Left-handed opener Shikhar Dhawan, wicketkeeper Rishabh Pant and all-rounder Hardik Pandya showcased their talent with the bat, while Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Shardul Thakur starred with the ball, as India registered a thrilling win in the third and final ODI against England to clinch the series 2-1.
England all-rounder Sam Curran was handed the ‘Man of the Match’ award for his heroic 83-ball 95 not out, while top-order batsman Jonny Bairstow got the ‘Man of the Series’ award for his 219 runs in the three games, including a century in the second ODI.
On the other hand, Shardul scored a valuable 30 off 21 balls and took four wickets for 67 runs in the series- decider at Pune. Bhuvneshwar picked up six wickets in the three-match leg at an economy rate of 4.65 and an average of 22.50.
“I’m surprised Shardul wasn’t the Man of the match, and Bhuvi wasn’t the Man of the series. A lot of credit to them for bowling so well in adverse conditions,” Team India captain Virat Kohli said at the post-match presentation ceremony.
India dropped four catches, including one of Curran, at crucial junctures to pile up the pressure, but Kohli played it down.
“It’s most disappointing for the guy who drops the catch, but as much as you get disappointed, catches get put down, and sometimes they cost you. That is a part of the game.
“There’s no lack of intent, and our body language was outstanding. Eventually, we got over the line,” he said.
Speaking about the intensity shown by both teams in the limited-overs series, Kohli said: “When the top-two teams battle each other, we’ll get exciting games. We knew England are not going to throw in the towel, and Sam played a really good innings to keep them in the hunt.
“However, our bowlers picked up wickets, and it moved from us finishing it off to them getting over the line before Hardik (Pandya) and Nattu (T Natarajan) pulled it back. Prasidh (Krishna) and Krunal (Pandya) were impressive. “But death overs batting was extremely good, despite the early wickets, and if the top three can get a hundred, then we can get 370s and 380s later.
“This win has been sweet because it’s against the top team in the world, and we’re looking forward to the IPL. It’s been an amazing season, series, and this was a great way to finish it off.”