Jofra Archer led a superb bowling effort as England cruised to an eight-wicket win over India in the first T20 international.
The fast bowler took 3-23 as India were restricted to just 124-7 from their 20 overs as Eoin Morgan’s side produced a fantastically disciplined performance with the ball and in the field, with Shreyas Iyer’s 67 from 48 balls the only score of note for the hosts.
A slightly two-paced surface had made life tough for India but Jason Roy (49 from 32) and Jos Buttler (28 from 24) got England off to a quick start and it soon became a matter of when, not if, the tourists would chase down the 125 they needed.
- First T20I scorecard: India vs England
- As it happened
Both openers fell before the end but Dawid Malan and Jonny Bairstow got England over the line with 27 balls to spare, giving the visitors the perfect start to the five-match series.
Having won the toss and chosen to bowl, Eoin Morgan sprung an early surprise as he gave Adil Rashid (1-14) the ball for the first over of the match and the legspinner repaid his captain with the key wicket of Virat Kohli (0) in his second over.
By the time the India captain had slapped his fifth ball to mid-off, Archer had already removed KL Rahul (1), the opener dragging a full, wide delivery onto his stumps and the home side were 3-2.
Mark Wood (1-20) kept the pressure up when he replaced Rashid and was rewarded when a frustrated Shikhar Dhawan (4) missed with a legside hoick and was bowled. Having struggled for wickets in the powerplay for so long in T20 cricket, England suddenly had three in the first five overs.
India vs England
March 14, 2021, 1:00pm
India’s hopes lay Rishabh Pant, who reverse ramped Archer for six, and Iyer but their attempts to gradually rebuild were ended by Ben Stokes (1-25) in the 10th over; the former whipping a full ball on leg straight to Jonny Bairstow at deep backward square.
England continued to rotate their bowlers but if India were waiting for a loose over to help them kickstart their innings, they were to be left disappointed; the bowlers changed but the seamers’ plan to dig the ball into the pitch on a very straight line continued to be executed well.
Iyer showed his class with a number of elegant boundaries on his way to a 36-ball fifty but lost Hardik Pandya just as their 54-run partnership was starting to gain some momentum, Archer claiming his second of the night.
Shardul Thakur followed next ball, hooking a bouncer into the hands of Malan, and there was to be no big finish for India as Chris Jordan (1-27) snared Iyer with a slower-ball bouncer in the final over.
India needed early wickets in the chase and although Roy needed a bit of luck in the second over when a leading edge off Bhuvneshwar Kumar (0-15) looped over the cover fielder, England’s openers were largely untroubled in the powerplay.
The 50 partnership came up with the final ball of the powerplay with a boundary from Buttler, who had smashed Axar Patel (0-24) into the stands in the previous over, while Roy was up and running after launching Yuzvendra Chahal’s first ball over midwicket for six.
Roy went after the India leggie again in the eighth over, a four over midwicket followed by a six battered over deep square leg, but Chahal ended it on a high as he trapped Buttler lbw with a wrong ‘un to break an opening stand of 72.
Roy seemed set for a half-century but fell one short as Washington Sundar (1-18) got him lbw with his first ball, umpire’s call upholding the decision after the opener reviewed.
It was a personal disappointment for Roy to miss out on a fifty after playing so well but he had already his bit for the team cause and when Bairstow (26no from 17) bludgeoned Chahal (1-44) for a pair of sixes in the next over, England were within 20 of victory.
Malan (24no from 20) finished it off for Morgan’s men, clubbing Sundar back over his head for six to put England 1-0 up in the series.
Watch the second T20I between India and England from 2pm, Sunday on Sky Sports Cricket.
Source: Read Full Article