India vs England, 1st T20I at Manchester

Dean Simpson
July 4, 2018

India went on to register a convincing eight-wicket victory over the hosts courtesy KL Rahul's unbeaten 101 off 54 balls. Talk about keeping your powder dry.

But Kuldeep Yadav did the damage with a maiden five-wicket haul at this level before Rahul (101no) made short work of the chase as India prevailed with eight wickets and 10 balls to spare, leaving England to contemplate a reality check following last month's six-game white-ball whitewash of Australia. They should not be surprised. In the two matches against Australia during the winter's Trans-Tasman Tri-Series, England's scores between overs six and sixteen read: 7 for 67 in Hobart and 1 for 53 at the MCG.

Sony Ten 3 and Sony Ten 3 HD will provide live television coverage of the match in India. They also showed more snarl than a team neutered by Sandpapergate. We want to play competitive cricket.

With the series beginning today, let's take a look at 5 players from India who were a part of the limited overs squad last time around but are not there this time. As the tour progresses, watch this space. If they don't, India's spinners could have a field day in this series.

Krunal Pandya is in frame to replace the injured Sundar.

Nine days after his astonishing century here sealed a 5-0 one-day whitewash against Australia, Buttler motored his way to a 29-ball half-century, his seventh score of 50 or more in his last nine global innings. It's where all our plans are going, like 2019, 2020 for the T20s. Alex Hales, after his innings of eight from 18 balls today, looks most vulnerable and swapping him with Stokes would allow Root to go back up to number three.

It could be that England decide to take fewer risks against Kuldeep in the remaining matches to avoid a similar spate of debilitating wickets.

When Kohli held back Kuldeep's final over, England briefly breathed again, with Willey taking 20 off the 17th, bowled by Bhuvneshwar. Only Jos Buttler with 69 off 46 balls seriously troubled the tourists as England finished on 159-8.

But Rahul quickly put paid to hopes England had done enough, coming to the crease after the early loss of Shikhar Dhawan - edging on to Willey.

More surprisingly (or not), a pre-match press conference in Manchester has multiple references to the Indian Premier League, where only recently England had 13 participants - their most-ever. If it felt more like Mumbai than Manchester, at least everyone was a victor.

In the bowling department, Moeen Ali and Adil Rashid have been doing a great job and the two picked 12 wickets apiece in the ODIs against Australia.

MS Dhoni, Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul were also seen spending time in the nets. If so, their spinners could oust Kohli's quest for personal redemption as the story of the summer.

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