Eoin Morgan steers England to Twenty20 win over India
Last updated on .From the section Cricket
|Twenty20 international, Old Trafford:|
|England 169-4 (19.3 overs) beat India 165 (19.4 overs) by six wickets|
Eoin Morgan starred with the bat as England scraped to a six-wicket Twenty20 victory over India with three balls to spare at Old Trafford.
Morgan smashed 49 off 27 balls as the Twenty20 world champions appeared to be cruising towards their target of 166.
India fought back but Ravi Bopara (31 not out) and Samit Patel (25 not out) saw England home under the lights.
Batting first, India had collapsed from 104-1 to 165 all out, with fast bowler Jade Dernbach taking 4-22.
Opener Ajinkya Rahane top-scored for the tourists with 61 on his international debut.
He starred in a partnership of 65 with veteran Rahul Dravid, whose 31 in his first, and final, Twenty20 international featured three consecutive sixes off Patel.
Their stand looked to be taking India towards an imposing total, but some fine bowling from the impressive Dernbach - including two wickets in the last over - kept Stuart Broad's side in the hunt.
The hosts got off to an inauspicious start when Alex Hales, making his England debut alongside Jos Buttler, was trapped leg-before by Praveen Kumar for a duck off the second ball of the innings.
Kevin Pietersen, rested for the upcoming one-day series, got England going with some characteristic aggression.
He reached 33, either side of Craig Kieswetter's dismissal for 18, before over-stretching to Virat Kohli and offering Mahendra Dhoni the chance to whip the bails off.
Morgan kept up the momentum as he thrashed two fours and a six in successive balls off Rohit Sharma while, at the other end, Bopara hung in there, despite never really finding the middle of the bat until he lofted Ashwin over extra-cover for his first four.
In an innings filled with brilliant pieces of improvisation, Morgan took England to within 32 runs of their target.
But a low catch by Rohit Sharma, confirmed by the fourth umpire, sent Morgan packing and gave India hope.
With four wickets in hand, England remained firm favourites but some clever bowling from Munaf Patel - who only conceded three runs from the penultimate over - left them still needing 10 from the last over.
That become nine when Vinaj Kumar was called for a harsh wide from the first ball.
And Patel, who earlier broke his bat in spectacular fashion, made light work of the runs as he clattered three boundaries in a row to clinch Broad's first win as Twenty20 captain.
The teams will now face each other in a five-match one-day series starting in Durham on Sunday.