3rd ODI : Sam Curran’s valiant 95 in vain as India win series 2-1

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The 3rd ODI between England and India ended in an outstanding finish. Set to score 330 to win  England lost wickets at regular intervals to slip to 95/4 and then later 168/6 but Sam Curran played an outstanding innings of 95 not out off 83 balls full of dazzling shots . He showed great temperament to produce a high quality innings under pressure and pull England out from a dead situation in the match with no specialist batter left to bat . He crunched 9 fours and 3 hefty sixes and was lucky once when Hardik dropped an easy chance early in his knock . Curran had two good partnerships, first with Adil Rashid (19) and then with tailender Mark Wood (14) whom he shielded admirably to almost win the match .


England started poorly in their chase with Bhuvneswar snapping up Roy (14) clean bowled and 2nd ODI hero Bairstow (1) lbw in a superb opening spell.Stokes (35) was not able to bat with the same flow as in previous game dropped by Hardik early and finally getting out to a full toss hit straight to midwicket’s throat . Buttler (15) was lbw by a cut back from Shardul but both Dawid Malan (50) and Liam Livingston (36) batted sensibly as England were making a recovery . 


However a double blow from Thakur led to two soft dismissals of Malan and Livingston to leave England at 168/6. Moeen(29) after a cameo was caught superbly by Hardik off Bhuvneswar to leave England staring at defeat at 200/7  and then Sam Curranstarted to stamp his authority on the match and played a memorable innings but fell just short in the last hurdle .  


For India , Bhuvneshwar Kumar (3/42) once again showed his class and proved that after recovering from long injury layoffs he has lost none of his skills and penetration levels. Shardul Thakur (4/67) was expensive but picked up crucial wickets albeit with soft dismissals . There were lot of taLos about Hardik Pandya not bowling in ODIs but today he was given big responsibility and bowled well for 9 overs for 48 runs keeping things under control. 

Earlier  batting 1st , the Indian openers put on 103 in 14 overs before Rohit (37) was bowled by Rashid’s googly . Dhawan hit a polished 67 but both Kohli and Rahul were dismissed cheaply for 7 apiece getting out to spinners. 

Rishabh Pant (78) and Hardik Pandya (64) batted superbly in their 99 run stand to first rescue India from 157/4 and put them within striking distance for a 370 score . Pant is going from strength to strength playing vital knocks consistently since his brilliant successes in Australia test series  . He batted with audacity and hit some sensational sixes including a one handed 6 over long off till he got out against  the run of play nicking Stokes to Buttler for a one handed reflex catch .  Hardik looked in ominous touch hitting powerpacked 6s including 3 against Moeen in same over  before falling for a rapid 64.

 Quick loss of wickets at the back end and Krunal Pandya’s (25 off 34balls) inability to take on the bowling today halted India’s progress though Shardul Thakur played a fine cameo of 30 off 21 balls.

A strong comeback from England in final few overs restricted India to 329 allout  with 10 balls to go. Rashid bowled well in first half of the innings but it was Mark Wood (3/34) whose pace made the difference at the back end of India’s innings .

Sam Curran for his fighting knock was the man of the match while Johny Bairstow for scoring 219 in the series was named man of the series .

scores

IND 329/10 (48.2 Ovs) 
Batting
Pant(wk)   78(62)
Dhawan    67(56)
Hardik       64(44)

Bowling
Mark Wood    3/34
Adil Rashid    2/81

ENG 322/9 (50 Ovs) 
Batting
Sam Curran   95(83)
Malan    50(50)
Livingstone   36 (31)
Bowling
Thakur   4/67
Bhuvneshwar    3/42

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