Opener on form as Root wins Overall award.

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Jonny Bairstow has ended the India series with personal success after winning the PCA’s England ODI Most Valuable Player of the winter, accumulating 36.4 points over the three-game series.

The opening batsman was once again at his blistering best in the ODI format, hitting 94 in the first fixture before reaching three figures in a match-winning innings in the second game. That performance saw him claim the MVP of the Match award with 22.1 MVP points with his 124 runs coming off only 112 balls which included seven sixes.

In an unusually short ODI campaign this winter due to the 50-over series against South Africa in December postponed due to a COVID-19 outbreak, Bairstow’s two eye-catching innings were enough to see him claim the prize in a series that India edged 2-1.

The 31-year-old continued his formidable opening partnership with Jason Roy, who finished fourth in the ODI MVP. Their opening two games saw them share 110-run and 135-run partnerships, leading the way for England in their run scoring assaults.

Neither could continue their form in the decisive encounter and it was left to Sam Curran to drag England back into the contest as he entered the crease 168-6, chasing 330 to win. A career best unbeaten 95 off 83 balls took England into the last over with a chance of victory before falling just seven runs short with the hosts taking a close series.

With Joe Root and Chris Woakes rested, Jofra Archer injured and captain Eoin Morgan and Sam Billings joining Archer on the treatment table during the opening ODI, Ben Stokes was promoted to number three and a more prominent role with the ball.

Stokes’ class was on show as he finished the three-game series in second place in the ODI rankings. The opening game saw the all-rounder take 3-34 before smashing an unforgettable 99 off 52 balls in the second fixture. The deciding game saw Stokes take a very respectable 1-45 before hitting 35 runs when he looked ready to produce even more fireworks. He ended with 35.7 points.

Sunday’s final ODI in Pune brought the curtain down on England’s marathon winter tour of the subcontinent which entailed two Tests in Sri Lanka followed by four Tests, five IT20s and three ODIs in India.

With no player involved in every squad due to England’s rotation policy to protect player wellbeing, the competition for the Overall England MVP for the winter was unusual. However, after scoring a huge 163.3 MVP points from the six Tests, captain Root could not be caught despite the best efforts of Stokes who led the chasing pack.

The gap proved too big to close which means Root added has added the Overall prize to his Test award after being the standout performer throughout the winter. The Yorkshire batsman’s three consecutive scores of over 150 throughout England’s two Tests in Sri Lanka and the first Test in India meant he dominated proceedings and finished 35.3 points ahead of Jack Leach in the five-day format who was in second place.

Meanwhile in the IT20s, Jos Buttler finished the winter top of the IT20 MVP Rankings with 63.9 MVP points, two points clear of second-placed Dawid Malan in a close contest. Ben Stokes, Jofra Archer and Bairstow completed the top five from the five-match IT20 series which England narrowly lost 3-2.

View the England MVP Rankings.

Keep up-to-date with the latest MVP news by following @pcaMVP on Twitter.


PCA Most Valuable Player Rankings formula explained in 75 seconds...