Bhuvneswhwar and Jadeja help India seal the series


Bhuvneshwar Kumar’s 3 for 15 helped India beat England for 121 ©Getty

India might have made four changes on its side, thanks to the return of the famous old guard, but the new spirit was still intact. Reaching a total of 170 proved to be a bit difficult, despite their new all-out approach, but they were able to defend it quite comfortably in a 49-point win at Edgbaston. It also brought an unassailable 2-0 lead and their fourth series win on the rebound against England.

New openers, new style for India

That Rishabh Pant was chosen as the first match ahead of Virat Kohli was a sign. And playing in keeping with their new style, India’s new opening pair plundered runs against the new ball, even if that meant some of them went through poorly timed edges and slogs. But clearly experimenting with a different style, the openers didn’t hold back and added 49 runs for the first wicket inside five overs. Subsequent batters followed the same approach.

Jadeja to the rescue after the fall of the ticket offices

The wickets are going to drop if you play such an offensive mark of cricket; the trick, perhaps, is not to panic. India did both at Edgbaston. Finding themselves at 89/5 from 49/0 at one point, they ensured they still reached 170, a total which proved to be more than sufficient. Getting to this kind of scoreline was also down to the team combination, which meant that despite trailing by five, India had Ravindra Jadeja and Dinesh Karthik in the crease.

Karthik was passed in the 16th by a pitch from Harry Brook, but Jadeja’s 46* on just 29 balls, with five limits and plenty of 2s even on a small pitch, kept India from falling behind. No less than 53 runs have been recorded in the last five overs, with Jadeja scoring 34.

How did India lose quick wickets at the top?

Thanks to Richard Gleeson, who at 34 became the oldest T20I debutant for England and finished with numbers of 4-1-15-3.

On pitch responding to difficult lengths, he broke India’s opening stand by bouncing Rohit Sharma and in his next over, went on to pick two big wickets on successive balls. Kohli, batting at No. 3, fell on a high edge to point while Pant came back on a low edge after going down the track. Chris Jordan also shone with the ball, picking Hardik Pandya and Suryakumar Yadav on consecutive balls as he finished with 4 for 27.

Bhuvneshwar too hot for England

Defending a goal of 171 is a touch and go issue for India? Think again. Bhuvneshwar Kumar hit with the first pitch of the set, sending the dangerous Jason Roy into a slide. And in the aftermath came big fish wicket Jos Buttler through an underboard, which Pant was pointed to spot and force India to go for the review. This was the fifth time Bhuvneshwar had Buttler’s number; he finished with 3 for 15 and was named Player of the Match.

England have completed 17 overs

Bumrah, who was back in the fold after a long test as captain, followed Bhuvneshwar’s twin strikes with the wicket of Liam Linvingstone, who was undone and knocked down by a slow counter-kick, and later with the counter of the dangerous Sam Curran. Yuzvendra Chahal, in the attack immediately after the PowerPlay, tricked Harry Brook into the air and had him taken deep as the Indian bowlers continued to pick up wickets down the middle. Both Bumrah and Chahal finished with 2-10 and didn’t even need to play their full quota of overs in a six-man attack.

Short scores: India 170/8 in 20 overs (Jadeja 46*; Jordan 4-27, Gleeson 3-15) beat England 121 in 17 overs (Moeen 35; Bhuvneshwar 3-15, Bumrah 2-10, Chahal 2- 10) by 49 points

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