After losing the first match by eight wickets, India powered back to win the second T20 match at Motera by 7 wickets and level the series 1-1. Indian skipper Virat Kohli won the toss and decided to bowl first.
On rather different wicket , Indian bowlers bowled with a plan and cut-off the pace and bowled lot of slow balls to English batsmen to frustrate them all along . The result was England was restricted to 164/6 in their 20 overs and were definitely 20 – 30 short of the total they had hoped for . England lost Joss Buttler early for 0. Others got starts but could not force the pace – Jason Roy ( 46) David Malan ( 24) , Jonny Bairstow ( 20), skipper Eoin Morgan ( 28), Ben Stokes ( 24) . Lack of runs at death hurt England . Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Shardul Thakur bowled well at the crunch overs to halt England’s bid for big score.
India bowlers were accurate and wily . Bhuvneshwar Kumar 1/ 28 ( 4 overs), Washington Sundar 2/29 ( 4 overs), Shardul Thakur 2/29( overs), Yuzvendra Chahal 1/34 (4 overs), Hardik Pandya 0/33 ( 4 overs)
In reply India lost KL Rahul yet again early for 0. His second successive flop show. But debutant Ishan Kishan impressed all with his stroke-play and confidence, he cracked a fine 32 ball 56 ( 5 fours , 4 sixes) and featured in brilliant match- winning 94 run stand with skipper Virat Kohli. Kohli too returned to sublime form and remained unbeaten on a 49 ball 73 ( 5 fours 3 sixes) as India coasted home to win in 17.5 overs. Rishabh Pant was dismissed for 26. Shreyas Iyer not out 8 saw India home along with Virat. England surprisingly did not go for their pace attack strategy in the first match and this proved costly. India reached 166/3 in 17.5 overs.
For England it was a bad day at the office . Sam Curran 1/22 ( 4 overs), Jofra Archer 0/24 ( 4 overs), Chris Jordan 1/38 ( 2.5 overs) Tom Curran was expensive 0/26 ( 2 overs) . Wonder Why Mark Wood was rested ? Ben Stokes 0/17 ( 1 over), Adil Rashid 1/38 ( 4 overs), Moeen Ali continues to sit in the bench.
After the match England skipper Eoin Morgan felt India have exposed England’s ‘weakness’ in handling slow conditions but competing here will only prepare them well for the Twenty20 World Cup. “I suppose the difference was in the wicket we played and how we adapted. It was different wicket from the one we batted in the first game. The pitch was slow and low and one thing that does is expose our weakness on these surfaces a little bit,” said Morgan at the post-match virtual media interaction on Sunday night.