Nottingham: India’s spinners again proved England’s undoing as the tourists won the third one-day international at Trent Bridge on Saturday by six wickets to take a 2-0 lead in the five-match series. World champions India, chasing a modest 228 for victory, cruised to 228 for four with seven overs to spare. Ambati Rayudu, only playing because of Rohit Sharma’s tour-ending finger injury, was an ODI-best 64 not out.
Together with Suresh Raina, who followed up his 100 in India’s equally dominant 133-run victory in Cardiff on Wednesday with a run-a-ball 42, Rayudu put on 87 for the fourth wicket. But it was the first innings that decided the course of the match, with England dismissed for a meagre 227 after losing the toss. They were 82 without loss thanks to under-fire captain Alastair Cook (44) and Alex Hales (42).
But England, as happened in Cardiff, again succumbed to spin as they lost three wickets for 15 runs in six overs to be 97 for three. Off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin, thr man-of-the-match, took three for 39, with only Jos Buttler (42), apart from Cook and Hales, passing 40 in the innings.
England managed just one four in 26 overs midway through their innings and didn’t hit a six until the last over. Cook and Hales posted their second fifty partnership, off 64 balls, in as many matches. But their stand ended when Hales, on his Nottinghamshire home ground, top-edged a sweep off spin-bowling all-rounder Raina’s sixth ball and was caught by India captain and wicketkeeper Mahendra Singh Dhoni.
It was the second time in as many matches that Hales, who made 40 on ODI debut in Cardiff, had fallen to the sweep shot.