It was another good day for top form batsman and captain Alastair Cook yesterday as he made an unbeaten 80, leading England to a seven wicket win over India in the second one day international of the five match series.
The 1-0 lead takes into account the fact that the opening match had to be abandoned, and the second, at Southampton’s Rose Bowl, was reduced to 23 overs per side.
Early excitement was provided as the tourists opened the batting, and diminutive left-hander Parthiv Patel made two sixes in the third over before falling to a ball from James Anderson.
Rahul Dravid made 32 from 31 balls, sharing 79 in 11 overs with Ajinkya Rahane, who recorded his maiden half century from 40 deliveries in only his second ODI, before a high catch from Graeme Swann. Suresh Raina put in a six and two fours in three balls against the varied pace from Jade Dernbach, whose five overs went for 49. Raina looked like making a fast fifty before being taken at deep square-leg by Ben Stokes, while Ian Bell made a brave dive to dismiss Manoj Tiwary.
As England went in for the reply, 40 came from the first four overs. India tried spin in the fifth but Ravichandran Ashwin was driven for successive sixes over long-on by Craig Kieswetter, who fell lbw in the seventh.
Bell and Cook effortlessly reduced the required rate to 85 in 13 overs, Cook also hooked for six in reaching 50 from 37 balls. Ravi Bopara was caught for a useful 25 but Cook stayed on, leaving India still without an international victory on the tour as the series heads to The Oval for the third match on Friday.
However England will go forward without batsman Eoin Morgan who will miss the rest of the one-day international series because of a recurring shoulder problem sustained during the winter tour of Australia
Morgan has quickly become a key component of the team averaging 40 from his 48 internationals for England and having already made three centuries.