'We didn't have a chance,' says Kohli as Bairstow, Stokes blast England to win

Pune, India: Jonny Bairstow and Ben Stokes launched a six-hitting feast as England chased down 337 against India in a series-leveling win in the second one-day international on Friday with home skipper Virat Kohli admitting: "We didn't have a chance".

Bairstow (124) and Stokes (99) put on 175 for the second wicket and smashed 17 sixes between them as England romped home in 43.3 overs with six wickets to spare in Pune.

The three-match series is now level at 1-1 with the decider on Sunday.


"It was some of the most amazing batting you'll see when chasing," India skipper Virat Kohli said of the England onslaught.

"They totally blew us away during that partnership of Jonny and Ben Stokes. We didn't even have a chance during that partnership."

The left-handed Stokes, who hit 10 sixes in his 52-ball blitz, missed out on his hundred after being caught behind off Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Bairstow fell to Prasidh Krishna, who also bowled stand-in-skipper Jos Buttler for a duck.

England lost three wickets for three runs, but Dawid Malan (16) and debutant Liam Livingstone (27) took the team home with an unbroken stand of 50.

It was England's fifth-highest ODI chase and their best against India.

Bairstow, who was named man of the match, led the charge, tearing into the Indian attack with a 110-run opening stand with Jason Roy, who made 55.

'No fear'

Roy was run out for 55 in a mix-up with Bairstow, who then combined with Stokes to trump K.L. Rahul's 108 that helped India to 336-6 in 50 overs after being put in to bat first.

Bairstow reached his 11th ODI hundred in 95 balls with a six off Kuldeep Yadav, who also took a hammering from Stokes, the Durham left-hander hammering him for three successive sixes in one over as he raced from 50 to 99 in just 12 balls.

"Over the years, we have set big totals, we have chased big totals," said Stokes. "We don't really fear too much to be honest."

Buttler echoed the views of regular captain Eoin Morgan, who was ruled out of the final two ODIs with a split webbing in his hand, about England's aggressive brand of play.

"Delighted with the response of the guys," said Buttler.

"We put in a very good bowling performance to restrict India to that total. I am delighted that we continued to commit to the fashion we want to play our cricket."

Earlier Rahul was involved in century stands with Kohli, who made 66, and then Rishabh Pant, who smashed a rapid 77.

Reece Topley sent back Shikhar Dhawan caught at slip for four and fellow quick Sam Curran got Rohit Sharma out for 25.

Kohli and Rahul put on 121 for the second wicket to lay the foundations of India's challenging total.

Kohli, who was dropped on 35 by Buttler off Adil Rashid, completed his fifth fifty in seven international innings before being finally caught by Buttler off Rashid.

Rahul, who made an unbeaten 62 in India's win in the opening game on Tuesday, reached his fifth ODI hundred.

He put on 113 for the third wicket with Pant before he was caught off Tom Curran. His 114-ball knock included seven fours and two sixes.

Pant reached his fifty with a six and smashed seven sixes in his 40-ball blitz.

Hardik Pandya hit 35 off 16 balls as India finished with a flourish, scoring 126 runs from the last 10 overs, but the effort was not enough on a batting-friendly pitch.

 'it just happens'

The England innings witnessed a total of 20 hits over the fence in comparison to India's 14 in their score of 336-6.

"To be honest it's just happening that way. There hasn't been a conversation saying we must hit more sixes," said man of the match Bairstow.

"But I think if you look at games going around the world whether that be T20s or 50-over cricket, the team that hits the most boundaries wins the game."

He added: "We hit 20 sixes, that's an extraordinary number in one game. We know if we can keep hitting boundaries and putting bowlers under pressure they know if they miss their length they could go for six.

"Executing won't happen every single time and people will get out doing it but everyone in the dressing room is backing the person in the middle. If they want to hit the ball for six, they believe in everyone's ability."

Bairstow and Jason Roy, who made 55, set up the chase in their opening stand of 110 to take the attack to the Indian bowlers.

The right-left batting pair of Bairstow and Stokes went into over-drive between overs 31 and 35 with the England total shooting from 194 to 281.

"I got told a couple of stats after the game and didn't realize it was like that," said Bairstow, who recorded his 11th ODI ton.

"We had  87 runs in five overs...if you're able to put together those overs back-to-back you put yourself in a position to win the game more often than not."

On Stokes, he said, "The matchups Ben decided to take down were the right matchups and he struck it beautifully. There is a method, I promise you. We're not just playing shots and slogging."

India skipper Virat Kohli praised the England pyrotechnics.

"It was some of the most amazing batting you'll see when chasing," said Kohli.

"They totally blew us away during that partnership of Jonny and Ben Stokes. We didn't even have a chance during that partnership."

Batting great Sunil Gavaskar had said Bairstow looked "uninterested" in his Test outings early this month when he scored three ducks out of his four innings in two India games.

Bairstow said he will await Gavaskar's call for more on this conversation.

"First of all, no, I hadn't heard that, and secondly, I am interested as to how opinion can have been made especially when there has been no correspondence and communication between myself and him," said Bairstow.

"So he is more than welcome to give me a ring and I will speak to him about my will to do well in Test cricket and the enjoyment I do get out of playing Test cricket."

Joe Root's England went down to India 3-1 in the Tests and then the tourists, led by Eoin Morgan, lost the Twenty20 series 3-2.

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