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Watch: Hardik Pandya drops a sitter against Ben Stokes

Hardik Pandya dropping the catch of Ben Stokes in the 3rd ODI
Hardik Pandya dropping the catch of Ben Stokes in the 3rd ODI
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Modified 28 Mar 2021
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Hardik Pandya dropped the easiest of catches to give England all-rounder Ben Stokes a second kick at the can in the 3rd India-England ODI.

The opportunity came in the 5th over when Bhuvneshwar Kumar, bowling from over the wicket, hurled the ball at full length on the middle stump. Ben Stokes planted his front foot and tried to clear the boundary over the bowler's head. However, his bat-face turned in his hand and the ball spooned high in the air.

Hardik Pandya ran from mid-off and settled comfortably under the plopping ball, only to fumble and let it slip through his hands. Skipper Virat Kohli and vice-captain Rohit Sharma stood in disbelief as their reactions were also captured on camera. Watch the fluffed catch below:

Ben Stokes was England's second-highest run-scorer in their series-leveling win in the 2nd ODI. The southpaw recorded the fastest 99 in international cricket, off just 52 balls, including 4 boundaries and 10 sixes.

However, much to Hardik Pandya's relief, the drop didn't cost India much as Ben Stokes hit T Natarajan's innocuous full-toss straight into the hands of deep square-leg. He was out for 35, leaving his team reeling at 68-3 in the chase of 330.

Bhuvneshwar Kumar's double-strike preceded Hardik Pandya's drop catch

Bhuvneshwar Kumar
Bhuvneshwar Kumar

Before Hardik Pandya's horror drop catch, Bhuvneshwar Kumar got India off to the perfect start by sending both England openers back in quick succession.

Jason Roy was the first to go. He came out all guns blazing and hit Kumar for 3 boundaries in the first over. But Kumar was up to the task and castled Roy's middle-stump on the last ball.

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Jonny Bairstow fell to India's shrewd plan of keeping the wicketkeeper near the stumps. Kumar bowled a good-length delivery which nipped back in sharply. Bairstow shuffled a long way across and missed it all ends up.

He reluctantly challenged Nitin Menon's on-field call-out but the ball was clipping stumps.

Published 28 Mar 2021, 19:23 IST
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