After a gap of 25 days following the completion of the five-Test series which was won 4-0 by Virat Kohli’s India, the Men in Blue took on Eoin Morgan’s England at the MCA Stadium in Pune in the first of three-ODI series.
England were always going to be a different animal in the limited-overs series against India, thanks to their long batting line-up comprising of genuine stroke makers like Jason Roy, Jos Buttler, Eoin Morgan, and Ben Stokes, to name a few, and the overall resurgence of the ODI side since the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015.
The Indian ODI side, on the other hand, had regressed since the last quadrennial tournament, winning just three of the six ODI series, with two of those ODI series wins coming against Zimbabwe in 2015 and 2016. Before the start of the limited-overs series against the Poms, MS Dhoni relinquished limited-overs captaincy and passed over the mantle to Virat Kohli, who now became the captain of the Indian Test, ODI and T20I sides.
Pune ODI Match Facts
India v England 2017 ODI Series, First ODI
Match date and time: 15th January 2017; 1:30 PM (day-night)
Match venue: MCA Stadium, Pune
India v England 2017 Pune ODI Scorecard
Toss was won by Virat Kohli, who chose to field first.
|Batsman and Dismissal||Runs Scored||No. of 4s||No. of 6s||Strike
stumped Dhoni, bowled Jadeja
run out Bumrah
Caught Pandya, bowled Bumrah
caught Dhoni, bowled Pandya
caught Dhawan, bowled Pandya
caught Umesh, bowled Bumrah
|Didn’t bat||Adil Rashid and Jake Ball|
|Extras||22 (6 wides, 4 no balls, 11 leg byes, and 1 bye)|
|England’s total||350 for the fall of 7 wickets in 50 overs (7.00 runs per over)|
|Bowler||Overs||Maidens Bowled||Runs Conceded||Wickets Taken||Economy
|Indian Innings (Target: 351)|
|Runs Scored||No. of 4s||No. of 6s||Strike Rate|
caught Ali, bowled Willey
caught Willey, bowled Stokes
caught Buttler, bowled Stokes
caught Willey, bowled Ball
caught Stokes, bowled Ball
caught Rashid, bowled Ball
|Didn’t bat||Umesh Yadav and Jasprit Bumrah|
|Extras||16 (11 wides, 4 leg byes and 1 bye)|
|India’s total||356 for the fall of 7 wickets in 48.1 overs (7.40 runs per over)|
|Runs Conceded||Wickets Taken||Economy
|Match result||India won by three wickets, with Kedar Jadhav bagging the man-of-the-match award for his breathtaking 76-ball 120|
The visitors got off to a good start with Roy playing proper cricketing shots and demoralising the Indian bowlers with his sublime timing and placement. India needed a run out to make the first breakthrough of the afternoon, as Jasprit Bumrah produced a direct hit from more than 60 yards away to dismiss Hales. The departure of Hales brought to the crease Joe Root, but Roy was unstoppable. The pitch had been well prepared and was perfect for batting. However, for the side batting first, which was England, the quandary was the kind of score that they could feel relatively safe with.
Even the introduction of spin did not curb the South African-born cricketer, who enjoyed batting on what was a batting paradise. Roy self-sabotaged when he was on 73, as he stepped out premeditatedly to Ravindra Jadeja and was stumped by MS Dhoni. Eoin Morgan then joined Root in the middle and India were now managing to string together a few tight overs while the English skipper was getting himself in.
England enjoyed substantial partnerships throughout their innings, but they weren’t allowed to run away with the game. Hardik Pandya, who had been picked as a genuine all-rounder, took one of the two new balls and was easily the standout seamer for India. He picked up the crucial wickets of Morgan and Jos Buttler and conceded just a shade over five runs per over in his nine-over spell.
The course of the Pune ODI changed drastically after Ben Stokes settled in and started striking the ball well. He scored his first 14 runs off 19 balls and England, at the end of the 42nd over, were only 245-5, the kind of position which again tells you the good job the Indian bowlers were doing.
Stokes, though, managed a release shot and with it a maximum in the 43rd over of the innings, which was bowled by Kedar Jadhav, to get himself and the English innings going. From then on until the 48th over, Stokes was irrepressible and had taken every Indian bowler to the cleaners, as he struck five huge sixes and a couple of fours to make a game-changing 40-ball 62.
England, thanks to Stokes’ show and Moeen Ali’s 28 (17), finished at 350-7, with a whopping 105 runs coming off the last eight overs. The Indian frontline pacers (Umesh Yadav and Jasprit Bumrah), in particular, had a forgettable day with the ball and Kohli was a disappointed man. The profusion of England’s total was largely because of the lack of discipline and control of the Indian bowlers.
India had to chase 351 and my thinking at half-time was that the hosts were going to find it difficult because of two reasons: the absence of Rohit Sharma, who, mind you, is a vital cog in the Indian ODI side, at the top of the order, and the fragility of the Indian middle order carrying Yuvraj Singh and MS Dhoni.
In line with my thoughts, India got off to a poor start and lost their openers within the first six overs. India were already in a spot of bother at 24-2 after the first six overs, but then they slumped further, to 63-4 and seemed down and out.
However, what followed was absolutely breathtaking and for a lot of the cricket-watching public, the fact that India went on to win the Pune ODI by three wickets might still be unbelievable.
Kedar Jadhav was an unknown commodity walking in at the fall of Dhoni’s wicket with the score at 63. He had played 12 ODIs for India and batting at Nos. 5 and 6, had done quite well. Here, though, he was in an uncharted territory. He had Virat Kohli, the transcendent chaser, for company and a seemingly lost cause to potentially thrive in.
He got off the mark with an imperious square cut and thereafter, the shots he played were those of a man who knew what he was doing and did not fear the situation he was in. Mind you, India, chasing 351 for victory, were 63-4 in the 12th over. The fact that Jadhav was not expected to do wonders, at the beginning of his innings, probably helped the home boy.
The Virat Kohli-Kedar Jadhav fifth wicket partnership of 200 in Pune will take some bettering, for such was the display of composure, assuredness and a range of strokes few knew about. Jadhav played all round the dial and Kohli was his usual imperious self in playing uppish shots on the on side, in particular.
Once this duo got going, England did not have the answers and such was the nature of the pitch on offer, that the runs were being collected quite easily as well. An ODI which appeared to be going one way, had suddenly become engrossing and mysterious.
Another standout feature of the Kohli-Jadhav partnership was the fluency with which they garnered the runs, ensuring that the required run rate never touched eight runs per over.
Kohli brought up his 27th ODI hundred in the 32nd over of the innings and was primed for another daddy hundred. But an uncharacteristic shot at a time when India had the game under control, brought an end to yet another one of his great ODI knocks.
Jadhav was cramping as he neared his second ODI hundred and India, who were in a great position, had let England back into the game. Hardik Pandya is a great striker of the cricket ball, but lacks the composure which this situation in the Pune ODI demanded. What do India do, was the question.
Jadhav, amid the pain and uneasiness caused by cramps, did not lose his touch and was still timing the ball crisply; in fact, he seemed to be striking the ball better after being affected by cramps. Jadhav was dismissed just 3.3 overs after Kohli was, for a truly magnificent 76-ball 120, but by then, the Maharashtra batsman had put India in an enviable position.
India needed 60 off 61 balls when Jadhav was dismissed, but this was a test of temperament for Hardik and the incoming Ravindra Jadeja. Jadeja did not pass the test and Hardik, by batting India to a victory with a crucial 40 (37), did.
India won the Pune ODI against England with 11 balls to spare, as Ravichandran Ashwin hit a six to take India home. From 63-4, India had done the unthinkable and gone 1-0 up in the Paytm ODI series against England.