Chahal turns it India's way

Cricket Third T20I : Leg-spinner claims 6 for 25 as Kohli's men complete their English conquest

Chahal turns it India's way

High-flying Indians added the icing on the cake, completing a long and successful series against England by downing the visitors in emphatic fashion in the third and final T20I for a brilliant treble here on Wednesday.

Having swept the Test series 4-0 and ODIs 2-1 in heart-stopping fashion, the Indians humbled the visitors by 75 runs in the concluding fixture of the marathon journey to lay their hands on the T20 trophy as well in front of a raucous M Chinnaswamy Stadium crowd.

After losing skipper Virat Kohli in the seventh ball of the innings, the Indians staged a brilliant recovery through half-centuries from Suresh Raina (63, 45b, 2x4, 5x6) and Mahendra Singh Dhoni (56, 36b, 5x4, 2x6) to post a formidable 202/6.

Royal Challengers Bangalore’s Yuzvendra Chahal then emerged as the unlikely hero of the match, scalping 6/25, including a match-turning spell of 2-0-6-5, to power India to a first bilateral T20I series win over England. The visitors, who looked very much in the contest before suffering a monumental slide, folded up for 127 in 16.3 overs. 

While the loss may seem huge in the end, England actually looked like overpowering India at the half-way stage of their innings. The ever-dependable Joe Root and Eoin Morgan, mixing caution with aggression, seemed to be motoring along well despite facing a herculean task.

Things changed on its head in the 14th over when Morgan (40, 21b, 2x4, 3x6) perished to Chahal, the skipper holing out to Rishab Pant in the deep. Chahal then trapped the well-set Root (42, 37b, 4x4, 2x6) off the very next ball to bring India right back into the game.

Thereafter, England just lost their composure in stunning fashion as their last eight wickets tumbled for eight runs in a space of 19 balls.

Earlier, India appeared to be in a spot when they lost Kohli early on much to the disappointment of his beloved Bengaluru crowd. After missing an attempted flick off Chris Jordan in the first ball of the second over, the skipper set off for a non-existent quick single as the ball fell just yards from the pitch. K L Rahul rightfully sent back Kohli but the Delhiite was far too down the track and Jordan rushed and knocked the stumps off with an underarm throw.

However, Rahul and Raina went about rebuilding the innings in contrasting fashions. While Rahul took some measured risks, Raina chose to walk the dangerous path but came out unscathed in a version that he loves a lot. Either giving himself room on the off-side to loft the ball over covers or exposing his stumps to play the pull, Raina kept alternating between these two ploys to punish England.

Rahul perished against the run of play but with Dhoni teeing off from the very onset, the Indian innings kept motoring along  smoothly. Both Raina and Dhoni kept finding the boundaries at regular intervals as the English bowlers struggled to stem the run flow.

And when Raina departed, the incoming Yuvraj Singh played a superb cameo. Taking a special liking to Jordan, who he carted for three sixes and one boundary in the 18th over, Yuvraj struck a lightning quick 10-ball 27. Dhoni, playing some outrageous shots, then stayed till the end to ensure India got past the psychological 200-run mark.

score board

Kohli (run out)    2
Rahul b Stokes    22
(18b, 2x4, 1x6)
Raina c Morgan b Plunkett    63
(45b, 2x4, 5x6)
Dhoni c Rashid b Jordan    56
(36b, 5x4, 2x6)
Yuvraj c Buttler b Mills    27
(10b, 1x4, 3x6)
Pant (not out)    5
(3b, 1x4)
Pandya (run out)     11
(4b, 1x6)
Extras (B-4, LB-4, W-8)    16
Total (for 6 wkts, 20 overs)    202
Fall of wickets: 1-4 (Kohli), 2-65 (Rahul), 3-120 (Raina), 4-177 (Yuvraj), 5-191 (Dhoni), 6-202 (Pandya).
Bowling: Mills 4-0-31-1 (w-4), Jordan 4-0-56-1 (w-2), Plunkett 2-0-22-1, Stokes 4-0-32-1 (w-2), Ali 4-0-30-0, Rashid 2-0-23-0.
Roy c Dhoni b Mishra    32
(23b, 4x4, 1x6)
Billings c Raina b Chahal    0
Root lbw Chahal    42
(37b, 4x4, 2x6)
Morgan c Pant b Chahal    40
(21b, 2x4, 3x6)
Buttler c Kohli b Bumrah    0
Stokes c Raina b Chahal    6
(7b, 1x4)
Ali c Kohli b Chahal    2
Plunkett b Bumrah    0
Jordan st Dhoni b Chahal    0
Rashid (not out)    0
Mills c Kohli b Bumrah    0
Extras (W-3, LB-2)    5

Total (all out, 16.3 overs)    127

Fall of wickets: 1-8 (Billings), 2-55 (Roy), 3-119 (Morgan), 4-119 (Root), 5-119 (Buttler), 6-123 (Ali), 7-127 (Sto­kes), 8-127 (Jordan), 9-127 (Plunkett). Bowling: Nehra 3-1-24-0 (w-1), Chahal 4-0-25-6, Bumrah 2.3-0-14-3, Mishra 4-0-23-1 (w-1), Pandya 2-0-17-0, Raina 1-0-22-0 (w-1).

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