Suryakumar Yadav’s fearless half-century on maiden T20I innings and Hardik Pandya’s brilliant bowling performance set up a series-leveling 8-run win for India in the fourth T20 International against England at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad on Thursday.
Chasing 186 for the series win, England did not get off to an ideal start as India’s experience bowler Bhuvneshwar Kumar removed last match’s hero Jos Buttler for 9 in the 3rd over.
Another wicket could have pressed the panic button for England but opener Jason Roy and top-ranked T20I batsman Dawid Malan had other plans. Malan took the minimal risks as Roy scored at a rapid pace, courtesy of some authentic cricketing shots as the English duo added 45 runs for the 2nd wicket.
Rahul Chahar, playing his 2nd T20I, gave India their 2nd breakthrough when he castled Dawid Malan round his legs for a 17-ball 14 with the score at 60 for 2. Roy, who was looking dangerous, was the next English batsman to depart when he hit the short delivery from Hardik Pandya straight to Suryakumar at deep mid-wicket in the very next over.
However, Ben Stokes and Jonny Bairstow changed the equation for England in a matter of few minutes as they raced to a 50-run partnership off just 29 balls. Stokes and Bairstow picked up the gaps and found the boundaries to keep the scoreboard moving at a quick pace before Chahar got rid of Bairstow for 25.