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India vs England: Openers Lead India’s Fight Back on Day Two 

India vs England: Openers Lead India’s Fight Back on Day Two
India's captain Virat Kohli, second right, celebrates the dismissal of England's Jos Buttler, first right, during their second day of the fifth cricket test match in Chennai, India, Saturday, Dec. 17, 2016. (AP Photo/Tsering Topgyal)

In the fourth Test match, it was debutant Keaton Jennings, and today, it was another debutant, Liam Dawson, who punished Indian bowlers to set up a platform for them and made them toil on the stage, for 67 overs on the second day.

The Indian team had a great start to the day as the bowlers grabbed three wickets in the first session, including that of Moeen Ali, four runs short of his second 150. But it was Ben Stokes to go back to the pavilion in form of the first wicket of the day on the fifth bowl after the players got on the field. Indian team thought that they had got a dream start as soon Jos Buttler followed Stokes after he was hit on his pads and was found standing in front of stumps as well.

Three wickets in the first session bolstered the morale of Indian bowlers but the deficiency to wrap up the tail relapsed and the pair of Adil Rashid (60) and Liam Dawson (66*) shared 98 runs for the eighth wicket.

The Indian team had to wait for 12 overs more to come out to bat as Stuart Broad and Jake Ball put a pause in the wickets column for certain period of time. However, Dawson’s quest to score a century was stymied by Amit Mishra when he castled the stumps of Jake Ball to end the innings of England, on a score of 477.

At one stage when England tail was adding to the pain, on the other hand, Indian players were injuring themselves. First, it was Vijay who hurt his shoulder while fielding and then it was Jadeja who collided with Adil Rashid. Vijay didn’t come out to in the second innings and it was Parthiv Patel was sent to open the innings with KL Rahul.

An acrobatic but an unsuccessful effort to stop the ball from flying over the boundary resulted in Axar Patel, the replacement of Murali Vijay, going back to the pavilion for a rest with Bhuvneshwar Kumar coming to ground to complete the quota of XI players on the field.
Ina race to chase the mountainous task on the board and to survive the last risky overs of the day, Parthiv Patel and KL Rahul stepped on the field and survived the fiery Stuart Broad and Adil Rashid. Stuart Broad was the main threatening weapon as KL Rahul was finding it difficult to tackle Broad. The swinging Broad troubled the batsman but couldn’t convert it into a wicket.

Parthiv Patel too found himself in some trouble, especially against spin but fortunately, the edges didn’t carry that well to be caught. But Patel’s effort was commendable as he came down to bat after being in awkward position for 67 overs today, a total 157 overs in two days.

The Indian team will need a big partnership from these new openers in order to get par England’s total. The Wankhede Test can be biggest inspiration for them where Indian team won the game by an innings even after conceding 400 runs in the first innings.

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