we're too conservative with the bat , don't put enough emphasis on economy with the ball and all round too regimented

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