All the hullabaloo of England batsmen against Indian spinners came to a grinding halt at Manchester in the first of three T20Is on Tuesday as India reigned over the hosts with a dominant display.
Bamboozled by Kuldeep Yadav, England‘s famed batting line-up, save Jos Buttler, crumbled in the middle overs. With 160 to chase, KL Rahul slammed his second T20I ton to take India home with eight wickets to spare.
Here, we rate the players from either side on a scale of 1-10.
KL Rahul — 10/10
In and out of the side and pushed around the batting line-up, KL Rahul sent a strong message to selectors with a superb hundred from No 3 spot. He began with a nonchalant six over cover off Chris Jordan and treated every England bowler with disdain. Perhaps his best over was the eleventh of the chase, bowled by Liam Plunkett. Rahul plundered him for two fours and two sixes, and despite slowing towards the end, reached his ton with ease.
Kuldeep Yadav — 10/10
Kuldeep Yadav began with a splendid spell against Ireland last week and carried that form into England. His three-wicket over, where he dismissed Eoin Morgan, Jonny Bairstow and Joe Root in a space of four balls, capsized the English boat. He finished with career-best figures of 5/24 to begin his English adventure on a high.
Jos Buttler — 10/10
Blame all you want England‘s batting at Manchester, but Jos Buttler continued his freakish run of form with his seventh half-century in eight T20 innings. With Jasprit Bumrah absent, India’s opening bowlers were taken to the cleaners as Buttler raced to 23 in 12 balls in the powerplay. He was more authoritative against Chahal but failed to get hold of Kuldeep, eventually falling to the Chinaman for 69.
Umesh Yadav — 9/10
Umesh Yadav‘s six-year hiatus from international T20s ended in Ireland last week, and the right-arm pacer once again hit the jackpot, sending back a rampant Jason Roy inside the first six overs. He finished with two brilliant overs to end with figures of 2/21 from his four overs.
Jason Roy — 8/10
India‘s authority in T20s has stemmed mostly from the manner in which they start their innings with the ball. Bhuvneshwar Kumar has been pivotal to this but England opener, Jason Roy, took him on and plundered 19 from his first two overs. Roy raced to 30 by the fifth over but Umesh Yadav had the better of him with a pacy, back-of-length delivery.
Rohit Sharma — 7/10
All Rohit Sharma had to do was play second fiddle to a rampaging KL Rahul and this he did that to perfection. The Mumbai batsman was in his elements but played to the situation, rotating strike and giving maximum strike to Rahul. He eventually fell to the leg-spin of Adil Rashid for a well-made 32 in 30 balls.
Adil Rashid — 7/10
Even with Rahul taking on England bowlers, Adil Rashid, their best T20 bowler for some years, generated enough from the surface to keep India guessing. While chasing down the target was never in question, Rashid prolonged the inevitable by bowling to his strengths. With a bigger total on board, Rashid could test the Indians.
Chris Jordan — 6/10
Like Rashid, Jordan was decisive in delaying India‘s win. His first two overs went for 19 but the seamer returned to bowl two handy overs later in the innings, conceding just eight more runs. He nearly had Rahul in his final over, and if he maintains his rhythm, Jordan could play a major role in England‘s death bowling this series.
David Willey — 6/10
With England‘s middle-order cleaned up by Kuldeep Yadav, the hosts were stuck at 117/6 and needed a late impetus to get them to a respectable total. This came from David Willey who has time and again opened the innings in T20s. The left-hander slammed 29 from 15 balls, including two fours and a six off Bhuvneshwar in one over. He later returned to bowl a decent four-over spell, accounting for the early wicket of Shikhar Dhawan.
Hardik Pandya — 5/10
With Bhuvneshwar Kumar being targeted, Virat Kohli would almost certainly have run out of options had Hardik Pandya not shored up things with his short-of-length bowling and tricky change of pace. He had Alex Hales in all sorts of trouble in one over where he bowled four dots on the trot. Pandya added Moeen Ali‘s wicket later in the innings but conceded more than what he would have liked in his final two overs.
Virat Kohli — 5/10
The Indian skipper needs to be lauded for his decision to send KL Rahul ahead of him. He was happy to play the supporting role and ensured that Rohit Sharma‘s wicket would not tilt the balance in England‘s favour, although that seemed unlikely. A strike-rate of less than 100 from Kohli is a rarity in this format, but he played to the situation and ensured India were over the line easily.
Yuzvendra Chahal — 3/10
Chahal was brought on in the Powerplays to exploit Jason Roy‘s weakness against leg-spin. Instead, he ended up giving 16 runs in the over, including two fours — one apiece from Buttler and Roy — and a six from the England keeper. To his credit, Chahal returned with a lot more venom and gave just 18 runs in his remaining three overs. He couldn‘t get a wicket though.
Liam Plunkett — 2/10
Losing his lengths, Liam Plunkett proved to be fodder for KL Rahul as the Indian No 3 took the England bowler for five fours and two sixes across his four-over spell. Rahul was merciless on Plunkett and the bowler lost his rhythm in the process. He somehow mitigated his figures with a four-run final over.
Bhuvneshwar Kumar — 2/10
Much like Liam Plunkett, Bhuvneshwar Kumar lost his line and length and kept dishing out poor balls. He was either too short or too full and mostly bowled to the pads helping batsmen take him on. With Bumrah not present, Bhuvneshwar seemed a tad confused about his role and ended up giving 45 in his four wicketless overs.
Alex Hales — 1/10
Completely out of sync, Alex Hales undid all the hardwork Jos Buttler and Jason Roy had done in the opening few overs. He seemed out of touch against pace and spin and consumed 18 vital balls for just eight runs. He was cleaned up by Kuldeep Yadav, beginning a slide that saw England lose five wickets for 22 runs.
Eoin Morgan — 1/10
Usually a fine player of spin, Morgan found the going tough against Kuldeep Yadav. He took out his escape shot, the slog sweep, to even up matters but ended up mistiming it to deep mid-wicket. The skipper also seemed to have run out of ideas as Rahul went on the offensive early on.
Jonny Bairstow — 1/10
Batting down the order does not seem to be Bairstow‘s forte in this format of the game. He was clueless as he plonked his front foot outside the crease to defend Kuldeep. He failed to read the googly and Dhoni completed a fine stumping. England might want to ponder pushing Bairstow to number three with Hales being replaced.
Joe Root — 1/10
Joe Root has had a few questions asked of him in recent times but none of them even comes close to Kuldeep Yadav‘s googly, served first -up on Tuesday. Batting way below his usual position, Root seemed blindfolded as he moved out of his crease, much like Bairstow a ball ago, against Kuldeep. It was another googly from the Chinaman and Root ended up being way outside the crease to beat Dhoni’s fast hands.
Moeen Ali — 1/10
With his team in crisis, Moeen Ali did little to salvage matters as he fell to Hardik Pandya, heaving wildly against a back-of-length delivery. His tendency to not play to the situation came under focus yet again with his poor shot selection. The off-spinning all-rounder returned with the ball to watch Rahul make merry off him. He leaked 37 off the 14 balls he bowled, making Morgan‘s job a lot more harder.
Shikhar Dhawan — 1/10
While his recent T20 form has been laudable, Dhawan failed to account for the difference in quality of the bowlers on display. David Willey is a dangerous exponent of the new ball but Dhawan, almost oblivious to the fact, went for an expansive drive in the first over to be bowled off an inside egde.
*MS Dhoni and Suresh Raina weren‘t rated as they had little role in the match
Rating chart: 10-9: Excellent, 8-7: Good, 6-5: Average, 4-3: Poor, 2-1: Very poor
Updated Date: Jul 04, 2018 10:24 AM