India vs England: Virat Kohli, Cheteshwar Pujara Lead India Recovery at Vizag
Really it’s a matter of surprise that everyone is busy talking about the opening partner of Alastair Cook since the year 2012, but none of them has noticed about the poor and horrific form of Indian opening pair since the year 2013.
It was in the year 2015 against Bangladesh when Indian openers shared 100 runs for the first wicket. Before this, it came in the year 2013 when Murali Vijay and Chetshwar Pujara shared 100 runs against Australia. Indian opening failures have been the case from past many years abut have been unheard and unnoticed due to unknown reasons.
Today, in hope of turning the things in favour of the Indian team, Captain Virat Kohli called in KL Rahul in place of Gautam Gambhir but the results were the same, a non-sense shot to bring an end to the innings at the score of 0. Known for is the aggressive style of play, KL Rahul poked to an outside off delivery, looking to open his account with a drive but that took an edge of his bat before resting safely in hands of Ben Stokes at slips. KL Rahul was dumbstruck, he would not have asked for this on his return but that was the reality which will now force him to bat carefully in the next innings which he plays.
Soon after eclipsing the milestone of the 3000-run mark in Test cricket, Murali Vijay followed KL Rahul after James Anderson took him by surprise by a bouncer, which made a contact with Vijay’s bat, before, again resting at in safe pair of hands of Ben Stokes. The opening pair of the Indian team was back in the pavilion of with the completion of 5 overs with bowlers getting no or little assistance from the pitch. It was a normal delivery from Stuart Broad on which KL Rahul gifted his wicket and it was an extraordinary ball from Anderson which provided England with a wicket. The pitch had no role to play in both the cases.
The responsibility to carry the team to safety was again on the wall-in-construction Chetehwar Pujara and Skipper Virat Kohli to give some positive vibes to the Indian team, which erstwhile have been pushed into a pit by England bowlers. They started off well taking singles giving no chance to England bowlers. Slowly, they opened their arms and were hitting occasional boundaries, especially Virat Kohli.
Just like Indian skipper did in the last game, Alastair Cook invited his spinner to roll his arm in 11th over of the day but this time, a responsible Pujara and a vigilant Virat Kohli decided not to experiment anything new giving no chance to the bowler.
Though in between, there was a small mix-up between Virat Kohli and Chetshwar Pujara which could have resulted in the wicket of Pujara as he ran half way down the crease without getting any signal from Virat Kohli. On his race back to the crease, he even lost his bat but soon dived to full to cover the distance, followed by a deep breath to realise that things are normal now. But Virat Kohli was not at all amused with this and was upset by his partner.
Still, it can be said that Indian team made a timely and lively recovery and shared the session with England team by scoring 92 runs in the first session at the loss of two wickets. Both the batsmen will have a responsibility to bat as long as they can to keep the team on a safe track to post a huge total on the board.
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