India v England, 4th ODI, Mohali January 22, 2013

India search for series win to celebrate No. 1 spot


Match facts

January 23, 2013
Start time 1200 (0630 GMT)

Big Picture

How quickly this series has turned. In the first ODI in Rajkot, India were beaten in conditions that they usually prosper in, and coming on the heels of the series defeat to Pakistan, India's home one-day prowess was under the scanner. Alastair Cook and Ian Bell had looked masterful as they put on 158, England's highest opening partnership against India. In the next match, 158 was all what the entire England team managed. In the third ODI, England couldn't even muster that, keeling over for 155 and were looking more and more like the hapless outfits that suffered 5-0 reverses in their previous two visits.

There is talk of this being an inexperienced England side, though their biggest concern this series is the faltering top order which is packed with players who have been around for years. The only significant batting absentee is Jonathan Trott, whose un-flamboyant batting has typically split opinion over his place in the one-day side despite an unimpeachable average nearing 50. In his absence, his value is continuing to grow.

India, on the other hand, are now atop the world rankings, and what is traditionally their weaker department - the bowling - has flourished in the previous two matches. The much-derided Ravindra Jadeja has turned in influential performances in both victories, and Bhuvneshwar Kumar has compensated for his lack of pace with movement to trouble the top order. Virat Kohli, the ICC's ODI Player of the Year, also shrugged aside his indifferent recent form to pocket his first Man-of-the-Match award of 2013 in the last match. One more win will wrap up the series and give some relief to a side that has weathered plenty of criticism in recent times.

Form guide

(Most recent first)
England LLWLW

In the spotlight

Ajinkya Rahane spent much of the past year carrying drinks, having been part of the Indian squad in all three formats without getting too many matches. Finally, in this series, he has got chances, but has been bowled through the gate early by Steven Finn in the last two ODIs. He will have fond memories of Mohali, though, winning his only ODI Man-of-the-Match award the last time these two sides played here.

While not the flashiest of batsman, Joe Root has shown his ability to stabilise the innings when his more experienced colleagues have come up short. On the flat track in Rajkot, he was shunted down the order to allow more expansive batsmen time in the middle, but with the team struggling in the next two games, he took over the steadying role that Trott has perfected.

Team news

England are considering a couple of changes to their XI. They are toying with the idea of bringing in Jos Buttler as wicketkeeper-batsman for Craig Kieswetter, and Jade Dernbach, who now has the unwanted record of being the most expensive among ODI bowlers who have sent down 1000 deliveries, could make way for Stuart Meaker. Steven Finn injured his finger during a fielding drill but is expected to be fit in time for the match.

England (probable) 1 Alastair Cook (capt), 2 Ian Bell,3 Kevin Pietersen, 4 Joe Root, 5 Eoin Morgan, 6 Samit Patel, 7 Jos Buttler (wk), 8 Tim Bresnan, 9 James Tredwell, 10 Steven Finn, 11 Stuart Meaker

India are likely to go in with the same XI that served them so well in the previous two victories.

India (probable) 1 Gautam Gambhir, 2 Ajinkya Rahane, 3 Virat Kohli, 4 Yuvraj Singh, 5 Suresh Raina, 6 MS Dhoni (capt &wk), 7 Ravindra Jadeja, 8 R Ashwin, 9 Bhuvneshwar Kumar, 10 Shami Ahmed, 11 Ishant Sharma

Pitch and conditions

England are now left needing to win both the remaining matches in the series, but one consolation is that the next match will be in Mohali, where the track traditionally favours the quick bowlers and the temperatures will be in the mid-teens - conditions which Ian Bell termed as 'English'.

  • In 96 ODIs, Virat Kohli already has 13 Man-of-the-Match awards, which is more than Michael Bevan (232 matches) and Michael Clarke (223 games)
  • There have been six ODI hundreds scored in Mohali, but none of them have been made by an Indian


"It was a bit annoying for me as I was not getting out making too many mistakes. I got a few good balls in the last series and made a few mistakes in this series. But, I was pretty calm at that point of time. You just got to be composed. "
Virat Kohli, on his lean returns before the previous match.

"We have a point to prove, absolutely. We spoke about it. It can be quite easy in this part of the world that if you get on a bad trot, you can let your heads drop and we can't allow that to creep in."
England spinner James Tredwell hopes the team can stage a turnaround.

Siddarth Ravindran is a senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Indian on January 23, 2013, 18:26 GMT

    @mzm149 : maybe its noticeable for Cook/KP since they were the only ones who turned up to bat :)... given the 100+ runs thrashing don't think anyone else actually did anything! I bet you also missed the reprieve for KP today? yes... if not for that then this one too was shaping for a 100+ runs thrashing. Maybe India should let Cook bat thrice in the 4th one?

  • Muhammad on January 23, 2013, 16:36 GMT

    It is strange that throughout the series including tests and t20s, it was one of Cook/ Pietersen who became victims of poor umpiring by Indian umpires.

  • Indian on January 23, 2013, 15:28 GMT

    Bad decisions for Gambhir, Rohit and Cook... KP got a reprieve as well.. in any case the way India are playing they are more than capable of beating England, DRS or not :)

    Don't agree with the "dead ball" though... it should be a no-ball with a free hit. They need to change the laws to reflect this! Ridiculous that an international player can't get rid of such a bad habit!!

  • Indian on January 23, 2013, 15:26 GMT

    India won fair and square!! well done India!!

    Think with majority of the bad decisions going against India, BCCI might reconsider stand on DRS... still shouldn't be used for predictive decisions.. but will be nice to have for plain review.

  • Bob on January 23, 2013, 12:41 GMT

    I think it's time the ICC woke up.. If cricket matches of any description are being played between two of the test playing nations, they need international standard umpires. Indeed, top players deserve top umpires. Some of the decisions given in this ODI series have been a disgrace and you wouldn't expect them in a minor counties match, much less an international one.

  • Nicholas on January 23, 2013, 12:04 GMT

    @sannthu_ckt (post on January 22 2013, 19:08 PM GMT): so by your logic, England are undoubtedly the best cricket nation in the world at the moment. If you take into account England's positions in the ICC Rankings, and assign points for position in each format, England come out on top as they are amongst the top in every format.

  • vishwas on January 23, 2013, 10:09 GMT

    well played root..... ..............................

  • vishwas on January 23, 2013, 9:30 GMT

    seems like england depends lot on cook...... they wont last long in thier top even in tests if they depend lot on cook..... certainly cook is in prime form.... if tats gone then no future for england...sad to see cook got bad decision... but thats part of game.... kp got 1 in his favour in early in his innings.....

  • gerry on January 23, 2013, 9:00 GMT

    another poor umpiring decision stops England in their tracks again. going well then a ball a foot outside off is given out. if any country needs DRS... it's India with their dubious umpires.

  • Yousuf on January 23, 2013, 8:51 GMT

    Another pathetic decision by the Indian umpire in giving Cook out .

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