India produced a clinical performance to run out six-wicket victors in the third Royal London One-Day International at Trent Bridge.
Ravichandran Ashwin’s 3-39, to reduce England to 227 all out, and Ambati Rayudu’s unbeaten 64 were the highlights for the tourists as they took an unassailable 2-0 series lead.
Asked to bat first after the visitors won the toss, England struggled to gain momentum early on in bowler friendly conditions.
However, after weathering the early onslaught, Alastair Cook and Alex Hales put on 82 for the first wicket before India’s spinners once again proved troublesome.
Hales was the first to fall for 42, unlucky to see an attempted sweep off Suresh Raina balloon of his shoulder allowing Mahendra Singh Dhoni to complete a simple catch.
Cook fell soon after for 44, stumped whilst trying to show aggression towards to the part-time spin of Rayudu. England had slipped from 82-0 to 97-3 when Joe Root was stumped off Ravindra Jadeja, the right-hander over-balancing and dragging his foot out whilst attempting a cover drive.
With Dhoni rotating his four spinners throughout the middle overs England’s batsmen continued to struggle as more wickets fell.
Morgan made ten before becoming Ashwin’s first victim, caught behind when trying to run the ball down to third man.
India’s fielding then came to the fore, Mohit Sharma running out Ian Bell for 28 with a direct hit from the boundary, before Raina pulled off a brilliant slip catch to account for Ben Stokes, giving Ashwin his second wicket.
At 149-6 with 15 overs to go, England’s hopes of a decent total rested on the shoulders of Jos Buttler. The wicketkeeper didn’t disappoint either, making a watchful 42 before he was bowled by Ashwin looking to clear the ropes.
James Tredwell was keen to give himself and his other bowlers something to bowl at and his 30 off 18 balls gave him just that as England finished on 227 with Steven Finn run out off the final ball.
India’s reply got off to a rapid start with Ajinkya Rahane, opening in the absence of Rohit Sharma, and Shikhar Dhawan rattling along at five an over.
However, the latter failed to convert another start as he fell for 16, hitting Chris Woakes straight to Morgan at point.
That wasn’t enough for England to stem the flow of runs though with Virat Kohli joining Rahane as they shared in a second wicket stand of 50.
Rahane was looking in imperious form but he fell on 45 to Steven Finn, back in the side after nearly a year out.
Stokes was the next bowler to make the wickets column, removing Kohli also just short of his 50, the right-hander picking out mid-on when he had reached 40.
At 120-3, England had a glimmer of hope, but that was quashed as Rayudu and Suresh Raina got to work in chasing down the total.
Raina continued where he left off in the second ODI, smashing a run a ball 42 before being caught on the boundary by Woakes off Tredwell.
That didn’t bother Rayudu though as he went on to complete the only fifty of the game, ending with 64 to his name to see his side over the line.
India take a 2-0 lead with just two matches to play, the next being on Tuesday at Edgbaston, where England will be looking to keep the hope of a draw alive.