India v England, 3rd ODI, Ranchi

India thrash England to take series lead

The Report by Alan Gardner

January 19, 2013

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India 157 for 3 (Kohli 77*, Tredwell 2-29) beat England 155 (Root 39, Jadeja 3-19) by seven wickets
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

MS Dhoni leaps after getting Ian Bell out caught, India v England, 3rd ODI, Ranchi, January 19, 2013
MS Dhoni claimed three caught behinds © BCCI
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MS Dhoni has not had too much to smile about in recent months, as his India side suffered unexpected home defeats in Test and ODI cricket, but he was able to pack away the defensive frown and wary gaze and enjoy the occasion in Ranchi, as India strolled to a seven-wicket victory in the first international match ever to be staged in his hometown. Dhoni was even out in the middle to hit the winning runs and soak up the atmosphere as England, who appeared as eager as the crowd to give him a day to remember, slipped 2-1 down in the five-match series.

All of India's bowlers contributed in a concerted display, aided by a touch of early movement and a middle-order collapse against spin of familiar proportions. Dhoni also claimed three catches, including a diving take to dismiss England's top-scorer, Joe Root, and a sharp chance at the wicket off Ian Bell, as England were once again spooked by the ghosts of their recent past in 50-over cricket in India, mustering a paltry 155.

India's innings proved that the pitch was a good one - the curator had predicted a score of 350 for the side batting first but he was obviously banking on that side being India. Although Steven Finn cleaned up Ajinkya Rahane again, bowled through the gate for the second time in as many matches, and James Tredwell claimed his sixth and seventh wickets of the series, Virat Kohli made sure England were the only ones doing any chasing. Kohli twice hammered Tredwell over the ropes, to go with a further nine fours in an unbeaten 77, his return to form yet another fillip for his captain.

England's total was their second-lowest batting first against India (in full matches), as they subsided from an initially promising 68 for 1. Although there was an element of luck about the second breakthrough, as the sound of Kevin Pietersen's bat on pad seemed to deceive the umpire into awarding a caught behind, India did not owe their victory to fortune. The early dismissals of Alastair Cook, Pietersen and Bell left the middle order exposed and despite another promising display of character from Root, who put on 47 with Tim Bresnan, India were always in control.

Smart stats

  • India won the match with 131 balls to spare, which is their largest margin of win in ODIs against England (in terms of balls remaining). The previous highest was 123, in Jaipur in 2006.
  • England's highest score in their innings was 39, which is the sixth-lowest top-score for them in a completed ODI against India.
  • England's total of 155 is their third-lowest all-out score in an ODI against India.
  • Virat Kohli has become the second-fastest cricketer to 4000 ODI runs, in terms of innings batted. Viv Richards achieved the landmark in 88 innings, while Kohli reached there in his 93rd.
  • For the second match in a row, three England batsmen were dismissed without scoring. Before the Kochi game, this had only happened four times for England in ODIs against India.
  • Ranchi became the 42nd Indian venue, and the 182nd venue in the world, to host a one-day international.

The gods had already smiled on Dhoni at the toss, as he was given the option and chose to insert an England side still apparently winded from their emphatic, 127-run defeat in Kochi on Tuesday. Although the pitch looked hard and flat, there was a light covering of grass and just enough moisture to aid the bowlers, further justifying Dhoni's decision, made ostensibly in view of the possibility of evening dew making the ball difficult to grip. By the time the sun set, however, it was the match that had slipped out of England's hands.

Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Shami Ahmed bowled impressive opening spells and although Cook christened the ground with its first international boundary, in the second over, England's captain was soon undone by swing. The fans at the newly constructed 39,000-capacity Jharkhand State Cricket Association Stadium had come to see only one inspirational leader among the two sides, and the cheer that went up when he moved across his stumps to be hit in front by a Shami delivery that curved back at him confirmed it was not Cook.

Pietersen is an England player capable of whipping up an Indian crowd but they were even more delighted by his downfall. Having added 44 in 41 balls with Bell, both batsmen fell in consecutive overs, Pietersen given out after again briefly threatening despite there being no apparent edge. Pietersen was visibly reluctant to drag himself away after fencing at a length ball from Ishant Sharma that rose sharply, the awkwardness of his stroke forcing the bat into the flap of his front pad. If there was doubt about that dismissal, there was none three balls later as Dhoni collected a scrape off the toe of Bell's bat while standing up to Bhuvneshwar.

England were never able to feel at home on the Ranchi surface and India's hold on the match was further strengthened as Morgan tamely lobbed the ball to short-third man. Morgan laboured for 10 off 30 balls in a manner reminiscent of his poor form in the UAE last year, playing and missing against the quicks before getting out attempting a premeditated reverse-swipe through point against R Ashwin. Ravindra Jadeja then burst one through a loose defensive shot from Craig Kieswetter and pinned Samit Patel lbw pushing half forward as three wickets fell for one run in nine balls to send the crowd into further raptures.

Root again dropped anchor, displaying familiar circumspection and timing a handful of boundaries. He and the returning Bresnan - the one change on either side - formed a Yorkshire coalition in an attempt to heave England towards a respectable total but a loose drive from Root gave Ishant his second wicket and the spinners quickly cleaned up the tail.

Before the start, there was already a palpable sense of anticipation in the ground at the return of Dhoni, India's captain and their standard-bearer during a testing recent run in ODI cricket. A light aircraft trailed a message in coloured smoke across the milky blue sky as Dhoni was interviewed at the toss. "It's a big moment for me but it's important to be focused," he said.

Dhoni also suggested that he may have played cricket with "at least 15,000" of the crowd, during his tennis-ball days as a youngster in Jharkhand, but his ten team-mates on the pitch were more than enough to rout a dismal England.

Alan Gardner is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

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© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by Harmony111 on (January 22, 2013, 17:48 GMT)


Alright dear, I take your point and nod in agreement with the opportunism you talk of. :-)

Posted by Shan156 on (January 22, 2013, 17:45 GMT)

@MAR00N5, remind us, since you care so much about #1 ranking, who was #1 before India took over last week in ODIs?

@JG2704, I hope what @Harmony111 says is true (that majority of the Indians love test cricket). Because, if they have more 'fans' like @MAR00N5, then test cricket will die soon. Already we are seeing 2 test series between SA and Aus. SL doesn't host more tests these days. That is why I was quite glad to see India play a lot of 4 test series and, in fact, they will be playing a 5 test series in England next time. For the sake of test cricket at least, we need a strong Indian team.

Posted by 30-30-150 on (January 22, 2013, 16:35 GMT)

@yorkshiregenius - "win couple of ODIs once in a blue moon" Oh yeah, that's why ICC ranks India No.1 in ODIs, eh?

Posted by JG2704 on (January 22, 2013, 15:31 GMT)

@Shan156 on (January 21 2013, 03:16 AM GMT) Mate , I totally agree although I think you may be fighting a losing battle with Billy Joel although I'd say more Prodigy (hopefully you'll get that one). I think folk don't even know what they type half the time. The guy who was saying he hated tests was commenting plenty on the last series when results were going the way he liked but then went missing but according to his friend he doesn't hate tests - he just prefers ODIs/T20s . Funny , I remember at one point he categorically said he hated Tests and wasn't even interested in international T20s - just IPL. Please publish this time

Posted by IluvInd123 on (January 22, 2013, 12:14 GMT)

@yorkshiregenius : Same question to u Mr. Genius. Wat's the difference b/w Afghan & ur team? Both never won World Cup and Ind did it twice and other countries playing cric considerable amt of time have won. Lol... No hard feelings plz ....

Posted by yorkshiregenius on (January 22, 2013, 8:58 GMT)

@MAR00N5: It doesn't matter if you can't win test matches but your comments like "who cares about Test cricket" make me feel like why you guys still play any form of cricket. If you don't play test matches then what's the difference between your team and Afghanistan cricket team? Because both teams win couple of ODIs once in a blue moon in between numerous series defeats...ROFLOL

Posted by 30-30-150 on (January 22, 2013, 8:29 GMT)

@RednWhiteArmy.. England may be a better Test team than India but who cares about Test cricket? Us Indians treat Test cricket just like how you English treat limited-overs, i.e, we don't care. The turn-out at the stadiums during Test matches in India justifies the fact. Anyhow Test cricket is gonna die out, ODIs and T20s will stay for a very long time and we are the kings of these formats.

Posted by Fast_Track_Bully on (January 22, 2013, 7:14 GMT)

@EnglishCricket. Yes. It should be England who lost 12 out of 13 games played in India. nice joke. First achieve something by beating others. At least we were able to hold test no:1 for more than 1 year. You will tell WC too will be given to Engalnd as you started playing it early. lol

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