England captain Eoin Morgan condemned but could not explain his side’s batting collapse in Bangalore after India wrapped up the Twenty20 series with a 75-run rout.
The rivals have traded blows throughout the two limited-overs series’ but England faltered woefully in the final round, losing eight wickets for eight runs in one of T20 cricket’s most comprehensive capitulations.
At 119 for two chasing 203 England were marginal underdogs, relying on Morgan (40) and Joe Root (42) to produce something special and seal a 2-1 series win. But, just 19 deliveries later, they were shaking hands in a daze.
They had been routed for 127 by Yuzvendra Chalal, whose six for 25 is the third-best return ever in T20, and Jasprit Bumrah (three for 14).
Morgan, wearing the shallow gaze of a punch-drunk boxer, tried to put his side’s travails into words but, like them, came up short.
“It hurts, it does. We weren’t good enough,” he said. “I can’t put my finger on it… we haven’t produced a batting performance as bad as that in two, two-and-a-half years. We pride ourselves on our batting, it’s been our strong suit for some time, and tonight it wasn’t anywhere near what it should be.
“It’s very disappointing. For maybe 60 per cent of the game we were competitive and right in amongst it, but fell away terribly towards the end.”
There were five ducks in the England innings, and just as many ill-judged shots, but Morgan felt the game pivoted on the dismissals of him and Root.
Despite scoring almost two-thirds of the team’s total, the pair fell to successive Chalal deliveries while fully settled at the crease – a vignette that turned the tide emphatically in India’s favour.
“We committed a cardinal sin of losing two ‘in’ players in one over. That allowed India to build up pressure, and we weren’t up to it at all,” he said.
“With eight wickets in the shed, a better performance by me or Joe, a 70 or 80, would have made a huge difference.”
Where England shrunk at the decisive moment, India put in arguably their most complete display of the limited-overs leg to complete a clean sweep across Tests, ODIs and T20s.
Captain Virat Kohli said: “It’s a memorable series win for us, the whole tour is. It’s been a brilliant couple of months.”