Captain Alastair Cook led from the front as England took a 1-0 lead in the one-day series with a seven wicket win over India here at the Rose Bowl on Tuesday.
After Saturday’s no result in Durham, Cook made 80 not out as England overhauled India’s total of 187-8 made in their 23 overs, with five balls to spare, after the match was shortened because of rain.
The skipper is not in England’s Twenty20 team and there were suggestions that he could leave himself out when the match was truncated.
But he made nonsense of those opinions as he and Essex clubmate Ravi Bopara (24) milked the Indian bowling attack, missing some of its bigger names, after Cook and Kieswetter had got England off to a rapid start.
Cook, not considered a one-day player until he was made captain at the start of the season, got to his seventh one-day international 50 in 37 balls, controlled the run chase and even unveiled a reverse sweep.
With eight overs left the run rate was down to a run a ball and with wickets in hand England cruised home.
Kieswetter got the England reply off to a flyer making 46 from 25 balls with three sixes, including two successive sixes from the spin of Ravichandran Ashwin.
Kieswetter has attracted some criticism for making good starts and not finishing the job off and was guilty of that again as he was trapped leg before in the seventh over.
Bell came in and immediately hit two fours off the back foot to help England race past the 100 mark in the tenth over and break the back of their target before he holed out at extra cover for 25.
India’s total was built on 54 from Ajinka Rahane – in just his second one-day international – and a whirlwind 40 from Suresh Raina, made from 19 balls.
With the match shortened Raina was in Twenty20 mode as he hit three fours and three sixes and accelerated the Indian run rate towards the end of the innings before he was well caught by Ben Stokes in the final over.
Tim Bresnan took two of his three wickets in that last over but the pick of the England bowlers was Graeme Swann who finished with 3-33 from five overs and gave his captain some control when India looked like getting away in the middle overs.
Rahul Dravid chipped in with 32 and opener Parthiv Patel made 28 of the first 30 runs before he was caught behind off James Anderson.
The third international in the five-match series takes place at the Oval in London on Friday.
India: Mahendra Singh Dhoni (capt), Ajinkya Rahane, Parthiv Patel, Rahul Dravid, Virat Kohli, Manoj Tiwary, Suresh Raina, R Ashwin, Praveen Kumar, R Vinay Kumar, Munaf Patel.
England: Alastair Cook (capt), Craig Kieswetter, Graeme Swann, Ravi Bopara, Ian Bell, Ben Stokes, Samit Patel, Tim Bresnan, Stuart Broad, James Anderson, Jade Dernbach.(Agencies)