Ian Bell (L) celebrates after completing his third ODI century at Dharamsala on Sunday © PTI
Dharamsala: Jan 27, 2013
Ian Bell struck an impressive century to guide England to a consolatory win against India by seven wickets in the fifth and final One-Day International at the HPCA Stadium in Dharamsala on Sunday.
Chasing a modest target of 227 runs to win, England achieved the target in 47.2 overs.
England’s emphatic win at the new cricket stadium will have no consequence on the result of the five-match series, which was sealed by India in the fourth tie, as they took an unassailable lead of 3-1.
Bell cracked one six and 13 boundaries to score 113 from 143 balls. This was Bell’s third century in One-Day cricket.
England began cautiously in pursuit of 227, with openers Alastair Cook and Bell garnering only 16 runs in the first five overs, wherein they were troubled by the swing bowling of Indian seamers Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Shami Ahmed.
But, once set, both Cook and Bell took the attack to the opposition, picking up boundaries at regular intervals to reach 42 without any loss in after 10 overs.
It was Ishant Sharma who provided India the first breakthrough, finding the gap between Cook’s bat and pad in the 12th over. Cook was dismissed for 22, which came from 40 balls and included five boundaries.
England No 3 Kevin Pietersen failed to make a mark as his stay at the crease lasted only 12 balls, and was caught by Ravindra Jadeja at deep midwicket off Shami. England were 64 for two in the 19th over.
After Pietersen’s dismissal, the young Joe Root teamed up with Bell to take England forward, and added 79 runs for the third wicket. Both Bell and Root kept rotating the strike to keep the pressure off the English side.
Root batted patiently for his 31, which included four boundaries, before being cleaned up by Jadeja.
Eoin Morgan, who looked out of sorts towards the start of his innings, picked up later as he swatted three sixes to reach an unbeaten 40 off as many balls.
Earlier in the day, Suresh Raina scored a fluent 83 to lift India to a respectable total of 226 all-out in 49.4 overs, after the hosts suffered a batting collapse early on.
It was due to a 78-run stand between Raina and Ravindra Jadeja that strengthened India after early blows. The two left-handers kept the England bowlers at bay and batted cautiously during their partnership which lasted for more than 17 overs.
Jadeja faced 65 balls for his 39, hitting two sixes and a boundary before falling to Tredwell on the fourth delivery of the 39th over.
Raina’s knock of 83, which was the backbone of Indian innings, came from 98 balls, studded with eight boundaries and two sixes.
The in-form Indian all-rounder slammed his fourth half-century in the five-match series, also bringing up 4,000 runs in ODI cricket.
For England, Bresnan was the most impressive bowler with the figures of 9.4-1-45-4, while Finn and Tredwell bagged two wickets each.
Brief Scores: India 226 all-out in 49.4 overs (Suresh Raina 83, Ravindra Jadeja 39, Bhuvneshwar Kumar 31; Tim Bresnan 4 for 45, James Tredwell 2 for 25) lost to England 227 for 3 in 47.2 overs (Ian Bell 113*, Eoin Morgan 40*, Joe Root 31; Ravindra Jadeja 1 for 26) by 7 wickets.
Man of the Match: Ian Bell
Man of the Series: Suresh Raina