Spinners, Rayudu Outclass England Again
India 228-4 (Rayudu 64no) beat
England 227 (Cook 44) by six wickets
Third One-Day International, Trent Bridge
India's spinners wrecked a good start by England's batsmen and Ambati Rayudu scored an unbeaten half-century to seal a six-wicket win in the third One-Day International at Trent Bridge.
After winning the toss, England made a good start and were 82 without loss before they lost their way against slow bowling and were bowled out for 227.
Rayudu, unbeaten on 64 in 78 balls, then marshalled India's run chase and they eased to their target with seven overs to spare go 2-0 up in the five-match series.
That puts them back on top of the ODI rankings and gives them an unassailable lead in the series.
Going into the match on the back of a comprehensive 133-run win in the second match in Cardiff, they were forced to make one change with Rayudu coming for the injured Rohit Sharma and Ajinkya Rahane moving up the order.
England responded by dropping the wayward Chris Jordan and giving Steven Finn his first chance since he left the winter tour of Australia.
Indeed, Finn's return to the side was one of few positives for England, who subsided dramatically after openers Alastair Cook (44) and Alex Hales (42) had given them a decent platform.
Both negotiated some early swing and were quick to punish the seamers as they erred in line and length - a straight drive from Hales perhaps his best shot and Cook pulled powerfully on a couple of occasions.
However, once MS Dhoni summoned his spinners, the game changed completely. Hales was the first to when he top-edged a sweep and was caught by Dhoni off Raina and soon after Cook went, stumped by Rayudu who fired one past him down the leg-side.
Ambati Rayudu the bowler...
Alastair Cook became Ambati Rayudu's first ODI wicket when he was stumped by MS Dhoni. The off-spinner has previously dismissed Yuvraj Singh, Subramaniam Badrinath and Vaughn van Jaarsveld in one-day matches and has now bowled just nine overs in ODI cricket.
Cook becomes his first stumping victim, however, and following this performance, the man from Guntur, Andhra Pradesh, can look forward to the rest of the series.
And given how England continue to struggle against spin - whether they be specialists Ashwin and Jadeja, or part-timers like Rayudu and Raina, don't bet against Dhoni throwing him the ball again.
India's spin bowlers would go on to pick up six for 122 in their 30 overs as England were bowled out from the final ball of the innings.
Ravichandran Ashwin returned three for 39, taking the wickets of Eoin Morgan (10), Jos Buttler (42) and Ben Stokes (2). Morgan was caught behind by Dhoni, Buttler bowled as he charged down the track and Stokes brilliantly caught one-handed by Raina at slip.
Those wickets all fell after Joe Root was stumped off Jadeja for two and Ian Bell had been run out by a Mohit Sharma direct hit from the deep for 28.
England's desperation was perhaps best illustrated by the fact that they failed to score a single boundary between the 18th and 44th over and their only six came from James Tredwell, who cracked a merry 30 in 18 balls at the death.
Chris Woakes also made 15 as he and Buttler tried to revive the innings but in the end, all they had managed to do was ensure England wouldn't be bowled out before the 50 overs were completed.
Bowling India out was the most likely way for England to get back in the series, but they seemed intent instead on containment, holding back Finn at the start and then bowling Root as India looked well set.
They did take wickets, but not quickly enough to hamper India, who emphasised the clear gulf between the two sides with a dominant display.
Shikhar Dhawan (16) was the only batsman to fail, driving Woakes to Morgan before Rahane and Virat Kohli added 50 for the second wicket.
Rahane hit 45 in 56 balls with six fours and a six while Kohli (40) finally found some form and looked good before flicking Stokes to Tredwell at mid-in.
Rayudu and Raina then came together and almost took India home from 120 for three, Raina following up his outstanding century in Cardiff with 42 in as many balls until he found Woakes in the deep off Tredwell and became the sixth batsmen to be dismissed in the 40s on the day.
Rayudu would not be denied, however, and having completed his third ODI half-century, he went on to finish on 64 - a new career best with Jadeja unbeaten alongside him on 12 in nine balls at the other end.
The fourth match is at Edgbaston on Tuesday (2nd September).
© Cricket World 2014
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