However, India slowly brought themselves back into the match.
Alex Hales smashed a six and a four in the final over bowled by Bhuvneshwar Kumar to lead England to a thrilling series-tying 5-wicket victory against India in the second Twenty20.
England, batting first, could manage only 87 runs from the final 10 overs to post 198-8 in Bristol, despite Jason Roy's 67 from 31 balls.
Considering the start England had, with Jos Buttler and Jason Roy racing to 94/0 inside eight overs, the pressure was on India.
- Rohit Sharma & Shikhar Dhawan needs 38 more runs to go past the 1154 partnership runs scored by David Warner and Shane Watson to become the leading pair in T20 Internationals.
Rahul was departed facing a delivery from Jake Ball, a wicket which could be more finely claimed by fielder Chris Jordan who took an wonderful acrobatic catch.
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Jonny Bairstow (25) and Ben Stokes (14), preferred to Joe Root having recovered from a hamstring injury, put on 37 for the fifth wicket but when they were removed just two balls apart by Pandya, India were able to restrict England to just under 200. Dhoni completed the catch this time around. "I just had to make sure I kept it simple".
Dhoni got to the 50-mark when he snaffled the risky Jason Roy caught behind off debutant Deepak Chahar's bowling. In a knock that didn't even last half of England's innings, Roy equalled the England record for most sixes: seven.
Credit has to be given to India's bowlers, who recovered well from a chastening start. But the expected players failed to keep rocking in the ground. We played better than we did at Old Trafford. It was skipper Virat Kohli who steadied India's ship and supported an unstoppable Rohit Sharma from the other end. At one point we thought they would get 225-230. "And I don't think we've found it yet".
The real worry for England is that, over the last three years, they have built their limited-overs strategy upon amassing vast scores on surfaces ideal for batting.
"I want to show people how good I can be and get this guy out. We watched them do it, after we couldn't, and it emphasises that we need to be better at either putting somebody off their length or hitting length". We applied pressure and pulled the game back.
India batsman Rohit Sharma: "I like to be calm, not to panic, because I know once you're there you can make up time".
The target of 199 runs was not less but the wicket condition was in favour of batsmen.