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Zak Crawley

Joe Root, Jos Buttler , ECB Twitter
Joe Root, Jos Buttler , ECB Twitter
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England Batsmen Need To Step Up And Give Skipper Joe Root More Support In The 3rd Test: Jos Buttler

Jos Buttler, England wicketkeeper-batsman has opined that the rest of the English batters need to step up and give Joe Root more support. England wicketkeeper-batsman Jos Buttler has said that it is a privilege for him to be competing in the middle against India skipper Virat Kohli.

The first Test ended in a draw but India staged an incredible comeback to take the second game by 151 runs at the Lord’s Cricket Ground. Both sides will now lock horns in the third Test, beginning Wednesday at Headingley, Leeds.

England batsman Jos Buttler
England batsman Jos Buttler (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

Jos Buttler: England Batsmen Need To Step Up And Give Joe Root More Support

The cracks in England’s fragile batting line-up were out in broad daylight against a world-class Indian pace attack. The hosts were bundled out for just 120 in the second innings to lose the match by 151 runs.

“I think it is obvious that the rest of us need to step up and give Joe Root more support. This year, in particular, he always bats well, but he seems to be in the form of his life. He has had an amazing start to the series and hopefully, that can continue and the rest of us can improve our game to give him more support,” said Jos Buttler.

“We certainly do not want to create more pressure on Joe’s shoulders. As a unit, we need to stand up to the level we can,” said Jos Buttler while replying to an ANI query during an interaction with select media organised by Sony Network.

Joe Root
Joe Root Photograph: Sri Lanka Cricket

When ANI asked about whether he could have helped skipper Root in cutting short the bumper tactic at Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Shami in the second Test, Jos Buttler said:

“Yeah, potentially. Sometimes when you have a bowler who can bowl incredibly fast as Mark Wood does against the lower order, it can be to intimidate the lower-order batsmen. We thought it was a good option, obviously, it did not work for us and that was disappointing. But still, I think it can be a good tactic at times and we will try to get our tactics spot on going forward.”

Joe Root has amassed 1277 runs playing 10 Tests in 2021, averaging 57.21, and has hit 5 tons. He scored 228 and 186 against Sri Lanka and hit 218 in the 1st Test against and in India while scoring 109 and an unbeaten 180 in the first two successive Tests when India toured England.

Jos Buttler: It’s A Privilege To Compete Against Virat Kohli And His Team

India and England provided an intense spectacle on day five of the second Test as players from both sides engaged in verbals and in the end, it was Virat Kohli’s team that emerged triumphant in an engaging match. After the win in the third Test, India opening batsman KL Rahul said that if the opposition chooses to engage in verbals with his side, then they very well know how to give it back.

“At times, it can be part and parcel of the game. As a viewer, it is interesting to watch but I think, to be honest, it boils down to 22 ultra-competitive guys on the field who are trying to win for their country.

“At times, there can be ego and some words can be exchanged. Mostly it is in good spirits, but as a side, we are focused on what we need to do as a group to get back in the Test series,” said Jos Buttler.

“Virat Kohli is an incredibly competitive guy, he loves the challenge and competition. To be honest, that is one of the pleasures of playing against him. It is a great battle, it tests you. It is a privilege really to be out there in that competition against him and his team.

“We enjoy that, we have really competitive guys in our team as well who are desperate to win and it adds to the picture,” he added.

England batsmen Rory Burns (L), Dom Sibley (centre) and Haseeb Hameed (R)(HT Collage)
England batsmen Rory Burns (L), Dom Sibley (center), and Haseeb Hameed (R)(HT Collage)

When asked to comment on the current Indian bowling attack, Jos Buttler said: “Yeah, I think they are a fantastic bowling attack and they are right up there with the best attacks in the world. They cover a lot of different bases, they have a lot of experience as well. I think they are a demanding attack to face, they keep on asking you questions as a batting unit, they do not give you much.”

“I always think that Jasprit Bumrah is a fantastic bowler. In all formats of the game, he excels, he bowls with great pace. He creates different angles and he can move the ball. He is a fantastic bowler,” he added.

England’s top three batsmen have had horrid outings in recent times. Rory Burns has only managed 617 runs in 12 outings since 2020 while Dominic Sibley has scored only 917 runs from 19 Test matches in the last two years. Haseeb Hameed, who came into the playing XI at the expense of Zak Crawley at Lord’s, also failed to make a lasting impression. Haseeb Hameed registered a golden duck in the first innings and only scored nine runs in the second.

England already dropped Zak Crawley from the XI after his string of low scores. Haseeb Hameed was brought back into the England XI after almost five years, but even he looked tentative at Lord’s.  For the 3rd Test, Dawid Malan will bat at No. 3 while Haseeb Hameed and Rory Burns will open as Dominic Sibley has been dropped from the team.
Joe Root
Joe Root Photograph: Sri Lanka Cricket
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England Can’t Win Tests With Only Joe Root Scoring: Nasser Hussain

Nasser Hussain believes the hosts England will find it difficult to win a Test match with only their skipper Joe Root scoring runs consistently. The comments came in the wake of England’s humiliating 2nd Test defeat against India at the historic Lord’s on Monday despite having an upper hand before heading into the 5th Day.

The cracks in England’s fragile batting line-up were out in broad daylight against a world-class Indian pace attack. The hosts were bundled out for just 120 in the second innings to lose the match by 151 runs.

Nasser Hussain. (Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images)
Nasser Hussain. (Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images)

Nasser Hussain: England Can’t Win Tests With Only Joe Root Contributing By Scoring Much Needed Runs

Former England skipper Nasser Hussain stressed that other batters need to start contributing if England has to make a comeback in the series.

“Robinson has been an incredible find when there have been so many injuries to bowlers. So let’s not write them off just yet, but they desperately need others to score runs,” he added.

Rory Burns Getty Images
Rory Burns Getty Images

Joe Root has amassed 1277 runs playing 10 Tests in 2021, averaging 57.21, and has hit 5 tons. He scored 228 and 186 against Sri Lanka and hit 218 in the 1st Test against and in India while scoring 109 and an unbeaten 180 in the first two successive Tests when India toured England.

The opening combination of Rory Burns and Dominic Sibley has failed repeatedly and may be changed for the 3rd Test, which begins on 25th August. The top three England batsmen especially have been under fire since the start of this year. England already dropped Zak Crawley from the XI after his string of low scores.
Haseeb Hameed was brought back into the England XI after almost five years, but even he looked tentative at Lord’s. He made a golden duck and a patient 45-ball 9 in the first and second innings respectively. Hence, Dawid Malan and James Vince, both of whose last Test came in 2018, are both under serious consideration to fill the opener’s spot for the third Test.

Nasser Hussain Loved The 2nd Lord’s Test As It Was Cricket At Its Absolute Best

England’s top three batsmen have had horrid outings in recent times. Rory Burns has only managed 617 runs in 12 outings since 2020 while Dominic Sibley has scored only 917 runs from 19 Test matches in the last two years. Haseeb Hameed, who came into the playing XI at the expense of Zak Crawley at Lord’s, also failed to make a lasting impression. Haseeb Hameed registered a golden duck in the first innings and only scored nine runs in the second.

Zak Crawley-Twitter
Zak Crawley-Twitter

Fans were treated to some end-to-end cricket at Lord’s with players giving their all to win the well-contested Test match. The cricketers from both sides had a couple of fiery exchanges but Nasser Hussain felt everything was well within the line.

“No. I love the way Kohli plays his cricket and this India side will not be bullied. The theatre and drama was exceptional. You don’t want people to get physical but we didn’t see that at Lord’s. It’s a heated game and there is a lot on the line. I loved what was going on out there over the five days. It was box office — Test cricket at its absolute best,” Nasser Hussain concluded.

With India 1-0 ahead, the third match of the series will commence on August 25 at Headingley in Leeds.

Ian Chappell
Ian Chappell
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Joe Root Isn’t The Right Man To Be England Skipper As He Loses The Plot: Ian Chappell

Joe Root, England skipper has come under the scanner after England’s capitulation against India at Lord’s, with Australian legend Ian Chappell saying that Joe Root is not the first guy to captain England. England had the 2nd Lord’s Test under control at one stage on day 5 with Rishabh Pant back in the hut. After that, Joe Root’s England deployed a strange tactic of unleashing a barrage of bouncers against India’s tail instead of targeting their wickets.

Resuming from 181-6, leading by only 154 runs, India was soon reduced to 209-8, losing both their overnight batsmen in the form of Rishabh Pant and Ishant Sharma before the pair of Mohammed Shami and Jasprit Bumrah’s partnership changed the course of the match, tilting it in favour of India.

Joe Root
Joe Root Photograph: Sri Lanka Cricket

Joe Root Isn’t The Right Man To Be England Skipper As He Loses The Plot: Ian Chappell

Mohammed Shami and Jasprit Bumrah negated the bouncers easily and added a record 89 runs for the ninth wicket to post a target of 272 which was enough for the visitors to seal a win. Speaking to Wide World of Sports, Ian Chappell raised concerns about Joe Root’s leadership skills with the Ashes to follow later this year.

“He just loses the plot,” Ian Chappell said. “His main problem is he doesn’t have a feel for the situation. England have got themselves in a corner, because somebody should have realised a while ago that Joe isn’t the right guy, especially against the better teams.”

Mohammed Shami and Jasprit Bumrah leave the field after putting India in front
Mohammed Shami and Jasprit Bumrah leave the field after putting India in front © Getty Images

He further added: “What are you going to do? Change captain on the eve of an Ashes series? That’s not a good idea. But by picking him as captain, you’re giving yourself very little chance of winning.”

Ever since he took over the job from Alastair Cook in 2017, Joe Root has led England in 54 matches and has won 26 out of them with a winning percentage of 48.14. England lost the plot with their bowling strategies against Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Shami in the first session on Day 5.

Mohammed Shami hit a fifty and Jasprit Bumrah hanged around for a solid unbeaten 34 as the two tail-enders added unbeaten 89 runs for the 9th wicket. India then returned to the field with their pacers charged up. After picking up 2 wickets early, India went on to bowl England out for 120 in less than 52 overs to go 1-0 up in the 5-match series.

Ian Chappell: England Has Got Serious Problems Now

Ian Chappell, who led Australia in 30 Tests, stressed that England has a lot of questions to answer before they tour Australia for the all-important Ashes.

“They’ve got serious problems now, because they’ve let the situation deteriorate, to the point where they have to make changes at a time when you don’t want to be making changes,” Ian Chappell said.

Ian Chappell. (Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images)
Ian Chappell. (Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images)

“At this point, they really want to be settled against India leading into the Ashes. But they’re anything but settled,” he added.

The opening combination of Rory Burns and Dominic Sibley has failed repeatedly and may be changed for the 3rd Test, which begins on 25th August. The top three especially have been under fire since the start of this year. England already dropped Zak Crawley from the XI after his string of low scores.
Haseeb Hameed was brought back into the England XI after almost five years, but even he looked tentative at Lord’s. He made a golden duck and a patient 45-ball 9 in the first and second innings respectively.  Dawid Malan and James Vince, both of whose last Test came in 2018, are both under serious consideration to fill the opener’s spot for the third Test.
BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA - NOVEMBER 23: Michael Vaughan of the BBC commentary team laughs as he waits to speak on air before play on day one of the First Test Match of the 2017/18 Ashes Series between Australia and England at The Gabba on November 23, 2017 in Brisbane, Australia. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)
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Michael Vaughan Urge England To Drop Out Of Form Zak Crawley And Dom Sibley For 2nd Test

Michael Vaughan, former England captain urged the team to drop Zak Crawley and Dom Sibley for the second Test against India, preferring Haseeb Hameed and Dawid Malan.

Zak Crawley managed only 6 while Dom Sibley made 28, the duo extending their poor form. England got to 303 in their second innings thanks to a century from Joe Root, and India needs 157 more runs on the final day with nine wickets in hand.

Zak Crawley has been out of form. Pic -AP
Zak Crawley has been out of form. Pic -AP

Michael Vaughan: Zak Crawley could Be A High-Class Test Player But He Hasn’t Scored Enough Runs

Zak Crawley scored 27 while Dom Sibley scored 18 in the first innings. Zak Crawley scored only 6 and Dom Sibley scored only 28 playing as many as 133 balls in the 2nd innings. It is perhaps hard to single out just one member of England’s top order who is in need of discovering some form but Zak Crawley must have felt himself near the top of that list, averaging below 15 in Tests since his extraordinary 267 against Pakistan last summer.

Dom Sibley’s average hasn’t been above 35 in any of the series against Pakistan, Sri Lanka, India, and New Zealand.

Michael Vaughan
Michael Vaughan

“Zak Crawley could be a high-class Test match player but he’s not got enough runs,” Michael Vaughan told BBC Test Match Special. “I wouldn’t play Crawley at Lord’s but he could well go to Australia.”

“He could suit going out of this environment for a while, play some different formats, iron out his technique. It could refresh him. Dom Sibley has done enough to stay in the side but you wonder how much further he can progress. He just can’t go up through the gears and the bowlers are able to control him,”said Michael Vaughan.

“I would bring Haseeb Hameed in for Zak Crawley. I’d also bring Dawid Malan in but he’s clearly not in England’s Test plans. Dan Lawrence has the ability to hit some high-quality shots but you certainly wouldn’t mind bowling to him early on in his innings with that technique,”said Michael Vaughan.

Zak Crawley is having a poor run as he averaged a mere 8.75 against Sri Lanka, 16.75 against India, and 5.25 against New Zealand, and 16.5 against India in the ongoing Test series, but is still being persisted with.

Haseeb Hameed has played only 3 Tests way back in November 2016 against India where he managed 219 runs averaging 43.8. Dawid Malan has played 15 Tests averaging a below-par 27.85 with the last Test coming in 2018 at Edgbaston against India.

Dawid Malan, however,  sits atop the official T20I rankings with a comfortable lead. His numbers justify this ranking on a numerical basis – in just 27 innings, he has scored 1090 runs at an average of 47.39. He’s also crossed 50 twelve times, which shows his consistency is the main reason for his prolific run-scoring.

Michael Vaughan Terms Joe Root’s 21st Test Ton As Pure

Michael Vaughan hailed Joe Root, saying the century was ‘just pure’. Joe Root has always performed against India in Test cricket. He has played 21 matches against India in which he has scored 1962 runs at an average of 56.06 with 6 hundred. He also completed his 1000 runs in 2021 in the longest format of the game.

“That was a wonderful day of Test cricket. That hundred from Joe Root – we’ve seen him play plenty of magnificent innings but that was just pure. Those cover drives, the late cuts, the way he played the spinners and Ravindra Jadeja, it was fantastic.

“He would never admit it but he does carry this batting line-up. And it means he’s not always at his smiley, chirpy best. But he was back there today and it’s exactly what you want to see,”said Michael Vaughan.

Joe Root
Joe Root Photograph: Sri Lanka Cricket

“When Joe Root is smiling, no matter the situation of the game, that’s when he’s at his best and it’s a great example to all young players. Joe Root is the sole batter in the team who you feel is of the highest class in Tests. How he can produce that quality under pressure is because he’s got confidence in his technique. He didn’t go for that chase against New Zealand because he wasn’t sure of his technique so didn’t want to take the risk.”

“But his technique looked so more assured today, he knew exactly what he was doing and that meant he could be positive. From where England were two days ago to where they are now, they have a glimmer of hope of winning because of their captain,”said Michael Vaughan.

After bundling out England for a meagre 183, India rode on KL Rahul’s classy 84 and Ravindra Jadeja’s 56 to score 278 and take a valuable 95-run first-innings lead. Despite skipper Joe Root’s stroke-filled 109, England was bowled out for 303 in their second innings, giving India a 209-run target to chase. At stumps on the fourth day, India was 52 for 1, needing 157 more runs to take a 1-0 lead in the five-match Test series.

Ben Stokes, Joe Root ECB Twitter
Ben Stokes, Joe Root ECB Twitter
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Ben Stokes Praises Skipper Joe Root For His 100 On Day 4 Of 1st Test Against India

Ben Stokes, England’s all-rounder has lauded his captain Joe Root for his defiant century on Day 4 of the Nottingham Test against India.

Joe Root struck 109 off 172 balls as England scored 303 in their second innings to set the visitors a victory target of 209 runs. England is missing Ben Stokes, who pulled out of the Test series just a few days before it began, to prioritize his mental well-being.

Ben Stokes, Joe Root.
Ben Stokes, Joe Root. Image-Twitter

Ben Stokes Hails Skipper Joe Root In A Tweet For Scoring Another Test Ton

Joe Root’s 64 in the first innings helped England from a major deficit and his century in the second innings had so much of a fight for his side as the skipper. He finished with 109 in 172 balls with 14 fours and played a lot of shots that were pleasing to the eyes. He has taken England to a respectable score which can be defended in the 4th innings if they bowl well.

Joe Root
Joe Root Photograph: Sri Lanka Cricket

Taking to his Twitter account on Saturday, Ben Stokes shared a video of Joe Root celebrating his 21st Test hundred and posted: “My man…..through thick and thin.” He also shared a heart emoji along with the post. Joe Root yet again bailed England out of trouble after their top three failed. Rory Burns (18), Dom Sibley (28), and Zak Crawley (6) were undone by the Indian pacers.

The England captain occupied the crease for 284 minutes during his innings and hit 14 boundaries. Jonny Bairstow (30) and Sam Curran (32) chipped in with decent contributions to lift the hosts past the 300-run mark. For India, Jasprit Bumrah was the standout performer with 5 for 64.

Joe Root Said England Team Was Behind Ben Stokes Who Decided To Take An Indefinite Break From Cricket To Prioritize Mental Wellbeing

Speaking ahead of the Test series against India, Joe Root threw his weight behind Ben Stokes, backing the World Cup-winning all-rounder’s decision to pull out of the series due to mental health issues. Joe Root said that the entire England team was behind Ben Stokes and wished him to be well.

At a press conference, Root had said: “From my point of view, I just want my friend to be okay. Anyone who knows Ben is aware that he always puts other people in front of himself. And I think now is the opportunity for Ben Stokes to put himself first. To take time to look after himself and get himself into a good place again.”

Ben Stokes, England all-rounder
Ben Stokes, England all-rounder (Photo | AP)

“Hopefully that can be sooner rather than later. I think cricket has to be the secondary thought down the line. He should take as much time as he needs. He has got my full support. I am sure he has the ECB’s full support and certainly the whole team’s. More than anything, we just want Ben to be okay.”

Ben Stokes suffered a finger injury during the first match of IPL 2021 and was immediately ruled out of the T20 league. He recently returned to lead an inexperienced England side to a 3-0 win over Pakistan in an ODI series, after the entire original squad was sent into isolation due to COVID-19 hitting the camp.

Ben Stokes broke his hand taking a catch for Rajasthan Royals in the now-suspended Indian Premier League 2021 and a repeat X-ray and CT scan revealed that he has a fracture of his left index finger. He missed the 2 Tests against New Zealand while his last Test came against India in March 2021.

Ben Stokes, who in normal circumstances would be vice-captain to Test skipper Joe Root, is a key figure for England. In 71 Tests, he has scored 4,631 runs at 37.04 as a dynamic left-handed batsman, including 10 hundred, and taken 163 wickets at 31.38.

England(AP Photo/Tsering Topgyal)
England(AP Photo/Tsering Topgyal)
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Marcus Trescothick Blames Scheduling And Lack Of Test Cricket For England’s Dismal Performance On 1st Day Of Nottingham Test

Marcus Trescothick, England batting coach has blamed scheduling and lack of red-ball cricket for the home side’s dismal performance in the first innings of the first Test. England was bowled out for 183 in the first innings as nine of their batsmen apart from Joe Root could not cross 30.

England skipper Joe Root’s decision to bat first backfired badly as India pacers led by Jasprit Bumrah (4/46) and Mohammed Shami (3/28) put up an impressive show to bowl out the hosts for 183 runs in the opening Test at Nottingham on Wednesday.

Joe Root
Joe Root Photograph: Sri Lanka Cricket

Marcus Trescothick: Scheduling Is Always An Issue

England captain Joe Root was the only batsman who could deal with the pace and swing of the Indian speedsters. Joe Root scored his 50th fifty in the format and ended up with 64 runs off 108 balls while Jonny Bairstow (29), Zak Crawley (27), and Sam Curran (27 not out) managed to reach the twenties but the rest failed miserably against the Indian pace trio.

“Probably not,” said Marcus Trescothick on being asked if the preparation was ideal.

“Scheduling is always an issue and, trying to get the balance right for the batters moving into Test series, of course, you would want them to play a certain amount of red-ball cricket,” the former England opener Marcus Trescothick added.

England is coming off white ball series against Sri Lanka and Pakistan. Apart from that, domestic cricket has involved the T20 Blast and The Hundred competitions.

“We all appreciate that trying to get all the cricket in for what you need for players across the whole summer — county teams, The Hundred, all these competitions going on — there’s no easy solution to get this right and something always has to give.”

Marcus Trescothick Getty Images
Marcus Trescothick Getty Images

Marcus Trescothick, however, refused to use it as an excuse.

“Of course, we don’t want to use it as an excuse but we’d love to get more time into them at the crease – bowling with the red ball, facing the red ball. But it’s not the way so you have to find a way and get into it in a different fashion.”

He called Wednesday’s performance an aberration and promised an improved show from England in the remaining days as well as the rest of the series.

“We’ll go away, lick our wounds, and find a way to try and get back in the game. Today has not been the ideal day. Of course not, but that does not define how the rest of the game or the rest of the series is going to go.”

It is perhaps hard to single out just one member of England’s top order who was most in need of discovering some form in this series, but Zak Crawley must have felt himself near the top of that list, averaging just 10.25 in Tests since his extraordinary 267 against Pakistan last summer.

Marcus Trescothick: India Is Potent And Covered All Bases As Proved By Reaching Insaugural WTC Final

He also said that India has improved over the past few years. India had lost the 2018 series in England 1-4 but since then they have scored two series wins in Australia.

“India are the most potent in comparison to where they have been for the past few years. They have a lot of bases covered. We saw them go to Australia and perform there. So it is no surprise to us. It’s just challenging and we know it’s a real contest. We have to raise our game to match up against their skills, ” Marcus Trescothick said.

“They have a good stock currently. They don’t get to the World Test Championship final for no reason, ” Marcus Trescothick said.

Brisbane Test: India beat Australia by 3 wickets at Gabba to win series 2-1, retain Border-Gavaskar Trophy Image Source : AP IMAGE
Brisbane Test: India beat Australia by 3 wickets at Gabba to win series 2-1, retain Border-Gavaskar Trophy Image Source: AP IMAGE

From 138-3, England lost their next six wickets for 22 runs in the space of just 59 balls. Twice they even managed to lose two wickets in an over. Rory Burns was the man to go, the first of four English ducks on the day, taking their total in 2021 to an extraordinary 31 from just nine matches.

England won against West Indies 2-1 after losing the 1st Test in July 2020 at home and also beat Pakistan 1-0 in a 3 match Test series. New Zealand however prevailed against them in a 2 match Test affair prior to the WTC Final as the Kiwis won the 2nd Test by 8 wickets. It was the same result in the WTC Final which the Kiwis won against India.

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India Is In A Good Position Having Bowling Out Hosts England For 183, Says Mohammed Shami

Mohammed Shami, who was at his fiery best on the opening day of the first Test against England, said that his team was in a ‘good position’ after bowling out the hosts for 183.

England skipper Joe Root’s decision to bat first backfired badly as India pacers led by Jasprit Bumrah (4/46) and Mohammed Shami (3/28) put up an impressive show to bowl out the hosts for 183 runs in the opening Test at Nottingham on Wednesday.

 Indian pacer Mohammed Shami (Courtesy: AP)
Indian pacer Mohammed Shami (Courtesy: AP)

Mohammed Shami: India Is In A Good Position Having Dismissed Hosts England To Only 183 Which Is A Good Performance

Indian openers Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul provided a solid start after India dismissed England for only 183 runs. Jasprit Bumrah took four wickets whereas Mohammad Shami bagged three wickets to put India in front.

“Obviously because 183 as per me we should make a good score and take the lead. We are in a good position, because any team you bowl out for 183 at its home is a good performance,” Shami said at the post-day press conference.

“Now the thing is that we need to focus on the first hour and according to me the ball has not done much, the way we bowled in the day, we bowled in the right length, and accordingly you have got wickets. I think, we need to focus, and (it) doesn’t matter whether it is 183 or 283, you need to focus a bit and need to add runs,” the right-arm speedster added.

Jasprit Bumrah (Photo by PETER PARKS / AFP)
Jasprit Bumrah (Photo by PETER PARKS / AFP)

Injury-stricken India, yet to get their reinforcements, took on England in the first Test from Wednesday 4th August with hopes of ending a streak of series losses that extend to 2011. Even as they have conquered Australia twice over the last decade, India has managed to win just two of the 14 Tests they have played in England.

They have drawn one and lost 12. It will be a tough task to beat England in England considering that India is struggling to find an opener to provide stability and a pace-bowling all-rounder who can bring in the balance.

Mohammed Shami: India Should Play The First Hour Of The 2nd Day With Caution And Mustn’t Lose Focus

At the Stumps, India was 21 without losing any wickets. India’s openers Rohit Sharma (9 not out) and KL Rahul (9 not out) negotiated the burst of English pacers in the evening session. Mohammed Shami stressed that the batsmen would need to focus in the first hour.

“Our first innings, the bowling part is over. Our batting part is left. I will say only one thing, you need to play the first hour with caution, because you should not lose your focus, be in control, so the first thing is to achieve this score and then think about the lead. The main focus will be to score 183 and after that whatever comes,” the speedster added.

Joe Root
Joe Root Photograph: Sri Lanka Cricket

Earlier on Wednesday, England’s decision to bat first backfired as they got bowled out for 183 in 65.4 overs, the third-lowest total a team has managed against India on the first day of a Test match outside Asia. Four of their batsmen got out without scoring, a first for England against India in a Test innings on home soil.

Rory Burns, Dan Lawrence, Jos Buttler, and Ollie Robinson were sent packing by Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami, and Shardul Thakur before they could even open their accounts in Nottingham. Jasprit Bumrah finished as the standout bowler for India with 4 wickets for 46 runs while Mohammed Shami bagged 3 for 28 and Shardul Thakur finished with 2 for 41 in just 13 overs.

England captain Joe Root was the only batsman who could deal with the pace and swing of the Indian speedsters. Joe Root scored his 50th fifty in the format and ended up with 64 runs off 108 balls while Jonny Bairstow (29), Zak Crawley (27), and Sam Curran (27 not out) managed to reach the twenties but the rest failed miserably against the Indian pace trio.

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India Won’t Want To Chase More Than 100-125 Runs In The 4th Innings, Says Aakash Chopra

Aakash Chopra feels Team India will need to bat exceedingly well in the first innings of the Trent Bridge Test since they have to bat last in the match. The former India batsman also claimed the strip in Nottingham is not a typical English wicket as there is some variable bounce.

Having lost the toss, Team India’s pacer bowlers combined to restrict England to just 183. The Indian openers then batted out 13 overs to complete a dominating day for the visitors. At the end of Day 1 of the first Test at Trent Bridge, India was 21/0 after bowling out England for 183. Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul remained unbeaten on 9 runs each as the visitors trailed by 162 runs in their first innings.

KL Rahul and Rohit Sharma. Pic:Getty Images
KL Rahul and Rohit Sharma. Pic: Getty Images

Aakash Chopra: India In A Good Position And Has To Gain A Significant Lead To Put Pressure On England

Speaking on his YouTube channel, Aakash Chopra stated that Team India needs to ensure they do not fritter away the advantage.

He reckoned: “Team India are in a good position. As it is always said, the first hour will be very important (on Day 2). India will need to bat well in the first innings because they have to bat last in this Test match. They will thus need to gain a significant lead and only then they will be able to put pressure on England. A slender lead of 35-40 runs is not a lead at all.”

Aakash Chopra
Aakash Chopra. (Photo Source: Twitter)

Aakash Chopra added: “Team India will have to bat fourth on a surface that is not like a typical English surface. There are some cracks and there is variable bounce as well. At times, the ball is even stopping at the batsman. Team India do not want to chase more than 100-125 in the last innings. That is why they need to bat really well in the first innings and put up a big score.”

Aakash Chopra also said that Team India opener Rohit Sharma has looked good so far and has a great opportunity to show his class early in the series. Many experts feel the England series is a make-or-break one as far as Rohit Sharma’s Test career is concerned.

Aakash Chopra said about the opener: “Rohit Sharma is looking fluent out in the middle. Even if he bats for two sessions, he can put India in a good position. He has the ability and he has a great chance to stamp his class at the start in a series where he will looking to prove him worth as a Test player.”

Rohit Sharma averaged 79.52 in-home Tests playing 27 innings and a meagre 27.51 away playing 40 innings. While he has 7 tons at home, he is yet to score a ton away. As a Test opener, he has enjoyed success managing 1103 runs averaging 61.28 in 20 innings. He has 4 tons as an opener which includes his career-best 212.

Aakash Chopra: Decision To Take The DRS During Mohammed Siraj’s Over Was The Moment Of The Day As Replays Showed There Was An Inside Edge Off Zak Crawley’s Bat

Aakash Chopra picked Team India’s move to use the DRS to overturn a decision and get the wicket of Zak Crawley as the moment of the day. After Rory Burns was sent back by Jasprit Bumrah in the first over, Zak Crawley and Dom Sibley had a partnership going before Mohammed Siraj dismissed Zak Crawley to put India ahead again.

Elaborating on the same, Aakash Chopra said: “The decision to take the DRS during Mohammed Siraj’s over definitely was the moment of the day. There was an inside edge off Crawley’s bat but Virat Kohli wasn’t convinced.

“Rishabh Pant kept pleading with him to take the DRS and the Indian captain unwillingly gave in. Pant was proved right as the decision was reversed. Kohli standing at slip missed the edge. The wicket of Crawley was a big one.”

Zak Crawley-Twitter
Zak Crawley-Twitter

Zak Crawley was dismissed for 27 off 68 and England eventually folded up for 183 in 65.4 overs. England lost their last six wickets for just 45 runs in the day’s third and final session and was bundled out for 183 in their first innings.  At one stage they were 138/3 but were thwarted by the brilliant seam bowling of Jasprit Bumrah (4/46), Mohammed Shami (3/28), and Shardul Thakur (2/41).

For the hosts, skipper Joe Root made 64 off 108 balls as the others failed miserably to stand up to the Indian pace bowling attack.  England won the toss and opted to bat first against India in the first Test.

One notable change in the Indian playing XI is the omission of spinner Ravichandran Ashwin, who was benched to shore up the batting. KL Rahul opened with Rohit Sharma while pacers Shardul Thakur and Mohammed Siraj replaced Ravichandran Ashwin and Ishant Sharma from the last Test match.

Inzamam-ul-Haq JEWEL SAMAD / AFP
Inzamam-ul-Haq JEWEL SAMAD / AFP
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Inzamam-ul-Haq Could See India’s Pain Of Losing The WTC Final Through Their Aggression

Inzamam-ul-Haq, former Pakistan captain praised India’s display against hosts England on Day 1 of the first Test. Inzamam-ul-Haq felt the bowling attack did a fantastic job of dismissing England out for a paltry 183 on a surface he felt was good enough for batting.

The 51-year-old noted that he could feel the pain of the Indian players on the field, after a heart-wrenching defeat in the World Test Championship final against New Zealand prior to this series.

Inzamam-ul-Haq | AFP
Inzamam-ul-Haq | AFP

Inzamam-ul-Haq Opens Up On The 1st Day Of India’s 1st Test Against England

Speaking on his YouTube channel, Inzamam-ul-Haq also claimed that Day 2 would be very vital for India.

“Day 2 is very important for India. If they score 300-350, the fate of the test match will be sealed in favour of India. The players will have to take responsibility, and they have big players. I could see their pain of losing the WTC Final through their aggression. They could not perform in that match and the aggression missing in that match, was visible here,” Inzamam said.

Ravichandran Ashwin
Ravichandran Ashwin (AP Photo/Rui Vieira)

Team India’s decision to bench Ravichandran Ashwin and go for four pacers sparked a debate, but Inzamam-ul-Haq saw that as a positive sign. He felt that the way India chose the team was an indication that they would be playing attacking cricket.

“The body language of India has changed ever since the tour of Australia. They play cricket with aggression, this has happened in the last 1-2 years. The way they announced their team by plating four fast bowlers and an all-rounder was a positive sign. India have made it clear to the England dressing room that they will be playing attacking cricket,” Inzamam added.

Team India marked a memorable day on the field to kick start the tour of England. They triggered a collapse in the final session to dismiss England for 183 in the first innings.

England Bundled Out For 183 As Jasprit Bumrah And Mohammed Shami Shares 7 Scalps Together

The pacers led the charge with Jasprit Bumrah (4/46) and Mohammad Shami (3/28) being the pick of the bowlers. In reply, the opening pair of KL Rahul and Rohit Sharma withstood a burst by the England seamers to finish the day unscathed at 21-0. Rohit Sharma and KL Rahul remained unbeaten on 9 runs each as India ended Day 1 without losing any wicket.

Jasprit Bumrah (Photo by PETER PARKS / AFP)
Jasprit Bumrah (Photo by PETER PARKS / AFP)

England lost their last six wickets for just 45 runs in the day’s third and final session and was bundled out for 183 in their first innings.  At one stage they were 138/3 but were thwarted by the brilliant seam bowling of Jasprit Bumrah (4/46), Mohammed Shami (3/28), and Shardul Thakur (2/41).

For the hosts, skipper Joe Root made 64 off 108 balls as the others failed miserably to stand up to the Indian pace bowling attack.  It was England who won the toss and opted to bat against India in the first Test on Wednesday.

Shardul Thakur also played a key role, taking two wickets in an over – including that of the danger man Joe Root who scored a fine 64, but with wickets tumbling around him, could not carry on. Sam Curran played an impressive unbeaten knock of 27 off 37 deliveries to give England some crucial runs down the order, but no other batsman could really get going, with Jonny Bairstow‘s 29 and Zak Crawley’s 27 the only other contributions of any note.

Pakistan
Pakistan cricketers (Image Credit: Twitter)
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Kamran Akmal After England’s Win In 1st ODI: ‘The Way Pakistan Played It Felt Sri Lanka Never Left’

Kamran Akmal, who has represented Pakistan in 52 Tests, 157 ODIs, and 28 T20Is, said he never felt that Sri Lanka had left England as he was left disappointed with Pakistan’s performance in the first ODI against second-string England consisting of 5 debutants after the England selectors named a fresh 18 men team after Covid outbreak in the team announced earlier.

Kamran Akmal slammed Pakistan for losing the first ODI in Cardiff on Thursday to an inexperienced England side that had five debutants in. Pakistan was outplayed in all three departments of the game as the hosts took a 1-0 lead.

Kamran Akmal
Kamran Akmal © Getty Images

Kamran Akmal Doesn’t Understand Which Way Pakistan’s Performance Is Heading

Kamran Akmal, who last played for Pakistan in 2017, said neither their cricket nor their selection process is right. The wicketkeeper-batsman said it was hard to understand how an in-form team that had beaten South Africa can go down like this to a second-string England side.

“I don’t understand which way our performance is heading. It should get better by the day but Pakistan had a fully confident team who had played PSL, beaten South Africa. Wins and losses are part and parcel but the character needs to be shown now. Neither our cricket nor our selection process is right,” Kamran Akmal said on his YouTube channel.

Saqib Mahmood dismissed Babar Azam for a duck in his first over Getty Images
Saqib Mahmood dismissed Babar Azam for a duck in his first over Getty Images

Sent in to bat first, Pakistan got off to the worst possible start by losing two wickets inside the first three balls of the match. Saqib Mahmood ran through the Pakistan top-order and he was well supported by Lewis Gregory, who too struck from the other end. Pakistan never recovered from the early jolts and was skittled out for 141 in 35.2 overs.

In reply, Dawid Malan and Zak Crawley struck unbeaten half-centuries as England chased the target down in just 22 overs with nine wickets in the bank.

Kamran Akmal: It Felt As If England Was Playing Against Sri Lanka

Disappointed with Pakistan’s performance, Kamran Akmal, who has represented Pakistan in 52 Tests, 157 ODIs, and 28 T20Is, said he never felt that Sri Lanka had left England.

“The way Pakistan played cricket, it didn’t feel as if Sri Lanka had left England. It felt as if England was playing against Sri Lanka itself. England did something that Pakistan should have done, bowling the opposition out for 141. Ben Stokes’ captaincy was outstanding,” Kamran Akmal stated.

Sri Lanka had lost all the matches of their limited-overs series against England.

“They had so many new players but to bowl out an in-form Pakistan batting line for 141 was creditable. If we had scored 250 then we could have put pressure on their batting line-up. We had a better bowling attack than them. Gregory took the new ball for England, that tells you a story,” Akmal said.

Zak Crawley and Dawid Malan steered England home AFP/Getty Images
Zak Crawley and Dawid Malan steered England home AFP/Getty Images

It has been 36 years since England put out a side with so few caps (135, with Ben Stokes accounting for 99 of them and James Vince 17 more). Ultimately, there were five new caps in the England side, the most since the ODI against Ireland in May 2015.

Top-order batters Zak Crawley and Phil Salt, wicketkeeper John Simpson, seam-bowling allrounder Lewis Gregory and fast bowler Brydon Carse all made their debuts. Zak Crawley and Lewis Gregory had played Test cricket and T20Is respectively, but the other three had no experience of international cricket.

Two days before the one-day series was scheduled to begin, England announced that seven of its personnel — three players and four members of the backroom staff — had tested positive for coronavirus. With the rest of the squad instructed to isolate after being identified as close contacts, the tour — featuring three ODIs and three Twenty20 matches — could have been in jeopardy but the England and Wales Cricket Board hastily assembled an entirely new 18-strong squad from across England’s county game.

England 142 for 1 (Malan 68*, Crawley 58*) beat Pakistan 141 (Zaman 47, Mahmood 4-42) by nine wickets

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