India take unassailable lead in one-day series following five wicket victory over England

Hosts now lead the one-day international series 3-1

England surrendered the series in a match of what-might-have-beens as India won by five wickets at the Mohali stadium. The hosts now have an unassailable 3-1 lead in the five-match series and England have only themselves to blame, although Steven Finn's disruptive knee will deflect some of that blame.

On a pitch that gave more assistance to the bowlers than any other this series, Joe Root's eclectic collection of  57 runs from 45 balls nurtured the visitors to 257, a below par total but at least problematic to chase. Half-centuries from Rohit Sharma and Suresh Raina, who finished not out on 89 from 79 balls, helped India home with 15 balls to spare, suggesting that the label problematic was as generous as England's fielding.

But what might have been had umpire Davis not called a dead ball when Finn dislodged the bails in the process of having Raina caught by Alastair Cook? India's match winner was on 41 and the wicket would have left the hosts needing 80 runs from 15 overs with five, not six, wickets left. Instead, Raina hit his third half-century in as many innings and was still there at the finish.

Neither umpire will be on Cook's Christmas card list this year. The England captain battled in vain to remain diplomatic both out in the middle where he held an animated discussion with Davis and later in the post-match press conference.

"Apparently we had been told that because [Finn] knocked them over twice in one of the previous games he was a 'serial offender' and that he was going to get called straight away.

"In the heat of the moment I think a few of us might have forgotten that. I didn't know but apparently the umps were pretty clear that they had told us, so I must have been deaf when I was listening to them."

His opposite number MS Dhoni had a solution, "Ask Finn not to touch the stumps because that will remove all controversy."

What might have been had Kevin Pietersen, who scored the slowest and without doubt ugliest ODI half-century of his career, held a jumping chance from Sharma when the opener was on 12? The 25-year-old was recalled in favour of Ajinkya Rahane, a move designed to protect Rahane from his nemesis Finn rather than as a reward for his replacement's form. Sharma put scores of five, duck, duck, four, four and four in his last six ODIs to the back of his mind on his way to an all-round-the-ground 83.

What might have been had either Jos Buttler, selected behind the stumps ahead of Craig Kieswetter, or Tim Bresnan claimed a sky-high catch off Virat Kohli? That would have left India reeling on 35 for two. As Cook said, "defending 260 we needed early wickets".

What might have been had the England selectors dropped Jade Dernbach after a series of insipid displays? Finn and Bresnan spent 11 overs tying the Indian batsmen up in knots, Dernbach took just three overs costing 23 runs to untie them. At least he was consistent here, consistently short and wide. His 9.3 overs went for 59 runs to keep him comfortably at the top of the list of the most expensive bowlers in ODI history.

It was fitting that Dernbach conceded the runs that lost the series. England had hoped to keep it alive for the final match in Dharamsala on Saturday, instead they head to the Himalayan foothills with nothing but a clutch of what-might-have-beens.

England: Alastair Cook (c), Ian Bell, Kevin Pietersen, Eoin Morgan, Jos Buttler (wk), Samit Patel, Joe Root, Tim Bresnan, James Tredwell, Steven Finn, Jade Dernbach

India: Rohit Sharma, Gautam Gambhir, Virat Kohli, Yuvraj Singh, Suresh Raina, MS Dhoni (c, wk), Ravindra Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin, Bhuvneshwar Kumar, Ishant Sharma, Shami Ahmed

Arts & Entertainment
Madonna in her music video for 'Like A Virgin'
music... and other misheard song lyrics
News
Waitrose will be bringing in more manned tills
newsOverheard in Waitrose: documenting the chatter in 'Britain's poshest supermarket'
News
The energy drink MosKa was banned for containing a heavy dose of the popular erectile dysfunction Levitra
news
News
Much of the colleges’ land is off-limits to locals in Cambridge, with tight security
educationAnd has the Cambridge I knew turned its back on me?
VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition iPad app?
Sport
Australia's Dylan Tombides competes for the ball with Adal Matar of Kuwait during the AFC U-22 Championship Group C match in January
sportDylan Tombides was diagnosed with testicular cancer in 2011
News
Ida Beate Loken has been living at the foot of a mountain since May
newsNorwegian gives up home comforts for a cave
Extras
indybest10 best gardening gloves
News
Russia's President Vladimir Putin gives his annual televised question-and-answer session
peopleBizarre TV claim
Arts & Entertainment
tvIt might all be getting a bit much, but this is still the some of the finest TV ever made, says Grace Dent
Arts & Entertainment
Comedian Lenny Henry is calling for more regulation to support ethnic actors on TV
tvActor and comedian leads campaign against 'lack of diversity' in British television
News
Posted at the end of March, this tweeted photo was a week off the end of their Broadway shows
people
News
peopleStar to remain in hospital for up to 27 days to get over allergic reaction
Arts & Entertainment
The Honesty Policy is a group of anonymous Muslims who believe that the community needs a space to express itself without shame or judgement
music
News
Who makes you happy?
happy listSend your nominations now for the Independent on Sunday Happy List
Life & Style
life
Caption competition
Caption competition
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition iPad app?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

How I brokered a peace deal with Robert Mugabe: Roy Agyemang reveals the delicate diplomacy needed to get Zimbabwe’s President to sit down with the BBC

How I brokered a peace deal with Robert Mugabe

Roy Agyemang reveals the delicate diplomacy needed to get Zimbabwe’s President to sit down with the BBC
Video of British Muslims dancing to Pharrell Williams's hit Happy attacked as 'sinful'

British Muslims's Happy video attacked as 'sinful'

The four-minute clip by Honesty Policy has had more than 300,000 hits on YouTube
Church of England-raised Michael Williams describes the unexpected joys in learning about his family's Jewish faith

Michael Williams: Do as I do, not as I pray

Church of England-raised Williams describes the unexpected joys in learning about his family's Jewish faith
A History of the First World War in 100 moments: A visit to the Front Line by the Prime Minister's wife

A History of the First World War in 100 moments

A visit to the Front Line by the Prime Minister's wife
Comedian Jenny Collier: 'Sexism I experienced on stand-up circuit should be extinct'

Jenny Collier: 'Sexism on stand-up circuit should be extinct'

The comedian's appearance at a show on the eve of International Women's Day was cancelled because they had "too many women" on the bill
Cannes Film Festival: Ken Loach and Mike Leigh to fight it out for the Palme d'Or

Cannes Film Festival

Ken Loach and Mike Leigh to fight it out for the Palme d'Or
The concept album makes surprise top ten return with neolithic opus from Jethro Tull's Ian Anderson

The concept album makes surprise top ten return

Neolithic opus from Jethro Tull's Ian Anderson is unexpected success
Lichen is the surprise new ingredient on fine-dining menus, thanks to our love of Scandinavian and Indian cuisines

Lichen is surprise new ingredient on fine-dining menus

Emily Jupp discovers how it can give a unique, smoky flavour to our cooking
10 best baking books

10 best baking books

Planning a spot of baking this bank holiday weekend? From old favourites to new releases, here’s ten cookbooks for you
Jury still out on Manchester City boss Manuel Pellegrini

Jury still out on Pellegrini

Draw with Sunderland raises questions over Manchester City manager's ability to motivate and unify his players
Ben Stokes: 'Punching lockers isn't way forward'

Ben Stokes: 'Punching lockers isn't way forward'

The all-rounder has been hailed as future star after Ashes debut but incident in Caribbean added to doubts about discipline. Jon Culley meets a man looking to control his emotions
Mark Johnston: First £1 million jackpot spurs him on

Mark Johnston: First £1 million jackpot spurs him on

The most prize money ever at an All-Weather race day is up for grabs at Lingfield on Friday, and the record-breaking trainer tells Jon Freeman how times have changed
Ricky Gervais: 'People are waiting for me to fail. If you think it's awful, then just don't watch it'

Ricky Gervais: 'People are waiting for me to fail'

As the second series of his divisive sitcom 'Derek' hits screens, the comedian tells James Rampton why he'll never bow to the critics who habitually circle his work
Mad Men series 7, TV review: The suits are still sharp, but Don Draper has lost his edge

Mad Men returns for a final fling

The suits are still sharp, but Don Draper has lost his edge
Google finds a lift into space will never get off the ground as there is no material strong enough for a cable from Earth into orbit

Google finds a lift into space will never get off the ground

Technology giant’s scientists say there is no material strong enough for a cable from Earth into orbit