England won the first test match of the 5-match series against India on Saturday at Edgbaston in Birmingham. The English side dominated the Day-4 as India lost 5 wickets on regular intervals. Wicketkeeper-batsman Dinesh Karthik was the first man to depart in the starting couple of overs. Captain Virat Kohli kept the hopes alive and showed some good strokes with Hardik Pandya but once he went back, the rest of the team collapsed like a house of cards.
It was a big heartbreak to Indian fans when captain Kohli went back to the pavilion after scoring his half-century. After the dismissal of Karthik and skipper Virat Kohli, Hardik Pandya took charge and tried to graft a patient innings with the tail but failed to reach the winning mark by 31 runs.
All-rounder Ben Stokes took 4 wickets for 40 runs in his 14.2 overs. Pacer James Anderson and Stuart Broad took 2 wickets each, while Sam Curran and spinner Adil Rashid bagged 1 wicket each.
Earlier, the Day-3 ended with a twist as English pacers dismissed five Indian batsmen for 110 runs. Turning the table around, English pacers performed outstandingly well as Stuart Broad took 2 wickets, while Ben Stokes, Sam Curran and James Anderson bagged 1 wicket each. Indian openers Murali Vijay (6) and Shikhar Dhawan (13) couldn’t manage to give India a steady start. While middle order batsmen KL Rahul (13), Ajinkya Rahane (2) and all-rounder R Ashwin (13) went back early, Indian hope was rescued by the skipper albeit he left at 51.
Earlier the day, Virat Kohli and company as the visitors managed to restrict the English team for 180 runs. Indian bowlers performed outstandingly well as Ishant Sharma took 5-wickets, while R Ashwin 3 and Umesh Yadav dismissed 2 English batsmen.
Virat Kohli and company has been on a roll as Indian bowlers provided regular breakthroughs to their side and managed to blow the English batting line for 180 runs in their second innings. English batsmen Alastair Cook (0), Keaton Jennings (8) and Joe Root (14), Dawid Malan (20), Jonny Bairstow (28), Ben Stokes (6), Jos Butler (1), Sam Curran (63), Adil Rashid (16) and Stuart Broad scored 11 runs, while James Anderson (0) remained not out.
The day 2 had ended on at the equal notes for both teams as Indian side had managed to get the first breakthrough in the last couple of minutes before the end of day’s play. Spinner R. Ashwin continued his good form dismissed experienced Alastair Cook on a duck. England will tomorrow continue their second innings from 09/1. Earlier the day, Indian captain Virat Kohli reached another milestone of his career by completing 1000 runs against England with a much needed century.
Virat scored 149 runs off 225 balls with 22 rolling boundaries and a long sixer and helped his side to score 274 runs. Indian cricket team was in shambles at the tea break on the Day 2. The visitors were struggling at 160/6 as Sam Curran had wreaked havoc at the top order of the India batting lineup.
Indian openers Murali Vijay and Shikhar Dhawan gave a flying start to India, establishing a first wicket stand of 50 runs. But once Murali Vijay (20) went back to pavilion, the top order of India collapsed like a house of cards. England bowler Sam Curran was at his brilliant best as he dismissed three Indian batsmen in a span of two overs.
Ajinkya Rahane and Dinesh Karthik were dismissed in quick succession by Ben Stokes. Hardik Pandya showed some fight but his challenge was crushed by a rampant Curran.
The only ray of hope for India is now its skipper Virat Kohli who is not out on the crease at the score of 53.
Earlier in the day, Team India had restricted England’s first innings on the Day 2 for 287 runs. Indian pacer Mohammad Shami dismissed Sam Curran for 24 runs off 71 balls. Team India barely took 10 balls to wrap the English innings. Indian openers Shikhar Dhawan and Murli Vijay will start the innings and will be eyeing to give a steady start to their side.
After riding high on the fine knocks from skipper Joe Root and wicketkeeper-batsman Jonny Bairstow, England’s middle order witnessed a sudden collapse and were reduced to 283/9 from 216/3. It was Ravichandran Ashwin who wreaked havoc on England and stopped them from posting a monumental challenge.
On the Day 1, England sustained an early blow when they lost opener Alastair Cook at a cheap score of 13 runs. But Keaton Jennings and Joe Root dragged the team out of the shaky start before Jennings (42) fell prey to Mohammed Shami. After sometime, Shami struck again and sent Dawid Malan (8) went back to pavillion.
It was Jonny Bairstow who assisted his captain with a brilliant knock of 70 runs establishing a much-needed stand of 104 runs with Joe Root. But once Root lost his wicket at the score of 80 runs, the English middle order fell like a house of cards and the chief architect of it was Ravichandran Ashwin.
Ashwin dismissed Jos Buttler, who failed to open his account, and Ben Stokes (21) in succession. Ishant Sharma got rid of Adil Rashid before Ashwin again announced himself in the match by dismissing Stuart Broad.
At the stumps of Day 1 of the first Test match, England was playing at 285/9 with Sam Curran (24) at the crease getting assistance from James Anderson from the other end of the pitch.
Indian captain Virat Kohli will be looking to quickly wrap up England’s innings in the first session of the Day 2. And it will be interesting to see how the Indian batting order will fare against a daunting bowling attack of Stuart Broad and James Anderson.