5th ODI: India set target of 227 for England
A swashbuckling knock by Suresh Raina helped India reach a decent total of 226 in the fifth and final cricket ODI against England after an inept batting performance by the top-order batsmen in bowling friendly conditions, in Dharamsala on Sunday.
Image: Suresh Raina celebrates his fifty
Raina helped Indian total gain a semblance of respectability
Put into bat in conditions helpful for seam bowling, India were 79 for five before Raina (83) led a recovery act before the home team folded for 226 in 49.4 overs at the picturesque HPCA Stadium.
Raina, whose knock came off 98 balls, added 78 runs for the sixth wicket with Ravindra Jadeja, to help the Indian total gain a semblance of respectability. Jadeja's contribution was 39 off 65 balls with a boundary and two sixes.
Image: Suresh Raina and Ravindra Jadeja
Yuvraj Singh's scratchy form
En route his fourth successive half-century in the series, the left-hander from UP made a strong case for himself being promoted up the order ahead of Yuvraj Singh, whose form has been scratchy of late.
Raina, who was dropped twice on individual scores of 5 and 61, hit eight boundaries and two huge sixes.
He, incidentally, also completed 4000 ODI runs in his 159th ODI appearance.
Image: Yuvraj Singh
Bresnan was the pick of bowlers
Tim Bresnan was the pick of bowlers with figures of four for 45 while their premier fast bowler Steven Finn was miserly giving away 28 runs in 10 overs getting a couple of wickets in the process.
Image: England celebrate the wicket of Rohit Sharma
Sharma, Kohli got out in identical fashion
For India, the slide started in the fourth over when Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli got out in an identical fashion off successive deliveries from Bresnan. Bresnan bowled two fuller deliveries with a hint of away movement.
Both Sharma and Kohli went for cover drives without getting to the pitch of the deliveries and resultant thick edges flew to James Tredwell at second slip on both occasions.
Image: Virat Kohli
Gambhir fails to shine
The stage was set for Gautam Gambhir to make amends for his poor show in recent times and he did start off well with a boundary off Steven Finn.
During his 42-ball stay at the crease, he displayed two extremes. He looked ill at ease and circumspect whenever the lanky Finn banged it short but played two majestic shots off Bresnan.
The senior opener should have carried on but on 24 he failed to dispatch a rank long hop from Tredwell. It was short and Gambhir played the square cut which lobbed to Ian Bell at point.
Image: Gautam Gambhir