India v England, 2nd ODI, Delhi October 17, 2011

Bowlers, Kohli secure emphatic India victory


India 238 for 2 (Kohli 112*, Gambhir 84*) beat England 237 (Pietersen 46, Vinay 4-30) by eight wickets
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

A series of double-strikes at vital junctures in England's innings helped India limit the visitors to a below-par total in good batting conditions at the Feroz Shah Kotla, leaving their batsmen with a modest chase to secure a 2-0 lead in the five-ODI series. India's bowlers struck first at the beginning of the innings, next at the halfway stage and then at the start of the slog, forcing England to revert to a watchful approach when they had been well placed to surge.

Virat Kohli and Gautam Gambhir made short work of the target, helped by a fast outfield and short boundaries. After surviving a fiery new-ball spell from Steven Finn and helping India build after the early loss of the openers, both batsmen settled down to score with a fluency that had been visible only in patches in England's innings. Their 209-run partnership, during which Kohli raced to a century and Gambhir made a half-century, helped achieve the target of 238 with eight wickets in hand and 13.2 overs to spare.

The ease with which India chased on a dewy evening put their bowlers' effort, and that of Vinay Kumar who took a career-best 4 for 30, in perspective. India inflicted the first double-strike within the first two overs. Alastair Cook hoped to make best use of a pitch he felt would get slower as the match progressed but his duck was a setback to those plans. The fourth ball off the match, from Praveen Kumar, was short and wide and Cook cut it straight to Ravindra Jadeja at point. While Praveen was fortunate to strike with an ordinary delivery, Vinay Kumar produced a sharper ball in the second over to dismiss Craig Kieswetter - it bounced and seamed away from the right-hand batsman and took the outside edge of the tentative prod to a wide first slip.

The second brace of wickets occurred in the 25th and 26th overs. Bopara didn't pick a straighter one from R Ashwin and was lbw and Kevin Pietersen, who had found his fluency after a slow start, drove at and edged a wide ball from Umesh Yadav to give MS Dhoni a low catch.

Despite being reduced to 0 for 2 and 121 for 5, though, England hit boundaries regularly and had partnerships that helped them recover. What they didn't do well was take singles and twos - there were 172 dot balls in the innings. India would have only 108 dot balls in theirs. The first partnership, between Bopara and Pietersen, was worth 73, and the second, between Jonny Bairstow and Samit Patel, 86. All of those batsmen, in addition to Jonathan Trott, began to create problems for India but no one stayed long enough to cause significant damage.

Bairstow and Patel had led England to 207 in the 42nd over, when they also fell in successive overs - the third and decisive double-strike. Patel got a skiddy delivery from Yadav that kept low and struck him plumb in front, while Bairstow was caught on the long-off boundary. He had hit Jadeja hard and far but Kohli took the catch at head height just inside play. England had slumped to 211 for 7 and this time there was no recovery. The tail, which had caused India so many problems in England, did not contribute.

After 8.2 overs of the chase India were 35 for 2. England had been exactly the same in their innings. Tim Bresnan had dismissed Parthiv Patel and Ajinkya Rahane, but he wasn't England's most dangerous bowler. Finn was.

Finn clocked speeds of 150 kph and above consistently in his first spell. He beat Kohli with sheer pace after inducing an edge that went past slip for four. In the 10th over, Gambhir edged Finn past his stumps to the fine-leg boundary while attempting a cover drive. With three slips in place there was a huge gap between cover point and mid-off and Gambhir was aiming for it. He tried to steer once again, and Finn watched the outside edge fly wide of third slip once more. There was a third boundary in the over - Gambhir clipped a half-volley off his pads through square leg. Finn's frustration began to show and India began to pull away fast.

The other England bowlers caused no problems. Kohli pulled Jade Dernbach with a trace of arrogant dismissiveness, he drove Ravi Bopara with grace through cover, and Gambhir cut Graeme Swann behind point to bring up the 50-partnership off 42 balls.

Kohli reached his half-century off 45 balls, Gambhir got to his off 62. Both batsmen were level on 58 after 25 overs but thereafter Kohli began to race ahead with frequent boundaries and a constant turning over of the strike. He got to his century off only 89 balls with a deft glance off the pads against Jade Dernbach. He celebrated his seventh ODI hundred with a fist-pump. A few overs later, Kohli was fist-pumping again, after smashing Dernbach through midwicket to finish the game.

George Binoy is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Rana on October 21, 2011, 0:07 GMT

    Well English United get hammered By India B AGAIN, 3-0 and counting. As we "swim through sea of garbage", lets see what excuses are on offer. Woakes, already excused himself, who will be next? All the imports delivered yet same old. I wonder who looked old and slow? Absolutely pathetic fielding by England AGAIN.

  • Cricket on October 20, 2011, 23:09 GMT

    Cont'd I think we need specialist bowlers, who will most likely be spinners in India as Dhoni doesn't have pace bowlers that he can rely on. Ultimately Ind does not any world class bowlers at present but spinners have more chance to pick up wickets with turn in Ind than the pace bowlers do with their pace. If Dhoni does go with pacers then they don't even have to take wickets to be effective if they are bowling maidens or going for about 3 / 4 runs per over. They can do this with consistent line and length and Dhoni can also set a field to support them. You get more value for maiden overs in ODIs than in tests because you don't have to bowl out the other team in ODIs to win. Generally Ind pacers only bowl at about 125kph which is the same speed as Bopara, so there's no excuse and they're simply making like difficult for themselves and the batters.

  • Cricket on October 20, 2011, 23:08 GMT

    @Karthik Raja I suspect the reason Dhoni wants an all-rounder in the team is because like today he can't rely entirely on either his batters or bowlers. Yet again he had to come in and make a match-winning contribution on what was a good batting pitch. He is the all-rounder in the team so better to have a bowler in the team who is going to take wickets or keep pressure on by keeping runs down. The pacemen did not look like taking a wicket at all. Yadav was expensive again as was V Kumar who bowled with discipline in the 2nd ODI - was that a one off?. Could have another spinner instead of Yadav. I understand that the more he plays the better he will become, but if you compare him with Finn, Yadav has a long way to go. IMO Finn has been the outstanding player so far in this series and was unlikely not to have got more wickets which has been due to usually poor fielding. Yadav really needs to fix his radar in domestic games before he is let loose in Internationals.

  • Dilip on October 20, 2011, 14:51 GMT

    @JG sehwag wasn't fit but was bought back too early out of desperation (bad idea as he got injured again and lost more time) Yuvraj was the player of the tournament at the world cup. The fantastic broad you talk about was to be dropped before the 1st test but flower kept faith, Anderson might be the 2nd ranked bowler for england but in these conditions, would've got hammered again. check the team that played for india in the world cup and compare it to the one that played in england and the one playing here, not such a flawed argument i'd say.

  • Dummy4 on October 20, 2011, 7:21 GMT

    Cont'd. To put more precisely. If Ind hav KapilDev r even Irfan in their current squad, they can afford to drop Vinay/Jadeja and bring in an extra spinner which wud b Ojha. . Another logic - Ind can afford to drop a spinner easily than a pacer. Suppose we hv 2+2 combination. If d pitch seems to assist pace, hving only 2 pace wil hurt us. Bt on other hand(3+1), even if spin picks up gud. v can even get 20-25 overs from Jadeja/Raina/Kohli/Sehwag/Yusuf/Rohit. If thats d logic frm Dhoni's brain, I completely agree wid that. Wud like to knw ur views on this.

  • Dummy4 on October 20, 2011, 7:13 GMT

    @itsthewayuplay.. reg Team composition, every1 has their views. Dhoni has his own and he is Captain for a national Team much unlike we both.. So, it shud b respected. Since, we are more likely to hv the service of atleast 3 of Yuvraj,Raina,Yousuf,Sehwag,Kohli,Jadeja in ODI(all being slow bowlers) I wud agree wid wt Dhoni prefer. In Tests, we surely need a Bowling allrounder esp in seaming conditions. If not, we will end with long tail. I guess, u r confused. U r mentioning Steyn and Morkel when v talk abt Bowling allrounder. SA will hv 3 seamers. Steyn+Morkel+Tsotsube and a spinner in their squad. They cant afford to hv more than that. Bt, they r well compensated by Kallis. A batting allrounder. The logic is pretty simple. U hv batting alrounder. U can afford to hv one less bowler. If u hv bowling allrounder, U can afford to hv one less batsman - means u can hv one more bowler. Thats d need 4 Bowling allrounder. India hv batsman who can bowl. dats y v hv more batsman in our XI.

  • Dummy4 on October 20, 2011, 2:02 GMT

    By the end of this series we can access England's perfomance in their one day format. Alaistair Cook commented '' We are struggling in India as India struggled in England''. Cook must understand that India had close encounters against the England team during India's tour and England hardly managed a tie and a win due to the interruption of rain. But here in india, the series is turning out to be a one sided contest and England are looking helpless against the Indian batsmen as well as the spinners. They must try to rectify their weakness rather than saying we are a better team...

  • Mark on October 19, 2011, 19:21 GMT

    @Clement-Edwin I agree with you too. I certainly liked the 1980s England team far more than the current lot, except for Captain Andrew Strauss today's England side I quite like him. The rest of the modern England team despite their test successes I can't warm to them very well. You are right they had better techniques and more consistent than the current lot.

  • John on October 19, 2011, 19:16 GMT

    Re - Posted by on (October 19 2011, 14:17 PM GMT) Sorry , couldn't find JJ's original comms but didn't Australia beat Sri Lanka in Sri Lanka in recent months. I know Aus are not the force of old but I could see them climbing back up the test ladder. It is actually an unknown as to whether England can play TEST cricket in the sub continent with the current crop of players . They have beaten Australia and drawn with number 2 side South Africa which is fairly decent form I'd say. Time will tell.

  • John on October 19, 2011, 19:11 GMT

    @itsthewayuplay - Get what you're saying , but I would say there are OD all rounders out there although maybe not any genuine WC all rounders in England's OD line up. I remember when England had Luke Wright batting at 7 and not being trusted with the ball. Maybe someone like Monty Panassar could do enough of a job with the ball to merit selection?

  • No featured comments at the moment.