RAIN SAVES ENGLAND OR WAS THE DRAW ON CARDS ?

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England-India series commenced on the 4th of August where on the opening day England won the toss and elected to bat. India had dropped Ravi Ashwin and Ishant Sharma to play in Md. Siraj and Shardul Thakur. England don’t go with Jack Leach and opt for Ollie Robinson making it a no spin attack.

England win toss opt to bat, wasn’t the start England would have wished for as Bumrah strikes ball 5 and Burns departs for duck. In came Zak Crawley and England took some control before Siraj found the outside edge of a compact Zak Crawley and England’s key 42 run partnership had come to close. Skipper Joe Root meets Sibley in the middle, Root played a few shots early on to show his intent and soon a defensive Sibley from the other end walked back with 18(70) to his name. Jonny Bairstow was in the middle with skipper Root and the duo put up a much needed partnership where Root got to his half century and England’s 72 runs partnership came to an end as Shami trapped Bairstow lbw and walks back for 29, another nice stay but England not converting into big ones. Lawrence and Buttler both depart for duck and England were in all sort of trouble as they were 6 down for 145.

Sam Curran meets skipper in the middle, Joe Root departed for a fine 64 and Ollie Robinson too departed for a duck as Shardul Thakur had 2 in an over. Broad and Anderson did good to hang in with Curran as he remained unbeaten on 27. England were all out for a 183 with Bumrah picking 4, 3 for Shami, 2 for Thakur and a wicket for Siraj.

India in reply were off to a good start as Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul started cautious trusting their defence and shots as a brilliant 97 run opening stand was put up that came to close with Rohit walking back with 32 to his name to Ollie Robinson. England were all over India as that one wicket opened the door for England’s comeback as Pujara, Virat and Ajinkya Rahane all departed with low scores of 4(16), 0(1) and 5(5) respectively. KL Rahul was brilliant on the other end with a fine 50, Pant had a short aggressive stay as he departed for 25(20). Ravindra Jadeja had a brilliant outing with KL Rahul before the latter departed for an excellent 84. Jadeja walked back for a brilliant 56 and then the Indian tail were good to score 48 runs extending India’s total. India were 5 down on 145 with good repair work India finish on 278, 95 run lead for India. Robinson again with sheer brilliance bagged a 5 wicket haul and Anderson had 4.

KL Rahul opened in test cricket after long and did excellent with 84 in the 1st and 26 in the 2nd innings especially in English conditions.

England out to bat, a better start this time for England not a big one yet better with a 37 run partnership at the top as Rory Burns walked back with 18 to his name. Zak Crawley in next and out soon as he walks back with a 6(7) to his name. Joe Root in next and meets Sibley in the middle and some strong repair work as England push India on backfoot with a strong 89 run stand that came to a close with Sibley walking back on 28. Bairstow was in with Root and the latter had another fine 50 and soon Bairstow’s stay ends on 30. Lawrence and Buttler score a few just hanging around with 25 and 17 respectively. Root then departed with the new ball in play for an outstanding 109 and Sam Curran guides England further taking over the 200 mark with his handy 32 with the tail. Robinson added 15 to the tally and England post 209 for India.

Joe Root back at this best with two excellent innings, a brilliant 64 in the 1st followed by an excellent 109 in the 2nd innings.

209 for India to win the opening test, 13 overs in day 4 that India first need to see off and do decent to hang in for 10 overs as Rahul departed after an aggresive start of 26(38). Rohit and Pujara remain unbeaten and on the final day there was no play due to rain and the match was abandoned. India would have fancied their chances of chasing down 157 and winning the opening test but ends as a draw, England wouldn’t mind the result.

England will look to be more prepared for the 2nd test that’s starting on the 12th and will be played at the Lords.

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