The ODI series moved on to the Home of Cricket, could England find their mojo and even up the series? A man who’d been out of sorts would make sure they did. To put the ‘moaning’ about Joe Root into perspective, in the 7 ODI’s he’d played in before this one, he scored 136 runs with a top score of 50. In the 3 T20’s he made 44, a round total of 180 in 10 innings, those saying he was out of form weren’t wrong in any way, his mojo was missing.
Jason Roy and Jonny Bairstow again started well, making 69 before Bairstow was bowled by Kuldeep for 38, his is a name that will haunt England players by the end of the summer I suspect. In came Root, England’s test captain, he’d scored only 12 runs in the 3 games he’d featured in against India, losing his wicket to Kuldeep twice and Chahal once.
However at Lord’s the Joe Root who is seen to be England’s best batsman showed his class and found his form in a big way, anyone coming to the game fresh would have had no concept that he’d struggled so badly against the India spinners.
Eoin Morgan joined Root and the pair had a good partnership putting on 103 runs before Morgan was caught on the second time of asking by Dhawan feom the bowling of Kuldeep, he’d made 53 from 51 balls.
England’s two big hitters were in next, Ben Stokes made only and Jos Buttler 4, both being caught by MS Dhoni. Moeen Ali played a short cameo making 13 runs before being caught by Rohit from the bowling of Chahal.
David Willey came to the wicket, he has been known to open for Yorkshire in white ball cricket and wow his arrival came with a bang! he scored 50 in 44 minutes and 31 balls. In the meantime his Yorkshire team mate Joe Root had passed his century. The pair went for a quick run on the final ball of the innings and it seemed Root was run out, but that has since been over turned as the pair hadn’t crossed. Willey was out for 50, Root finished on 113 Not Out and England on 322 for 7.
The India innings was a little strange, their man in form Rohit went first, bowled by Chris Wood for 15. Virat Kohli came in at 3, comparisons are often made between Kohli and Root, in the 4 games played by the 2 countries Kohli had made 185 with a top score of 75, so, run-in every game but no really big score.
Shikhar Dhawan hadn’t really fired either and he was next out, caught by Ben Stokes from the bowling of Willey, like Kohli he looks as much like a film star as a cricketer and is exciting to watch with bat in hand. But 36 from 30 balls was his lot at Lord’s.
RL Kahul wafted at his second ball from Liam Plunkett and was caught by Buttler for a Duck India were 60 for 3.
Suresh Raina was the next man in, he’s not overly rated in white ball cricket by India fans. But he and Kohli batted well together, making 80 runs. Kohli was however trapped LBW by Moeen Ali for 45, Moeen so often comes on and takes a key wicket for England. especially with a white ball.
Kohli was out in the 27th over and India were way off the pace at 140 for 4. MS Dhoni was in next and he played an innings that confused some. While he was batting with Raina, out bowled by Rashid for 46 in the 32nd over and Hardik Pandys we had what is perceived to be normal service from Dhoni. But once Pandya had gone for 21 caught by Buttler from the bowling of Plunkett, it felt as if India and Dhoni knew the match was lost and things slowed right down.
Many in the crowd left the ground and we were left with a strange impasse. Dhoni batted for 80 minutes and made 37 runs. India made it to the final over but were all out for 236 a shortfall of 86 runs.
I wasn’t able to be at the 3rd ODI which England won by 8 wickets after another century from Joe Root. Here’s hoping he takes his form into the Test Series.