Yuvraj on song to sink England
5:24pm Thursday 20th December 2012 in © Press Association 2014
England faltered against Yuvraj Singh's spin, after a blistering half-century from Alex Hales, and then had no answer themselves to India's strokemakers in a five-wicket Twenty20 defeat.
Yuvraj, the last of seven bowlers used by Mahendra Singh Dhoni, took three wickets for 19 runs to rudely interrupt England's fun at the Subrata Roy Sahara Stadium after opener Hales (56) and Luke Wright had put them in an encouraging mid-innings position.
Eoin Morgan's team lost their last five wickets for 68 runs in 10 overs to finish on 157 for six on a good batting surface. Yuvraj himself then did some of the early steering as India coasted home with more than two overs to spare, to gain the most minor revenge in this first of two Twenty20s for England's historic Test series victory here.
Tim Bresnan removed Gautam Gambhir (16) and Ajinkya Rahane (19) before Yuvraj dominated a partnership of 49 for the third wicket, hitting Danny Briggs for six, four, six high over the leg-side in the young spinner's only over.
But Stuart Meaker then kept his cool under another high one off Wright at deep square-leg when the left-hander fell just short of another six and had to go.
Virat Kohli was bowled off an under-edge trying to pull the slippery pace of Meaker and MS Dhoni's unbeaten 24 guided India home after the run out of Suresh Raina (26).
Hales raced to his 50 from just 26 balls, with seven fours and those two sixes - and he and Wright took the score to 89 for one at the 10-over mark, in a stand of 68.
But Wright got underneath an attempted big hit at Yuvraj and holed out at long-off, a dismissal which kick-started the loss of three wickets for 11 runs in 16 balls - all to the slow left-armer.
Yuvraj had Morgan dropped by wicketkeeper Dhoni on four, but bowled Hales who missed a drive at the very next ball - and then got the England captain for good measure in the same over, via another mistimed shot high to long-on.
Samit Patel's attempt at a maximum, however, resulted only in a third catch in the deep for Rahane off Ashok Dinda but England had lost telling momentum - and despite the best efforts of the innovative Jos Buttler's 33 not out, including successive sixes in Parvinder Awana's 20th over, they could not redress the balance.