India outclass defending champions England to remain undefeated in World Cup 2023

Indian players celebrate with teammates after taking the wicket of England´s Moeen Ali during the 2023 ICC Men´s Cricket World Cup match between India and England at the Ekana Cricket Stadium in Lucknow on October 29, 2023. — AFP

India beat defending champions England in the World Cup 2023 match being played at Lucknow’s Ekana Sports City to remain undefeated in the mega-event on Sunday.

Batting first, the hosts struggled to post a big total as England succeeded in taking wickets at crucial moments of the game. However, skipper Rohit Sharma’s 87-run knock along with 49 runs from Surya Kumar Yadav propelled the Indian side to a modest total of 229 runs in 50 overs at the loss of nine wickets.

Defending a relatively low target, Indian bowlers bamboozled England’s batting lineup as the defending champions were bowled out at 129 runs in the 35th over leading to a 100-run victory for Rohit Sharma’s men.

With today’s win, India recorded their sixth consecutive triumph in the mega event as the hosts have one foot in the semi-finals and are ranked number one on the points table.

Meanwhile, Jos Buttler’s men are on the verge of elimination from the mega event as after six matches, the defending champions have so far only registered one win, which came against Bangladesh in Dharamshala.

Batting second, England struggled in front of the deadly pace attack of India and were 39-4 with their top order batter — Jonny Bairstow, Dawid Malan, Joe Root and Ben Stokes — sent back to the pavilion with the latter two getting out for a duck.

The remaining damage was done by the spin attack of Kuldeep Yadav and Ravindra Jadeja as they shared three wickets between them.

Mohammad Shami was India’s pick of the bowlers as the pacer bowled a remarkable spell, taking four wickets for 22 runs and making it nearly impossible for the English batters to connect with the ball.

Jasprit Bumrah was the second-highest wicket-taker for India with three scalps to his name.

During the second innings, a record was made as for the first time in the history of the Cricket World Cup, the number three batters of both teams — Virat Kohli and Joe Root — lost their wickets without scoring a run.

Earlier in the day, Indian batters — batting first — found it difficult to score big on the tricky wicket of Lucknow from the start as opener Shubman Gill lost his wicket after scoring nine runs, leaving his side 26-1 in four overs.

He was followed by Kohli and Shreyas Iyer as the English bowlers continued to push the home side’s batters and made them stand at 40-3 in 11.5 overs.

However, India got a much-needed breakthrough courtesy of a 91-run partnership between Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul.

After Rahul walked back to the pavilion, Suryakumar Yadav became Sharma’s partner during the innings.

Sharma couldn’t hold on to his wicket as he failed to read Adil Rashid’s googly and ended up playing a sloppy shot, eventually getting caught by Liam Livingstone after scoring crucial 87 runs, leaving his side at 164-5 in 36.5 overs.

For once it looked like India would have to settle for a score under 200 runs but Yadav scored valuable 49 runs, missing his half-century just by a run as he was caught by Chris Woakes at deep back point.

The hosts will now face Sri Lanka on November 2 in Mumbai while defending champions England will play Australia on November 4 in Ahmedabad.

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