Suresh Raina hit his fourth consecutive half-century against England to help India post a modest total of 226 runs. That has given the Indian bowlers something to bowl at. However, Indian batting faltered once again and were bowled out for 226 runs with two balls left. The low total gives England a good chance to win the match.
England won a very important toss and asked India to bat first. The England fast bowlers exploited the condition to perfection and reduced India to 13/2 first and then 24/3. With the fall of Gambhir’s wicket, India were in deeper trouble at 49/4.And as if that wasn’t enough, India even lost the wicket of M S Dhoni and were looking miserable at 79/5.
However, it was Suresh Raina who once again came in with a timely knock to see India out of the difficult situations. Like his previous other innings, Raina took his time to settle down. He played many dot balls and punished only the loose balls. He reached his 50 with thehelp of 5 fours and a couple of sixes. He looked set for a century, but soon after Powerplay, got out in trying to hit the ball over the inner circle.
India had already lost Ravindra Jadeja. He too had played an important inning with Raina scoring 39 off 65 balls with a four and two sixes. That then exposed the tail. But R Ashwin and Bhuvaneshwar Kumar had some other thoughts. Both took some risks and hit the ball in the air. The risk paid off and India got some important runs on the board.
The bowlers have batted excellently to push the total past 200 runs. That should give a boost to India when fielding. A lot depends on their approach now. Kohli and Yuvraj can make up for the lost batting opportunities in the field now. If they field the way they did against Pakistan, they have all the chance to win this match too.
PREVIOUSLY PUBLISHED IN JANUARY 2013