Dhoni: Raina's spell was crucial

India

Skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni lauded the collective performance of part-time spinners Suresh Raina and Ambati Rayudu, after India gathered a convincing six-wicket victory over England in Saturday's third ODI at Trent Bridge in Nottingham.

Skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni lauded the collective performance of part-time spinners Suresh Raina and Ambati Rayudu, after India gathered a convincing six-wicket victory over England in Saturday's third ODI at Trent Bridge in Nottingham.

The hosts were restricted to a modest total of 227 all out. While specialist spin bowler Ravichandran Ashwin orchestrated the bulk of the damage with a fine haul of three for 39, Rayudu and Raina contributed a breakthrough each in the absence of injured seamer Mohit Sharma.

Rayudu's superb all-round performance was completed by a commanding 64 not out, which was complemented by Raina's brisk 42, as the Indians secured victory with all of seven overs to spare.

"I was surprised by how much it turned. That really brought our spinners into the game. I felt Raina's spell was crucial because Mohit got injured and we were not really sure whether he would come back and bowl the seven overs he had to bowl," said Dhoni.

"So I had to get those seven overs from the part-timers. I am happy that Raina and Rayudu contributed more than the seven overs and there was less pressure on me."

Mohit's outstanding run-out of batsman Ian Bell and Raina's great catch to get rid of all-rounder Ben Stokes, too, drew praise from Dhoni.

"It is a fantastic performance by the whole team. What was brilliant, apart from the bowling, was the fielding also. Bell's wicket at that point of time was very crucial. Raina's catch in the slips. Those are the things that really helps you as a team," he concluded.

The fourth ODI will get underway in Edgbaston on Tuesday. Headingley in Leeds will host the fifth and final ODI 72 hours later. A one-off Twenty20 International in Birmingham will follow.

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