Rain curtails first England-India one-day international
|First one-day international, Chester-le-Street:|
|India 274-7 (50 overs) v England 27-2 (7.2 overs) - no result|
Rain prevented a result in the first of England's five one-day internationals against India, at Chester-le-Street.
Set 275 to win, England were 27-2 after 7.2 overs when the game was called off.
Parthiv Patel, who was dropped on seven by Ben Stokes, top scored with 95 in India's 274-7 before becoming James Anderson's 200th ODI wicket.
Suresh Raina hit the only two sixes of the Indian innings in his 38, before being caught off Jade Dernbach's well-disguised slower-ball bouncer.
The short ball was used in abundance by England and not always to good effect on a docile pitch that they asked India to bat first on.
"It was a no-brainer to bowl first although the pitch played pretty well," said captain Alastair Cook after the game.
"I don't think we bowled too short, but when you do bowl short, there is always the risk of going for four, so there's a balance needed."
Ajinkya Rahane pulled Stuart Broad through mid-wicket as India's opening partnership eased past 50, while Patel, in for the injured Sachin Tendulkar, skillfully deflected two Anderson deliveries to the third man boundary as India reached 78-0 after 15 overs.
However, Broad's aggressive approach paid off when Rahane miscued a pull shot to Samit Patel at fine leg and in his next over, he took the prized wicket of Rahul Dravid to leave India 86-2 although the wicket was not without controversy.
On-field umpire Billy Doctrove adjudged that Dravid had not made contact as the ball went through to wicketkeeper Craig Kieswetter but, although the "Hotspot" thermal imaging camera concurred, TV umpire Marais Erasmus said there was a sound and that he could see a deflection - a view later backed up by the "Snickometer" which highlighted a clear noise as the ball passed the bat.
BBC Test Match Special summariser Mark Butcher said: "Hot Spot is not something you can completely rely on.
"It's a bad piece of kit for those fine nicks but Dravid's body language told me he was out because the millisecond the ball passed the bat, he jerked his head to see behind."
And after the game, Parthiv Patel admitted: "I heard a noise."
Dravid's departure brought Virat Kohli to the crease and he and Parthiv Patel milked the England bowling with some ease through the middle overs as they added 103 in 20 overs.
But Patel, who had struck nine of his 12 boundaries on the leg side, eventually fell just five runs short of his maiden one-day century, edging a pitched-up Anderson delivery to Kieswetter.
"It was a crucial game for me," admitted Patel.
"I was pleased with the way I batted and having seen how England bowled in the Test matches, I have worked hard on the short ball.
"We were well placed to win, but that's cricket."
Rohit Sharma lasted only a ball, retiring hurt with a broken finger from a Broad bouncer and even after Kohli fell for 55, India were well-placed at 204-4 heading into the final 10 overs.
But the expected onslaught from Raina and Mahendra Dhoni failed to gather momentum and England restricted India to only 30 runs from the final five overs.
"During that batting powerplay they could have got away from us but Tim Bresnan and Jade Dernbach kept their nerve," added Cook.
Dernbach returned to bamboozle Raina with a slow bouncer that the Indian took a half swipe at before finally swatting to Alastair Cook at short fine leg, Dhoni (33) was caught by Kieswetter while trying to hit Bresnan out of the ground, and Bresnan bowled Ravichandran Ashwin first ball as India closed on 274-7.
England - backed as likely winners of the 2015 World Cup by Michael Vaughan - got off to a terrible start in reply as openers Cook and Kieswetter both fell cheaply to Praveen Kumar before the forecast rain brought a premature conclusion, with no result possible as England had not batted for the minimum 20 overs.
The second match is a day-night game, starting at 1400 BST, at the Rose Bowl in Southampton on Tuesday.