It was the third ODI between England and India at Nottingham. India were lifted with sheer self-confidence after the comfortable win in the previous ODI. England went all wrong strategically in the second ODI and their team selection strategies were being criticized by many including former cricketers. Steve Finn’s exclusion from the playing XI and including as many as 4 all-rounders in the second ODI really surprised many. However, they rectified their mistake today and Finn was in the playing XI. India also were unbalanced by Rohit Sharma’s injury and it was quite of a doubtful as who would open the innings for them.
Initially, India won the toss and opted to field first. Bhuvaneshwar Kumar started off the proceedings for India while Captain Cook and Alex Hales opened the innings for England. It was quite sort of a brilliant start for England and also the type of start they wanted. For yet another time, Mohammad Shami did not look much impressive with the ball and the English batsmen did not seem to be under any sorts of bother while facing the two pacers. Both were going pretty well until the spinners were introduced. It was in the 18th over of the innings when Suresh Raina brought the opening breakthrough for India in the form of Alex Hales. Hales edged a ball and it was caught well by skipper, Dhoni and thus England lost their first wicket. Dhoni made an incredible bowling change then. Ambati Rayudu was brought in the attack and guess what he struck for India and he deceived Cook by the flight and Cook stepped out of the crease and was stumped brilliantly by Dhoni. Then was the time for the brilliance of Jadeja–Ashwin duo. They empowered over the English batsmen by their turn and bounce and most of the English batsmen got trapped in the similar manner. Root, Morgan and Ben Stokes gave their wickets away to the spinners. Not only did the spinners take wickets but also they constrained the scoring rate of England. Ashwin gave 39 runs in his 10 overs and took 3 wickets. Jadeja gave 38 runs in his 10 overs and took a single wicket. Buttler was able to put up some fight for the England line up. He scored 42 runs when he was bowled by Ashwin. The job of perfect bowling was completed by Shami and Bhuvaneshwar Kumar at the death overs and England was bundled for 227 runs after 50 overs.
The target did seem to be very much gettable for India. Ajinkya Rahane was promoted up the order for the absence of Rohit Sharma and he opened the innings alongside Shikhar Dhawan. Both managed to put up a brilliant start and England pacers fumbled things initially and did not manage to create any sorts of pressure for the Indian batsmen. It was a display of some below ordinary strategic moves that eased up things for India. Finn was not given to bowl in the initial overs. This decision was indeed strange. Woakes managed to provide England the initial breakthrough in the form of Dhawan in the 8th over but they England never managed to create the pressure. Finn was introduced in the 11th over of the innings and he looked pretty much ordinary today. Rahane and Kohli poised the Indian innings steadily and Kohli looked in perfect touch today. His feet were moving well and he looked confident. Rahane was dismissed by Finn in the 18th over and India were 85 for the loss of 2 wickets. Kohli was dismissed next for 40 runs. He might well have missed his half century but this innings will surely boost his confidence as it was perfect. After Kohli’s dismissal, it was pure domination by Rayudu and Raina. Raina carried on with the good work right from where he left in the second ODI. And Rayudu was having a fantastic day at the field. He played some brilliant strokes and went onto score half century by an upper cut. Raina was dismissed while he tried to slog a ball off Tredwell and was caught in the long on region. He managed to score 42 runs. Then Rayudu and Jadeja took India to a victory.
Rayudu remained unbeaten on 62 runs and he was priceless for India today and he was adjourned as the Man Of the Match and India won the match by 6 wickets. They now lead the series 2-0 and England have no chance of winning the series. It is to be seen whether India be able to carry on with their domination.