Birmingham: England, on Wednesday managed to amass an under par total of 285 runs for the loss of nine wickets at stumps, day one of the ongoing first test match against India in Birmingham’s Edgbaston Cricket Ground.
Having won the toss and choosing to bat, England got off to a stuttering start as opener Alastair Cook fell prey to a brilliant Ravichandran Ashwin delivery in the ninth over. Cook looked to defend a ball aimed in towards him, however, the spin eluded the left-handed batsman, with the ball crashing into his stumps.
Skipper Joe Root walked in next and looked to stabilize the situation with opener Keaton Jennings, who looked impressive with his score of 42 from 98 balls and was perhaps unfortunate to have missed out on a half-century when a Mohammed Shami delivery tricked through to dislodge the bails.
England then found themselves in a spot of bother as Dawid Malan was quickly sent back to the pavilion as Shami picked up his second scalp via an LBW decision, with the scorecard reading 112 for the loss of three wickets.
However, Root, along with wicketkeeper-batsman Jonny Bairstow, steered the home side away from danger as they partnered a 100-run stand between them to shift the momentum and the control of the match back England’s way.
With the visiting bowlers seemingly clueless in their attempts to break the partnership, it took a display of supreme athleticism from Indian skipper Virat Kohli to put an end to their 104-run stand and, yet again, deny Root a century.
Bairstow drove Ashwin towards mid-wicket and made the mistake of calling for a second run, and Kohli brilliantly picked up the ball and launched his throw towards the non-striker’s end and got a direct hit with Root far from home, thus ending the England captain’s innings, who achieved the landmark of 7000 Test runs during his 80-run knock.
This dismissal marked the start of England’s downfall, with Bairstow, who finished having scored 70 runs from 88 balls, dragged on an Umesh Yadav delivery onto his stumps, with Ashwin picking up Joss Buttler’s (0 runs from 2 balls) wicket.
Ashwin was the pick of the bowlers as he ended with figures of 4-60 as he also dismissed Ben Stokes and Stuart Broad, while Adil Rashid’s short innings was ended by Ishant Sharma.
England will look to at least breach the 300-run mark tomorrow morning (local time) when James Anderson and Sam Curran resume their innings, although India have done the damage in the first day and will be hoping to take a considerable lead when they come out to bat later in the day. (ANI)