The two teams went into the match on Tuesday 17 July with honours even and all to play for. When England levelled the series in the second one-day international, they made sure they held on to the No.1 spot in the ICC Men’s ODI Team Rankings. The series win was the icing on the cake.
In the decider, Adil Rashid and David Willey picked up three wickets each to restrict India to 256/8. Joe Root (100*) and Eoin Morgan (88*) then finished off the chase in just 44.3 overs for an eight-wicket victory.
“I think we were outstanding. Tone was set by the bowlers early on. David Willey (3/40) and Mark Wood (1/30) were on the money. For about three or four overs it swung around but apart from that they hit their lines and their lengths really well,” Morgan told Sky Sports after the game.
“From that point, there was no let up, we managed to get little (bowling) partnerships going at different stages and had really good chances taken when opportunities did arise. We know the conditions here really well so we were able to take advantage of that.”
India lost Rohit Sharma, the centurion from the first game, early, but Shikhar Dhawan and Virat Kohli picked up the innings with a 71-run stand before Dhawan was run out for 44. But Kohli looked in good nick, scoring a half-century and then getting to a run-a-ball 71 before the 72nd ball he faced – from Rashid – turned out to be an absolute beauty, pitching on leg stump, turning viciously, and hitting off.
That changed the tide, and while Rashid finished with 3/49, Moeen Ali was as effective, returning none for 47 from his 10 overs.
“I thought our spinners were brilliant and the chase was set up by the two openers [James Vince (27) and Jonny Bairstow (30)] and then myself and Joe were able to get going,” Morgan summed up.
Morgan won the toss in both the matches his side won, batting in the second ODI at Lord’s and then opting to chase at Headingley.
“It's the guys who make my decisions look good. At Lord's, winning the toss and batting only looks good if we play well,” said Morgan modestly.
“Like any other captain around the country or the world, you're only as good as your team. I thought we got better as the series went on, at Trent Bridge (first ODI), we were off the mark and India punished us. From there we've learnt and grown as much as we can.”
First Published: July 18, 2018, 8:10 AM IST