India were handed their first defeat of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 and the loss came as a reality check for Virat Kohli brigade as they were out-battled by England, keeping their hopes alive for a semi-final berth.
England handed India a 31-run loss, breaking their unbeaten run in the ongoing tournament.
Opener Jonny Bairstow’s ton set the platform and a cavalier 54-ball 79 by all-rounder Ben Stokes took England to an imposing 337 for 7 in 50 overs after batting first, neutralizing the spin duo of Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav with some big hitting.
The total proved to be good enough as Rohit Sharma’s 25th ODI hundred and skipper Virat Kohli’s fifth consecutive half-century could only take India to 306 for 5 as England skipper Eoin Morgan rotated his bowlers effectively at the death.
Meanwhile, India’s vice-captain Rohit Sharma, who addressed the media after India’s loss to England on Sunday, saw the funny side of Rishabh Pant coming in to bat at No.4.
“No, not really because you all guys wanted Rishabh Pant to play right?, right from India, you were like where’s Rishabh Pant, where’s Rishabh Pant, there he is at No.4,” Rohit responded in a hilarious manner when asked if he was surprised at the decision.
— BCCI (@BCCI) June 30, 2019
Pant had replaced injured Vijay Shankar in India’s playing XI against England. Shankar, who was backed as India’s No.4 batsman after Shikhar Dhawan’s injury, was ruled out of Sunday’s match with a “toe niggle”.
The 21-year-old Pant made his sixth ODI appearance. He is yet to score a century or half-century in this format.