INDvENG, 2nd T20: India hold nerves to level series at Nagpur

Virat Kohli

India’s bowlers hold their nerves in the death overs to secure a crunching 5-run win over the visitors in the INDvENG, 2nd T20 match at Nagpur to level the series at 1-all, with the final match remaining which will be played in Bengaluru on Wednesday.

India’s Jasprit Bumrah was assigned the task to bowl the final over of the innings with England needing just 8 runs from the last 6 balls to take the series. But Bumrah had other plans as he conceded just two runs and claimed two scalps in the final over to see his side home and level the series.

Jos Butler seemed to have dictated the result as he struck the last 3 balls of the penultimate over for 12 runs but both he and Root were dismissed by Bumrah as he snatched victory from the jaws of defeat with his magical final over.

England’s skipper Eoin Morgan decided to field first after winning the toss in Nagpur on a surface which he described as “a really Indian wicket”, England included Liam Dawson in place of Liam Plunkett to give themselves a third spin option and strengthen their spin department. A clear change in plans after Adil Rashid, the specialist spinner in the side, was not required to bowl in the first T20.

England’s bowlers once again did the job for them as they restricted India for just 144, with KL Rahul scoring 71 from just 47 balls and Manish Pandey contributing with his 30 runs.

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Chris Jordan was the pick of the bowlers for England as he took 3 for 22, Moeen Ali was once again at his restrictive best, claimed figures of 1 for 20 in his four overs without conceding a single boundary.

On a slow surface, England batsmen – particularly Eoin Morgan and Joe Root – struggled to add fluency to their chase as they found run-scoring hard work on a sluggish surface. In the end, it was all down to Moeen Ali to hit the six off the last ball to seal a win but it didn’t happen as he failed to make any connection.

The series is level at 1-all and both teams have everything to play for going into the third and final T20 match on Wednesday in Bengaluru.

“It’s important to have belief. It was a case of us executing really well initially. Bumrah and Nehra were outstanding in the end. To defend 40 in five overs with dew present is outstanding.” Virat Kohli said.

“It’s like my second home, can’t wait to go there (Bengaluru). All to play for in the last game. We’ll try to be more expressive. Some things we need to tighten up but all in all a very good performance.”

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INDvENG, 2nd T20 Result:

India 144 for 8 (Rahul 71, Jordan 3-22) beat England 139 for 6 (Stokes 38, Nehra 3-28) by five runs

INDvENG, 2nd T20 Line Ups:

India: 1 Virat Kohli (capt), 2 KL Rahul, 3 Suresh Raina, 4 Yuvraj Singh, 5, MS Dhoni (wk), 6 Manish Pandey, 7 Hardik Pandya, 8 Amit Mishra, 9 Yuzvendra Chahal, 10 Ashish Nehra, 11 Jasprit Bumrah

England: 1 Sam Billings, 2 Jason Roy, 3 Joe Root, 4 Eoin Morgan (capt), 5 Ben Stokes, 6 Jos Buttler, 7 Moeen Ali, 8 Liam Dawson, 9 Chris Jordan, 10 Adil Rashid, 11 Tymal Mills

Features PC: Cricket Today Magazine/Flickr