England post 246 as they battle to keep one-day series alive against India

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England set India a target of 247 as they attempted to avoid a Royal London Series defeat on the third anniversary of their World Cup win at Lord’s.

England just crept above the 241 they made in the unforgettable 2019 final, a score that was enough to tie the match with New Zealand and force a decisive super over, but were second favourites at the halfway stage after being kept in check by the tourists.

Moeen Ali top-scored with 47 from number seven but was denied a first half-century in almost five years when he fell to Yuzvendra Chahal. The left-arm wrist-spinner took four for 47, claiming the key top-order trio of Jonny Bairstow, Joe Root and Ben Stokes.

Ben Stokes fell to Yuzvendra Chahal
Ben Stokes fell to Yuzvendra Chahal (Zac Goodwin/PA)

After capitulating for 110 at the Kia Oval 48 hours earlier, England were once again asked to bat first and soon saw Mohammed Shami and Jasprit Bumrah regularly beating the bat. Jason Roy, whose place in the side has started to come under question, saw Shami go past his outside edge on a handful of occasions and was then done on the inside by Bumrah.

He was beginning to fashion his response, forcing a couple of shots through the infield and stepping to leg to smear Shami for six, when he gave it away. All-rounder Hardik Pandya had just entered the attack, and struck Bairstow in the rib, when Roy (23) pinged a soft leg-stump delivery straight to the catcher at deep square.

With 46 for one from the powerplay, England at least had a base to work from, with Bairstow taking advantage of some friendly short balls.

That is when Chahal entered the equation and seized control. Bairstow was first to succumb for a run-a-ball 38, aiming a full-blooded slog-sweep towards the stands but seeing a flatter delivery skid into middle stump.

Jonny Bairstow scored 38
Jonny Bairstow scored 38 (Zac Goodwin/PA)

Root, England’s best player of spin, was also undone through the air – sweeping too early at one that was tossed a little higher and lbw for 11.

Stokes looked to have found a method when he whipped two wristy reverse-sweeps to the ropes but he went to the same well for a third time and was hit on the back leg clean in front of middle.

Shami had also returned to add to England’s woes, cleaning up captain Jos Buttler fifth ball with a full, swinging delivery that was just too good. Having arrived at the crease at 102 for five, Moeen was involved in England’s two biggest stands, adding 46 with Liam Livingstone and 62 with David Willey.

Livingstone made 33 before his attacking instincts got the best of him, taking on three successive short balls from Pandya. The first was flapped for six, the second pulled for four and the third shovelled straight to deep midwicket.

Moeen picked his moments slightly better, pounding a couple of big sixes – including one off Prasidh Krishna that cleared the stand – but also looking for gaps. Willey offered handy support, making the best of drops on one and 24, but neither were able to see it through.

Moeen’s hopes of a first fifty since 2017 ended when he holed out, Chahal capping his excellent day, while Willey launched Bumrah down the ground for 41. Brydon Carse and Reece Topley were dismissed at the death.

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