India’s tour of England: Bowlers put on disappointing performance in the First Warm Up Match

Sampath Bandarupalli / 30 June 2014

After Batsmen got some much needed practice on the first day, it was bowlers time but the second day of the match was washed out, which made the Indian bowlers came out to get some warmup under the overcast morning skies on Day-3. But Angus Robson and Greg Smith made merry against the Indian bowlers to take on Leicestershire to 349 with stumps on Day 3 after the captains decided to shake hands with an hour and 22 overs left in the match.

Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Pankaj Singh opened the bowling and had pretty contrasting first session. Bhuvi was on attacking mode, bowling with four slips, a gully and a point. He bowled fuller and swung the ball. In the first over, Bhuvi got Angus Robson to edge one only to see the ball race away to the fence past the clip cordon. There were a couple of close lbw shouts as well but no wicket for the seamer.

Bhuvi’s extremely attacking field gave Robson a better chance to clear the ropes which he utilized. By lunch, Bhuvi had conceded 46 runs from his seven overs, including 10 boundaries. Robson was the man who scored all the 10 boundaries off Bhuvi.

Pankaj, on the other hand, started with two maiden overs and seen the exit of Leicestershire captain, Matthew Boyce in the innings eighth over. It was a stunning one-hander by Ajinkya Rahane at third slip that got the Indians their only wicket in the session. After bowling five tight overs, Pankaj got hit for three fours by Greg Smith in his sixth to end his first spell with 6-2-22-1.

After the extended lunch due to rain, Ishant resumed for India and struggled from first ball itself. In his first two overs, he went for 27 runs, bowled six front foot no-balls and got hit for five fours. Shami, who shared the ball with Ishant at the other end, started off with some sharp and quick first over.

Shami looked the best of the Indian bowlers in the post-lunch session as sunlight came out, improving the conditions better for batting. He bowled full and fast, kept it tight and in control. By the time Shami went off the field, he recorded figures of 6-1-25-0.

Varun Aaron and Ishwar Pandey came on to the field with an hour left in the session. While Aaron bowled six overs and Ishwar delivered three. With 10 minutes to go to Tea, Ravindra Jadeja was introduced into the attack. His two overs went for 17 runs, including the successive straight sixes by Smith to bring up his century.

The final session began with centurions Robson and Smith retiring from their innings, making way for Dan Redfern and Michael Thornely in the middle.

Ishant Sharma, who was taken for 58 runs in his eight overs, came back strongly claiming two wickets in his final over and hence finished with 9-0-64-2, the best among Indians. He got Redfern caught at mid-off and Tom Wells, who edged to first slip.

Pankaj Singh (11-3-46-1) and Ravindra Jadeja (11-2-57-0) bowled the most number of overs among the bowlers while R Ashwin made late appearance in the match, bowling just two overs.

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