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England v India – Story of the match

The host nation set up a Bristol decider on Sunday with a five-wicket victory.

Alex Hales held his nerve with an unbeaten half-century to ensure England’s series-levelling five-wicket win over India in Cardiff.

Eoin Morgan’s men needed to restate their white-ball credentials after their chastening defeat three days ago – and they did so effectively to signpost a Vitality IT20 decider in Bristol on Sunday afternoon.

Hales (58no) upped the ante with a straight six off the first ball of the previously miserly Bhuvneshwar Kumar’s final over as England won with two balls to spare after a more routine chase of 148 for five had appeared in the offing.

England learn from mistakes

England were brushed aside in the first T20 international at Old Trafford as Kuldeep Yadav’s five-wicket haul put them in a tail-spin. But the England batsmen learned their lesson and, batting deeper in the crease, denied Yadav a Cardiff wicket. Hales timed his innings to perfection and his
unbeaten 58 from 44 balls saw England home.

Tweet of the day

Stokes to fire again

Ben Stokes is available to make his England return in Sunday’s decider in Bristol. Stokes had a watching brief in Cardiff after striking an unbeaten 90 from 68 balls in Durham’s Blast defeat to Yorkshire at Headingley on Thursday. The all-rounder suffered a bruised foot in practice ahead of his comeback match, but England expect him to play at Bristol as planned.

Stat of the day

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India celebrate taking the wicket of England’s Joe Root at Sophia Gardens (Mark Kerton/PA)

Yuzvendra Chahal’s first googly to a right-hander in the series bemused Joe Root. The England Test captain attempted his go-to shot, the sweep, but he executed it badly and missed by a distance. The ball struck the off-stump and Root was on his way for nine.

What next?

The final game of the three-match series will be at Bristol’s Brightside Ground on Sunday. At 1-1 it is all to play for and this thrilling series go could either way.

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