Dhawan, debutants Krunal & Krishna lead India to 66-run win over England

Pune: India produced a clinical all-round performance to hammer England by 66 runs in the first ODI and take 1-0 lead in the three match series at Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium, here on Tuesday.
Invited to bat, India scored 317/5 in fifty overs. Shikhar Dhawan (98) and Virat Kohli (56) set the platform at the top, before KL Rahul (62 not out) and debutant Krunal Pandya (58 not out) stitched a partnership of 112* off 57 balls for the 6th-wicket and took India to a big total.
Chasing a steep 317-run target for victory, Bairstow and Jason Roy got England off to a flying start. The 135-run opening stand put England in a commanding position but a brilliant comeback spell from debutant Prasidh Krishna saw India bounce back within a space of a few overs.
Krishna got rid of Roy (46) and Ben Stokes (1) while Thakur sent back the dangerous Bairstow (94), Eoin Morgan (22) and Jos Buttler (2) as England collapsed from 135 for no loss to 176 for 5.
Krishna came back for his final spell to bag the wicket of Sam Billings to put India in the driver’s seat.
The finishing job was done by Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Krunal, who sent back Moeen Ali (30) and Sam Curran (12) respectively.
England eventually folded for 251 in 42.1 overs, losing by 66 runs.
Rookr Prasidh Krishna registered a superb bowling figures of 4/54 in 8.1 overs, the best by a debutant for India. Shardul Thakur 3/37 and Bhuvneshwar Kumar 2/30 also made valuable contributions with the ball for India.
Earlier put in to bat, Rohit Sharma (28 off 42) and Dhawan scored 64 runs for the opening wicket. Ben Stokes provided the first breakthrough to England as he dismissed Rohit (28) in the 16th over of the innings.
Skipper Kohli joined Dhawan in the middle and the two rallied the innings.
Kohli played some fantastic drives and pulls and was in his elements. On the other hand, Dhawan brought up his fifty, with a maximum, a off 68 balls, in the 24th over, and then changed gears.
Kohli and Dhawan took on Ali, as the 29th over fetched India 15 runs. Kohli raced to his 61st ODI fifty in 50 balls, however in trying to accelerate further, he got out to Mark Wood, reducing hosts to 169/2 in the 33rd over. Both Kohli and Dhawan put on 105 runs for the second wicket.
India lost their way in the middle overs as Shreyas Iyer, Dhawan, Pandya (1) got out in quick succession with around 10 overs still left in the innings.
However, debutant Krunal did now show any nerves and he smashed boundaries consistently to help India rocket along in the final overs. He smashed a half-century in his first ODI and he created the record for the fastest fifty scored by a debutant in ODI cricket — 26 balls.
Both, Krunal and Rahul took England bowlers to cleaners as hosts managed to score 67 more runs in the final five overs.
For England, all-rounder Ben Stokes picked up three wickets, while Mark Wood snared two.

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