Images: England hold nerves to win T20 vs India
There was no end to India's misery in what has turned out to be an abysmal tour of England as they went down by six wickets in their one off Twenty20 match, paying the price for yet another stunning batting collapse.
Debutant Ajinkya Rahane shone with the bat with a 39-ball 61 but the Indians lost nine wickets in the final eight overs to be restricted to 165 in 19.3 overs. The visitors rode on Eoin Morgan's quickfire 49 to chase down the target in 19.3 overs.
Morgan, who struck 49 off 27 balls, was the hero of England's chase, striking seven fours and a six while Ravi Bopara chipped in with a useful 31 to ensure that the hosts maintained their dominance over the hapless visitors.
Morgan put on 73 runs for the fourth wicket with Bopara off only 49 balls to lead England to a comprehensive victory despite Rahane's 61 off 39 balls.
Jade Dernbach (four for 22) and captain Stuart Broad (two for 37) helped the hosts with a flurry of wickets as the visitors scored only 61 runs, losing nine wickets in the final eight overs.
Image: Samit Patel celebrates after winning the Twenty20 against India
Photographs: Getty Imges
Praveen provides the breakthrough for India
Thirty-three of these runs were scored by Suresh Raina who marked Tim Bresnan and Broad for special attention, smashing them for three sixes, as he took only 19 balls for his cameo.
The hosts, who won the Test series 4-0, gave Indians a lesson in Twenty20 cricket as well, scoring their runs with a mix of defence and attack.
The visitors, in contrast, appeared to play to the gallery and largely got their runs in fours and sixes -- as many as 92 of 165 came off boundaries.
England lost debutant Alex Hales (0) to Praveen Kumar off only the second ball of the innings but the experienced Kevin Pietersen gave impetus to the innings with a stroke-filled 33 off 23 balls with five fours.
Image: Samit Patel of England breaks his bat during the NatWest International Twenty20 Match between England and India
Pietersen provides the impetuous
Pietersen and opener Craig Kieswetter (18) guided England to 54 for one in the power-play but then the hosts lost both of them in the space of three runs to bring the match back on an even keel.
Kieswetter offered a simple catch at short cover and Pietersen was stumped off the first ball by Virat Kohli.
Morgan then seized back the initiative with 17 runs off Rohit Sharma in the ninth over of the innings, slamming the part-time off-spinner for two fours and a massive six over mid-on.
England were 90 for three at the end of the 10th over. They took two balls more than India did for their 100 runs 68 balls to India's 66 balls.
Image: Kevin Pietersen hits a boundary
Morgan plays a crucial knock
Morgan played a sensible knock but departed unhappily as he believed Rohit Sharma at point hadn't caught him cleanly off Munaf Patel.
But after Morgan departed at 134 for four in the 16th over, the hosts needed just 32 off 29 balls.
Bopara and Samit Patel (25) then ran briskly between the wickets and hit the odd boundaries to bring the equation to 13 from the final two overs.
Munaf Patel bowled the penultimate over, a brilliant effort as he conceded only three runs from the over.
Needing 10 off the final over, bowled by Vinay Kumar, the first delivery was a wide and the next three were hit for fours by Patel as England reached home with three balls to spare.
Image: Eoin Morgan plays a sweep shot as MS Dhoni was looks on
Rahane impressive on debut
Earlier, the young Rahane announced himself onto international stage in blazing style and Raina exacted his revenge.
The Mumbai opener had the packed stands in raptures as he produced almost every stroke in the book to rattle up 61 off 39 balls with eight fours in his maiden innings in international cricket.
Brought in as replacement of Virender Sehwag earlier this week, Rahane gave India a quick start of 39 from four-odd overs with Parthiv Patel (10) and reached his half century off only 29 balls with as many as eight fours.
England's pace trio of Bresnan, Jade Dernbach and captain Broad tried to intimidate the young right-hander with short-pitched deliveries but nearly every such attempt was met with a ferocious pull or hook by the right-hander.
Patel got the innings going with a good-looking backfoot drive into covers off Bresnan but thereafter Rahane took over and hit boundaries at will.
Image: Ajinkya Rahane in action during the Twenty20 match
India lost four wickets for 17 runs
India lost Patel in the fifth over when the left-hander played too early at a slower Dernbach delivery and lofted a catch to mid-on.
Rahul Dravid walked into play his maiden and possibly only Twenty20 innings and surprised everyone by hitting three successive sixes off left-arm spin of Samit Patel.
Dravid (31 off 21 balls) left in the 12th over but the innings was already past the 100-run mark. The veteran batsman hit the part-time medium-pace of Ravi Bopara straight into the hands of short extra cover.
The innings went into a tailspin at this stage and India lost four wickets for the addition of only 17 runs.
After Dravid was dismissed, Broad took two wickets off successive balls both Rahane and Virat Kohli (4) falling for aggressive strokes.
Image: Jade Dernbach runs out Ravichandran Ashwin