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4.6 overs (4 Runs)
FOUR! CLASSICAL! Kohli is off the mark with a delicious shot!
4.5 overs (0 Run)
Good length ball on middle. The ball hits Kohli’s bat hard as he defends it off his back foot.
Virat Kohli the Indian skipper walks out to bat. India again in trouble and can Kohli and Kishan the heroes of 2nd T20I bail India out?
4.4 overs (0 Run)
OUT! CAUGHT! Rohit departs and Wood marks his authority in this game with his second wicket. Archer dropped one of his own bowling but has taken a very good catch off his fast bowling patrtner’s bowling. Wood once again continues his express bowling. He follows Rohit who is backing away from the stumps. Rohit goes for the pull but ends up gloving it to the left of short fine leg. Archer runs to that side and dives in front to take a very good catch. Both the Indian openers are back in the hut and it is a dream start for England. Rohit did not look comfortable out in the middle and his stay in his comeback game is a short one.
4.3 overs (0 Run)
Bouncer! A very good one. It is outside off and a steepy bumper. Rohit initially looks to play his trademark pull but retracts from the shot.
4.2 overs (0 Run)
Good comeback! Wood bowls this outside off and with pace and some movement. Rohit looks to slash but misses.
4.1 overs (4 Runs)
FOUR! Uppish but away! Length ball on off and middle, Rohit drives it uppishly but just away from Wood and the ball races away to the fence. This pitch looks a bit two-paced.
3.6 overs (0 Run)
Dot to finish the over. On off, Ishan defends it to get through the over.
3.5 overs (2 Runs)
Nice shot! On middle, Ishan places it straight down the ground. He times it decently but not good enough to go to the fence. The batters gets a couple as the fielder from mid off cleans it up before the ropes.
3.4 overs (1 Run)
On the pads, RS flicks it to the leg side for one.
3.3 overs (4 Runs)
INSIDE EDGE AND FOUR! Lucky boundary for Rohit! Good length ball on off and middle. It jags back in with pace. Rohit looks to defend but the ball comes back in sharply. Rohit looks to defend but gets an inside edge and luckily for him it goes past the stumps and to the fine leg fence.
3.2 overs (1 Run)
Risky run! Another pacy delivery from Archer. He hits the deck hard and makes the ball rise up. Ishan Kishan looks to defend and does so off the upper half of his bat. They call for a run with some hesitancy. Archer gets to the ball, shapes up to have a shy at the bowler’s end but decides not to. Maybe Kishan was on the way.
3.1 overs (0 Run)
Length ball on the pads at 145.9 lkph. Ishan Kishan defends it to the on side.
2.6 overs (1 Run)
Length and on the pads, Kishan turns it off his hips towards square leg and gets off the mark with a single. A brilliant first over from Wood just a couple of runs and a wicket off it.
2.5 overs (0 Run)
Another short ball around off, Kishan is surprised with the bounce as he fends it awkwardly towards the off side.
2.4 overs (0 Run)
Short of good length around off, Kishan hops and keeps it out on the leg side.
Who will walk out at number 3? Will the skipper come out on his usual position or will we see someone like Ishan Kishan come out to bat? It will be the latter as the Man of the Match from the last game is the new man in.
2.3 overs (0 Run)
OUT! CASTLED! Wood gets a wicket and Rahul’s poor run continues! Another early blow for India. Full and around off, Rahul looks to drive it down the ground but does not use his feet to get to the pitch of the ball. He though goes ahead with his stroke leaving a big gap between bat and pad. The ball goes through the gate to peg the stumps back.
2.2 overs (1 Run)
Length and around middle, Rohit looks to go downtown but does not get it off the middle of the bat. The ball goes off the inner half to square leg for a single. Not quite where Rohit intended to play.
2.1 overs (0 Run)
Fuller and quicker on off, Sharma can only flick it straight to mid on.
1.6 overs (0 Run)
Dot to finish the over. Exciting first over from Archer. Had pace, rhythm and a dropped chance as well. Absolute blockbuster start from Archer. Length ball on off, Rahul defends it to the off side and is happy to see off Archer’s first.
1.5 overs (0 Run)
An absolute fajita! Archer hits the deck hard at a spicy pace of 145 kph. It is in the channel of uncertainty around off, Rahul looks to defend but the ball bounces and shapes away a tad. Rahul is caught by surprise and luckily for him, he does not get a nick on it.
1.4 overs (1 Run)
Length ball around off, Rohit runs it down to third man for one.
1.3 overs (0 Run)
Swing and a miss! Good length ball outside off. It is wide and shapes away. Rohit looks to slash it through point but misses.
1.2 overs (0 Run)
Pacy good length ball outside off, this one swings back in at pace. Rohit is aware of his off pole and leaves it alone.
1.1 overs (0 Run)
DROPPED! Archer has put one down off his own bowling. Archer starts with a good length ball on off. It is not Archer express. It is a slowish delivery. Rohit is early in his push. The ball comes back gently to the left of Archer. He misreads the pace and drops a sitter. Jofra is known to take some ridiculous catches off his own bowling but has dropped a dolly here. An early life for the returning Hitman. How costly will this prove to be for England?
Who will bowl from the other end? Jofra Archer it will be with the ball from the other end.
0.6 over (0 Run)
A loopy delivery to end the over. It is on middle, Rahul starts his innings with a watchful push to mid on. Dot to finish the over. 5 from the first one without any damage.
0.5 over (1 Run)
On the pads, Rohit looks to flick but it goes behind off his pad. Leg bye taken.
0.4 over (0 Run)
Wrong ‘un again. This is quicker as well and does not turn too much. Rohit defends it late off his back foot.
0.3 over (2 Runs)
Leg break now on the pads. Rohit this time flicks it through square leg against the turn for another couple.
0.2 over (2 Runs)
Googly now! It is short and on the pads. It turns massively. Rohit turns it through square leg for a brace.
0.1 over (0 Run)
Rashid starts leg break outside off. Rohit makes his comeback in the side with a cautious push to cover.
We are all set to begin the action. The England players make their way out and they are followed by the two openers for India, Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul. Spin to start from England as Adil Rashid to start with the ball. Here we go…
India (Playing XI) – Rohit Sharma (IN FOR SURYAKUMAR YADAV), KL Rahul, Ishan Kishan, Virat Kohli (C), Rishabh Pant (WK), Shreyas Iyer, Hardik Pandya, Washington Sundar, Shardul Thakur, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Yuzvendra Chahal.
England (Playing XI) – Jason Roy, Jos Buttler (WK), Dawid Malan, Jonny Bairstow, Eoin Morgan (C), Ben Stokes, Sam Curran, Chris Jordan, Jofra Archer, Adil Rashid, Mark Wood (IN FOR TOM CURRAN).
Indian skipper, Virat Kohli, admits he would have chosen to bowl as well. Tells they spoke about embracing what they are being told to do. Tells it is an exciting challenge. On crowds not being there, Kohli says that they know England will come hard as the series is evenly poised. Adds that the crowd is an added advantage but they need to be professional and they have other things to focus on like putting runs on the board and bowling well as England are a quality side. Kohli informs there is one change as Suryakumar Yadav misses out and Rohit Sharma comes back to the top of the order.
England skipper, Eoin Morgan says that they will chase. He mentions that with a short boundary on one side and humidity comes the decision. Is happy to play his 100th T20I and he hopes that they put up a good show with the ball and then chase down the score. Mentions that Mark Wood is fit and he comes in place of Tom Curran.
Toss – Time for the all-important toss. Why important you ask? Because the side that has won the toss has won the game so far in this series. Indian skipper, Virat Kohli is out in the middle along with the England captain, Eoin Morgan, and the match referee. Up goes the coin, Morgan calls Heads and it comes down as Heads. ENGLAND OPT TO FIELD!
PITCH REPORT – Deep Dasgupta and Ajit Agarkar are down for the pitch report. Agarkar says that it is the red soil pitch and things happen quicker. Tells it is a good pitch and reminds us the side bowling first has done well so far. Agarkar feels team bowling first would exploit the slower ball option and the pitch will settle down as the game goes on. Dasgupta says that the offside boundary for the right-hander is a bit longer than the other side. Agarkar feels that 170-175 will be the bare minimum side batting first would look to get.’ Dasgupta ends by saying that the pitch will be good for batting but there will be something for the bowlers as well.
Time for the action in this high-octane T20I series between England and India to move ahead. The two teams now clash in the third T20I with both winning a game each from the previous two games. The sad thing though is that this game and the remaining two games would be played behind closed doors owing to covid-19 norms. Both teams have had their share of success and failures and the team who learns from it will go onto take the lead today. For India, it has been their all-round skills that have been on display for quite some time now as they look to maintain the tempo they gained after a win in the 2nd T20I. England though are not far behind as they too are fighters and we expect them to come out all guns blazing after having a poor outing in the 2nd T20I. A cracker of a contest awaits us as we wait for the toss and team updates which will come in a short while.
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