India level series with emphatic win

Kochi, Jan 15: India levelled the five-match series against England in emphatic fashion Tuesday, defeating the tourists by 127 runs in the second One-day International at the Nehru Stadium here.

India did well to post 285 for six after winning the toss and cleaned up England for 158 with 14 overs to spare in the game.

All-rounder Ravindra Jadeja performed his role to perfection, smashing an unbeaten 61 off 37 balls and picking up a couple with the ball. Mahendra Singh Dhoni (72) continued with his good form while Suresh Raina (50) too came handy with the bat. Speedster Bhuvneshwar Kumar (3/29) impressed with his swing again and offie Ravichandran Ashwin (3/39) cleaned up the tail.

It was a much need win for India, who were under pressure to perform after losing the series opener in Rajkot.

England were in the hunt of the steep target as long as their skipper Alastair Cook and the dangerous Kevin Pietersen were in the middle. The duo took the score to 58 for 1 in 10 overs before Cook was adjudged leg before wicket off Kumar.

Kumar struck twice in the 14th over innings to give India the advantage, his incoming delivery rattling the stumps off Pietersen and Eoin Morgan edging one to Dhoni two balls later, leaving England at 73 for four.

From there on, the England could not keep up with the asking rate and fall of wickets at regular intervals pushed them out of the game.

Earlier, a blistering 96-run stand off 60 balls by Dhoni and Jadeja propelled India to a score which looked unlikely when they were 119 for four in the 27th over.

The partnership saw some serious hitting by the left and right hand combination. Dhoni came up with a slew of helicopter shots to enthrall a packed house.

IANS