Connect to share and comment

Cricket: England's seamers on top as India struggle

PlacardEnlarge
(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

England's pacemen upped their game on a seaming pitch to leave India in trouble at 140 for six at tea on the first day of the second Test at Lord's on Thursday.

After England captain Alastair Cook won the toss on a light-green pitch, his attack generally bowled too short, although they weren't helped by wicketkeeper Matt Prior dropping two catches, as India reached lunch on 73 for two.

But the second session saw England's pace quartet duly rewarded for pitching-up more often as four wickets fell for 67 runs in 28 overs after several India batsmen made starts but could not press on.

Ajinkya Rahane was 26 not out and Stuart Binny one not out.

Virat Kohli, dropped off the last ball before lunch by Prior, had only added five runs to his interval score of 20 when he was drawn forward by James Anderson.

This time Prior, diving to his right, held the catch as Anderson took his 70th Test wicket at Lord's, a new ground record that surpassed the mark he had shared with England great Ian Botham.

All-rounder Ben Stokes then produced an excellent off-cutter to bowl Cheteshwar Pujara (28).

Before this match, India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni had spoken of wanting his side -- without an away win in 15 Tests -- to be exposed to typically English conditions.

But he was unable to pass his own 'exam' when, to a full-length delivery from Broad, he got an edge through to opposing 'keeper Prior.

Dhoni was out for one, with Broad now having taken his 250th Test wicket.

- Jeers for Jadeja -

New batsman Ravindra Jadeja was, unusually for a crowd at Lord's, booed as he walked out to the middle.

That reflected the all-rounder's role in an alleged confrontation with Anderson during last week's drawn first Test at Trent Bridge that led India to charge the Lancashire seamer under the International Cricket Council's code of conduct.

Wednesday saw England retaliate with a charge against Jadeja and now both players could be banned from matches during the remainder of this five-Test series.

Anderson, though, didn't get the chance to bowl at Jadeja, with much-criticised part-time off-spinner Moeen Ali having the left-hander lbw for three to leave India 128 for six.

Given Cook had called for a pitch with pace and bounce, following a lifeless surface in Nottingham, it was no surprise when he chose to field after winning the toss.

Anderson struck in the third over when he had left-hander Shikhar Dhawan well caught low down at third slip by Gary Ballance after the ball pitched outside leg stump and cut away sharply to take the edge.

Dhawan's exit saw Anderson become the most successful bowler in Tests in England, his 230th wicket surpassing the record of England fast-bowling great Fred Trueman.

India's 11 for one should have become 11 for two when Murali Vijay -- who made a hundred at Trent Bridge -- was dropped by Prior, diving to his right, off Broad on nought.

Anderson didn't concede a run until his 32nd delivery but it was first-change Liam Plunkett who struck next when Vijay, aiming legside, was well caught by Ballance for 20.

Prior, who has struggled with Achilles and thigh injuries this season, then reprieved Kohli off Ali.

But, fortunately for England, the Sussex gloveman made amends.

jdg/as

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/140717/cricket-englands-seamers-top-india-struggle