Pune, March 24 (Reuters) – Debutant Prasidh Krishna and fellow seamer Shardul Thakur combined to derail England’s chase and bowl India to a 66-run victory in the one-day series opener in Pune on Tuesday.
Shikhar Dhawan made 98 but it was the blistering unbroken century-plus partnership between KL Rahul and debutant Krunal Pandya which helped India to a strong 317-5.
Jonny Bairstow led England’s robust reply with an incendiary 94 before the wheels came off their chase and the tourists folded for 251 in 42.1 overs.
India fielded the Pandya brothers — Krunal and Hardik — while England had the Curran siblings — Sam and Tom — in their playing XI.
Put into bat, India got off to a steady start with Dhawan and Rohit Sharma raising 64 runs.
Playing his first ODI since his man-of-the-match performance in the final of the 2019 World Cup, Ben Stokes dismissed Rohit to break the blossoming partnership.
Dhawan combined with Virat Kohli (56) in a century-plus stand before Wood returned to dismiss the India captain and Shreyas Iyer in his successive overs.
Stokes dismissed Dhawan for 98 and the 300-mark looked beyond India when they slumped to 205-5 in the 41st over.
Rahul, who made 62 not out, and Krunal launched a spectacular late assault as India plundered 112 runs off the last 10 overs.
Krunal raced to a 26-ball fifty, the fastest by an ODI debutant, with his audacious strokemaking and finished 58 not out.
England got off to a flying start with Bairstow combining with Jason Roy (46) in a free-flowing 135-run opening stand.
Debutant Krishna (4-54) finally ended the stand, dismissing Roy and Ben Stokes, who made one, in his successive overs.
Eoin Morgan (22) came out to bat with four stitches in his right hand having split his webbing earlier while fielding.
The England captain could have been dismissed for a first-ball duck off Krishna but counterpart Kohli dropped him in the slip.
Bairstow smashed seven sixes in his 66-ball blitz but Thakur turned the match on its head with three quick strikes that also included the wickets of Morgan and Jos Buttler.
Cruising at 135 for no loss, England slumped to 176-5 and could not recover from there.
The remaining two matches are scheduled on Friday and Sunday, both in Pune.