January 26, 2022


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England collapsed to lose five wickets for 41 runs after a 135-run opening stand between Jason Roy and Jonny Bairstow
First 14 overs 137 runs, O wickets Rest of the innings – 120 runs, 10 wickets.
You live by the sword, you die by it. The
expression fits the best on the current England white-ball setup. After a blitzring start which brought the required run-rate down to 5.2 runs per over, England did not attempt to take their foot off the paddle despite losing wickets.

“This is the way we play and this is the way we will continue to play”, said Eoin Morgan after night when the England batting line-up were slayed by that same sword. Failing to keep ball on the ground, England collapsed to lose five top-order wicket for 41 runs, ultimately
conceding the ODI series opener by 66 runs.

India, apart from a rare win in a series opener, walks back with a lot of pride. “One of our sweetest victories in the recent past. We haven’t won good games of ODI cricket for a while”, said Virat Kohli. A comeback at the back of the bowlers is special but staging a comeback twice, both on the back of a couple of debutants is even better.

The collapse that could have been ignored.

After 24 runs in the first five overs, Jonny
Bairstow soon turned the tables around by targeting the debutant, Krishna. He struck him for 22 runs in the sixth over of the innings, all by himself. Jason Roy soon joined the party and the duo put on 85 runs in the next eight overs. Having tried all his five bowling options (with
Hardik Pandya not bowling), Kohli went back to Krishna with the hopes of a revival in his second spell. The 25-year old didn’t disappoint this time. On the second ball of his spell, he troubled Roy with bounce, fetching his scalp for Two overs later, he cashed in on the pressure built on Ben Stokes – 1 off 11 balls strike for the second time. Bairstow and Morgan added 32 runs off 35 for the third wicket. It felt like the storm will
settle soon for the visitors except they were still trying too many shots. The asking rate at the start of the 23rd over was 5.3 when Bairstow sliced Shardul Thakur to deep mid-wicket on 94.

In his next over, Thakur struck twice.
Morgan, on the first ball, went for an
adventurous pull shot, top-edging it behind the stumps. Jos Buttler was then adjudged LBW on one of the few dismissals which can be totally
attributed to the brilliance of the bowler.

The chase was thrown into jeopardy even for England’s deep batting line-up. Sam Billings and Moeen Ali kept the hopes alive with a 41 run stand. Krishna, given the ball for his third spell, struck straightaway with Billings playing an aerial drive to short cOver.Bhuvneshwar
Kumar ensured England’s chances are dead and buried with scalps of Moeen Ali and Adil Rashid with two brilliant deliveries. Krishna, quite fittingly, took the last wicket, finishing with a four-wicket haul, becoming the first lndian bowler to do so on ODI debut.