Edgbaston: India delivered a comprehensive performance in Edgbaston to beat England by 49 runs to take an unassailable 2-0 lead in the three-match T20I series.
India were going all guns blazing in the Powerplay, with the new opening pair of Rohit Sharma and Rishabh Pant attacking from the very off. The partnership was already up to 49 in 4.4 overs when Richard Gleeson, the England debutant, turned the tide around.
A short ball would first get him the wicket of the Indian skipper for 31. Virat Kohli would then depart for 1, attempting a big shot but only getting a top edge. The very next ball would yield him the wicket of Rishabh Pant for 26, with the wicketkeeper-batter getting an inside-edge straight into the hands of Jos Buttler.
Gleeson would end with figures of 3/15 from his four overs in what was a sensational debut performance.
India would continue to struggle in the middle-overs, losing wickets at regular intervals. Chris Jordan would strike twice, dismissing Suryakumar Yadav and Hardik Pandya in back-to-back deliveries.
Dinesh Karthik too could not last long, getting run-out on 12. The onus was now on Ravindra Jadeja to hold the Indian innings together and get them to a competitive score. And he did exactly that.
The all-rounder would score a brilliant counter-attacking 46* off only 29 deliveries, smashing five boundaries. His effort helped the visitors reach the 170-run mark, giving their bowlers a target to defend.
England needed a good start from their openers to chase down the target. The brilliance of Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Jasprit Bumrah though put India firmly on top in the Powerplay. Bhuvneshwar would dismiss Jason Roy off the very first delivery and then follow it up with the key wicket of Jos Buttler.
Liam Livingstone looked in devastating touch but would be undone by a brilliant off-cutter from Bumrah. England would lose three wickets in the Powerplay and would never quite recover during their chase.
The flurry of wickets would continue after the Powerplay. Harry Brook would be outfoxed by Yuzvendra Chahal, who would then scalp the wicket of Dawid Malan for 19. Bumrah would get his second by dismissing Sam Curran. Chris Jordan (1) and Richard Gleeson (2) and Matt Parkinson (0) could not hang around long at the crease.
For England, the only positive in the batting department would be the cameos from Moeen Ali and David Willey. Moeen timed the ball beautifully, scoring a 21-ball 35, hitting three fours and two sixes. Willey too would put up a determined fight, remaining unbeaten on 33.
But it wasn’t enough, as India would prevail by 49 runs in what turned out to be a comfortable afternoon, taking an unassailable 2-0 lead in the series.