Rohit reigns, India clinch series against England

Alex Hales

Alex Hales hit three sixes and four fours in his 41-ball stay

Not for a while, anyway.

Coming fresh from equalising the series 1-1 by winning the second game, England was oozing confidence when they came to bat first.

The real worry for England is that, over the last three years, they have built their limited-overs strategy upon amassing vast scores on surfaces ideal for batting. Even if that requires a total well in excess of 350 in ODI cricket.

India and England will now play a 3-match ODI series beginning at Nottingham on Thursday. There was just time for Rohit to bring up his hundred before Pandya (33no) wrapped up the match and the series with a six over long on. He smashed Willey for a six and two fours in the 18th over to take India to within touching distance of the target.

Eoin Morgan admitted that he would have chased had he won the toss but despite a healthy covering of grass, it soon became clear that there were plenty of runs to be had on this pitch as England made a blistering start.

Indeed, the margin of defeat may flatter England a little.

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India, who had beaten England 2-1 in the Twenty20 worldwide series, had conceded the top ranking to England at the annual update on May 2 but it will get a chance to claim back the spot.

'Take a bow!' - Chris Jordan takes incredible diving catch The ideal run-chase? One of them, by Chris Jordan, was an nearly impossibly good running catch at long-on to end KL Rahul's innings. Pandya had a formality to do and he did well with a six to take India to victory, that too, in style. After 15 overs, India were 152/3. They have a 7-0 win-loss record in three-match bilateral series and have never lost the third match of such a series. Pandya slammed 33 off 14 after booking career best figure of 4/38. "And we didn't hit it".

"I was just chopping and changing trying to find a wicket, trying to be as unpredictable as we could but it didn't work. We watched them do it, after we couldn't, and it emphasises that we need to be better at either putting somebody off their length or hitting length". England are a better, more experienced unit in 50-over cricket. England's first-10-overs run rate of 5.63 is the best among the top teams during this period, while India are in sixth place at 4.92, only above Bangladesh, Pakistan, West Indies and Afghanistan.

Root has been struggling for form in the T20 game, making zero and nine in his previous two innings, but captain Eoin Morgan said he will back for the one-day game at Trent Bridge. England's openers have gone hard at the bowlers from the start, while India have been far more circumspect.

But numerous decisive factors in this series - the variety of India's bowling, the strength of their batting - will apply to 50-over cricket, too.

There is little time for either side to reflect on the series though as attentions now turns to the three-match one-day global series that begins at Trent Bridge on Thursday. The character they showed is something we are really proud of.

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