England v India: KL Rahul hits 101 not out in eight-wicket victory for tourists

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England v India: KL Rahul scores century in win
First Twenty20, Old Trafford:
England 159-8 (20.0 overs): Buttler 69, Kuldeep 5-24
India 163-2 (18.2 overs): KL Rahul 101*
India won by eight wickets

KL Rahul hit a sublime unbeaten century to lead India to a dominant eight-wicket victory over a chastened England in the first Twenty20 at Old Trafford.

Set 160 to win, Rahul's 101 off 54 balls eased the tourists to their target, captain Virat Kohli completing an emphatic chase with a six.

Kuldeep Yadav took 5-24, including three wickets in one over, as England's middle order collapsed.

Jos Buttler made 69 and David Willey's late hitting took them to 159-8.

But it proved far too little as India cruised home with 10 balls to spare.

India take a 1-0 lead in the three-match series, with the second T20 in Cardiff at 17:30 BST on Friday.

England outclassed

After following up a 5-0 whitewash in the ODI series against Australia with a comfortable win in the one-off T20, England were found wanting against vastly superior white-ball opponents in India.

That supremacy was epitomised by Rahul, who showed tremendous touch and timing when driving through the off side, complemented by brutal power to hit five sixes in his second T20 international century.

He was dropped on 17 by Jason Roy at backward point, while he also survived on 37 when Chris Jordan spilled a much tougher chance at long-on, but England created little else.

India were so comfortable that when Rohit Sharma fell for 32, picking out Eoin Morgan at cover off Rashid, Rahul and Kohli could just knock around singles in a sedate conclusion.

England's spinners tormented Australia so the hosts will be concerned by the ease with which India's middle order largely played them - although Rashid finished with respectable figures of 1-25, Moeen Ali conceded 37 off just 14 balls.

On a flat surface, perhaps more Mumbai than Manchester after being baked by the recent hot weather, England will hope this does not set a precedent for the tourists feeling very much at home over the next three months.

Kuldeep cuts hosts in half

India spinner Kuldeep Yadav celebrates taking a wicket against England
Kuldeep Yadav took three wickets in the 14th over, including two in two balls, to stifle England's progress

Kuldeep sent England a further warning for the rest of the summer with a prodigious spell of left-arm wrist-spin.

The 23-year-old bowled a superb length, not afraid to slow his pace and give the ball plenty of flight, doing most of his damage with a well-disguised googly.

England were 106-2 after 13 overs and on track for a challenging total before Morgan skied the young spinner to Kohli. Jonny Bairstow and Joe Root then both fell first ball, each stumped by MS Dhoni as they failed to pick Kuldeep's googly.

Buttler played another superb knock, taking just 29 balls to hit a seventh half-century in his past eight T20 innings at all levels.

But having watched the chaos unfold, he was dismissed trying to blast England to a par score, also miscuing a Kuldeep googly and caught by Kohli, two balls after he was dropped by Rahul.

Willey resisted with an unbeaten 29 off 15 balls, including two towering sixes, but England always looked 30 runs short and will now need to make plans for playing Kuldeep in potentially all three formats.

'It felt like home conditions' - reaction

England captain Eoin Morgan on Test Match Special: "Kuldeep's performance with the ball in his third over probably cost us 30 or 40 runs. We'll have to devise a plan how we're going to play him. Here it cost us."

Man of the match Kuldeep Yadav, who took 5-24: "It feels like home conditions. The wicket was dry. When I bowled the first over, I felt it was going to turn."

Former England batsman James Taylor: "England have just been outplayed. It was a masterclass from Kuldeep Yadav and it has been a masterclass from KL Rahul."

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