England 218-7 (Kieswetter 51, Ashwin 3-40) beat
India 234-7 (Jadeja 78, Dhoni 69) by 3 wickets (D/L)
Third One-Day International, The Oval
Ravi Jadeja scored a half-century and then took two wickets as India ran England close before finally succumbing in the third One-Day International at The Oval.
Jadeja scored 78 out of India's 234 for seven - itself a fine effort having been reduced to 58 for five and after rain interrupted proceedings, England got home with seven balls to spare.
Mahendra Singh Dhoni also added a half-century, scoring 69 for India but although Craig Kieswetter was the only England player to pass 50, a string of contributions ensured that they moved into an unassailable 2-0 series lead with two to play.
It was another good toss for Alastair Cook to win and James Anderson (3-48) exploited early bowler-friendly conditions to have Ajinkya Rahane taken at slip before he had scored by the returning Jonathan Trott, Parthiv Patel bowled for three and Virat Kohli caught by Kieswetter.
The Lancashire man also pounced to take advantage of some poor running from Rahul Dravid to run him out with a direct hit and when Suresh Raina (21) was caught by Kieswetter off Stuart Broad, India were in all sorts of trouble. It had taken them 9.4 overs to find the boundary and a while longer for Raina to launch the first and only six of the innings.
Jadeja and Dhoni, however, then put on 112 for the sixth wicket to stall England's charge and Jadeja's innings was most impressive given this was his first taste of cricket on the tour having been added as a replacement for Gautam Gambhir.
Some his cover driving came straight out of Gambhir's manual for one-day play and he hit ten fours in 89 balls before holing ot late on while Dhoni played in his usual counter-attacking style to make 69 in 103 balls having been forced to weather the storm when he first came in.
Tim Bresnan and Jade Dernbach also picked up a wicket and England then came out all guns blazing with Kieswetter in rich form as he carved his way to a half-century packed with powerful shots, swatting the Indian pace bowlers dismissively through the leg-side, hitting three fours and three sixes.
He was eventually undone by Jadeja, bowled an excellent over which first tied him down and then bowled him out. He had made the lion's share of a 63-run stand with Cook (23) who was trapped in front by Munaf Patel.
Shortly before the rain hit, Trott was bowled as he failed to judge the line of an Ashwin delivery but England left the field ahead of the Duckworth/Lewis method. Despite a delay that cut seven overs from the run chase and reduced their target to 218, there they stayed throughout despite an excellent effort in the field from India.
Ben Stokes hammered one big six in making 20 before he was also bowled by Ashwin, Ian Bell looked fluent during his 23 in 25 balls before he was run out by a piece of magic from Dhoni who reacted quickly and threw down one stump but England were brought close by Ravi Bopara (40) and Tim Bresnan (28).
Bopara made his runs from 41 balls and hit four fours before he became Ashwin's third victim when a gem of a delivery just kissed the leg bail and following the dismissal of Bresnan, bowled by Jadeja, it still left England a few nervy moments.
Graeme Swann, not a man who seems to suffer too much from nerves, sealed the game by hitting nine in five balls, the wining run immediately following a punched four down the ground which finally deflated India.
The fourth game is at Lord's on 11th September.
© Cricket World 2011