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India thrash England by eight wickets in first ODI as tourists chase down 269 with almost 10 overs to spare

Mirror logo Mirror 13/07/2018 Dean Wilson
a baseball player holding a bat: Sharma celebrates reaching 100 © Provided by Action Images via Reuters Sharma celebrates reaching 100

England were spun on to their backsides once again by an Indian side who look far more comfortable in these parts than they do.

An eight- wicket win with a whopping 59 balls to spare is an embarrassment for the supposed No.1 team in the world, who have an Achilles heel that needs some treatment before the World Cup.

Tormented once in the T20 series, England’s batsmen were once again sent down a Kuldeep Yadav cul-de-sac with nowhere to turn but back to the pavilion.

a group of baseball players standing on top of a grass covered field © Provided by Credits: Getty Images Europe

The left arm wrist spinner took 6-25 to claim the best ever figures by a bowler at Trent Bridge, the ground on which England scored a record 481 against Australia last month.

But two things have changed since then, the quality of the opposition and the non-stop sunshine that has made big-screen football watching a joy, but has left cricket pitches ripe for spin.

And despite the positive steps England have taken against twirlers since the last World Cup, it is a whole different ball game up against a unique style of bowler who batsmen are simply unable to pick.

a man standing in front of a crowd © Provided by Credits: AFP

“He is very good and there is no getting around that,” admitted skipper Eoin Morgan. “He exposes an area of our game that we need to improve on and I think that is a good thing and a healthy thing.

“We have played great cricket for the last six months and not come up against anybody like this so it is a chance to improve on this area however long it might take between now and the World Cup.

“There is only one of him in the world, but it is like facing a right arm leg spinner who is very good, you don’t come against many of them but when you do you need to adapt and think on your feet, so it is always a good challenge.”

a cricket player during a game © Provided by Credits: PA

With no-one doing what Kuldeep does, he even made a mockery of England’s best batsman as the out of form Joe Root missed the ball by such a distance it might not have made any difference had he realised which way it was turning.

After capturing three wickets in 11 balls in his opening burst, it was always going to be a recovery of sorts for England with Ben Stokes scoring the slowest fifty for England in 13 years from 102 balls.

A total of 268 all out was never enough to trouble the Indian batsmen, but Rohit Sharma’s second successive hundred coupled with 75 from Virat Kohli made the chase a walk in the park.

Cricket - England v India - First One Day International - Trent Bridge, Nottingham, Britain - July 12, 2018   India fans   Action Images via Reuters/Peter Cziborra © Reuters Cricket - England v India - First One Day International - Trent Bridge, Nottingham, Britain - July 12, 2018 India fans Action Images via Reuters/Peter Cziborra

But the worry for England is that the trial by spin is set to continue.

“That was as clinical as it could be,” said Kohli. “And Kuldeep was outstanding. He is making a strong case for himself to be included in our Test squad. Watching the England batsmen struggling against him we are tempted to do that.”

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