England vs. India: 2nd Test, Day 2 – The First Day

At the end of the first day’s play, with just 33 overs bowled, I think I can say with certainty that England have the upper hand in this Test match.

It started before the start of play, when England won the toss and chose to bowl first. With cloudy conditions and showers forecast through the day, it was an easy decision to make. Anderson took quick advantage of the situation, bowling Vijay with a spectacular outswinger. On one hand, it’s a ball which would have got many (perhaps most) batsmen out. On the other hand, the way that the Indian opener got squared up trying to clip the ball on the back foot into the leg side was positively Malan-esque. Not great technique for an opener, or indeed any batsman in English conditions.

What followed was a testing, if short session for the Indian batsmen. Pujara and Rahul hung in there, but only just. Anderson’s bowling constantly tested the outside edge, and Broad was also bowling from the other end. As is almost always the way, England made a breakthrough just before the players went off for the first rain delay of the game. Rahul edged Anderson to the keeper, and two balls later the rain began.

There was a brief respite from the showers after Lunch, which allowed the game to continue for a few overs. Whilst the bowling didn’t manage to threaten the Indian batsmen, the visitors still managed to lose another wicket before rain forced them off yet again. This time it was a mix up between Kohli and Pujara, with both batsmen going for the run before the captain made an abrupt u-turn and left Pujara stranded at the other end.

What followed was the kind of downpour normally associated with large boats and two of every animal. Standing water everywhere, the kind of picture in years past which would have would have had everyone going home and coming back the next day. Instead, the Lord’s drainage system did its near-miraculous job and play was able to resume with Indian needing to survive another 28 overs in the day.

The last session started quite well for the tourists. They managed to fend off Anderson’s first spell, and it wasn’t until Woakes and Curran were bowling that England were able to break the crucial partnership between Kohli and Rahane. Kohli edged a full outswinger from Woakes to Jos Buttler at second slip (who has missed a sharp chance the ball before), and that felt like the end of India’s chances in this game. Woakes got Pandya out the same way two overs later, and Curran bowled Karthik the over after that. Anderson returned to clean up the tail, and Broad finally got a delivery aimed at the stumps to account for Ashwin.

And, as if the day couldn’t have gone any more perfectly for England, they took the last wicket late enough so that Cook and Jennings wouldn’t have to bat until tomorrow. India managed just 107 runs in their first inning, and honestly that flatters them a little. The next two days should be rain-free, and it’s hard to see anything but an England victory. But then I remember that India have picked two spinners and England are fully capable of collapsing hilariously in this situation.

As always, comments about the game (or anything else) below.



29 thoughts on “England vs. India: 2nd Test, Day 2 – The First Day

  1. man in a barrel Aug 10, 2018 / 9:12 pm

    I am not sure that the movement was all in the air. It looked as if the pitch was very bowler-friendly. If India bowl well, the English batsmen (sarc) , all completely at home in these conditions, face a big test of technique. How much cricket have they played this season in similar conditions? They might be as foreign as they were to the visiting side. Root in Australia was prone to the heavy-handed launch outside off-stump, for example. And if it seems, I think that Ashwin might pose problems


    • dannycricket Aug 11, 2018 / 12:43 am

      He might cause massive problems, but it’s hard to imagine England not getting 180 or so even if that was the case.


  2. Miami Dad's 6 Aug 10, 2018 / 10:12 pm

    Woakes bowled well. I’m not sure it’s news that he’s a really good bowler in England.

    Err…that’s all really. India weren’t great but we’ve lost matches by letting things slide in the 3rd innings before.

    Guessing it’ll flatten out from here, though the forecast is awful.


    • dannycricket Aug 11, 2018 / 12:47 am

      The issue with Woakes might be his fitness. If India can force him to bowl 20+ overs in the second innings they might push him to the point he can’t play in the 3rd Test.


      • Miami Dad's 6 Aug 11, 2018 / 6:34 am

        I actually think he’s a fairly fit player, but he’s usually been rushed back by the famed ECB “medical” staff way before he’s bowling fit.


        • dannycricket Aug 11, 2018 / 7:09 am

          That’s what I mean. A few T20s won’t have prepared him for Tests.


  3. metatone Aug 11, 2018 / 6:41 am

    Some bad luck IMO for India, I can well see the game and the series disappearing.

    Very unlikely that anyone is going to be honest about how much conditions helped England and so we’ll roll on to the next away series and fall apart again.

    On the one hand, no Sri Lanka fan says “oh we only won at home b/c it was spinning so much” – on the other, I’m not only bored of stacked contests in Test cricket, I’d also like us to have a moment of ambition now and then.

    Liked by 1 person

    • d'Arthez Aug 11, 2018 / 8:39 am

      After losing the toss, Sri Lanka have a winning record at home against Zimbabwe (and they needed an incompetent third umpire to achieve that majestic feat), and drawing records against Pakistan and New Zealand since 2011.

      Losing records against Australia, South Africa and India. It is just that they are so good at winning tosses (I think it is 23-7 for the winner of the toss in Sri Lanka, since 2011). Sri Lanka have a massive losing record at home when losing the toss this decade. Unlike the period of 2001-2010. Even the much maligned West Indies win roughly as much as they lose, when losing the toss. For Sri Lanka it is 4 wins and 9 losses after losing the toss.

      Seriously, what is wrong with inviting the guests to make a decision, if pitches are always going to be stacked against the touring side?


    • thelegglance Aug 11, 2018 / 8:48 am

      The one that always gets me is the weather excuse made for tourists (by the English). “Ohhh it’s cold and damp and they’re not used to it…”

      And the English are used to 40 degrees abroad are they?


      • LordCanisLupus Aug 11, 2018 / 10:59 am

        On many levels this has pissed me off.

        It’s been bloody raining, quite heavily, for practically the whole day on Thursday and for much of Friday with no drying conditions so to speak of. Of course the wicket was going to have some juice in it. I’m not going for the doctored wicket and nor should the Indians.

        Secondly they got unlucky to be batting when there was cloud cover, it was damp and the ball was swinging. A cool, fresh day today isn’t the one where swing is usually as pronounced. So the answer to this is to do away with the toss?

        Thirdly, India batted dreadfully.

        Fourth, a member of media went on about how Woakes would cross a body of water based on bowling well in these perfect bowling conditions. I mean, seriously, was it just 8 or 9 months ago the bloke couldn’t buy one in dry, sunny conditions? I despair sometimes.

        Fifth, we know Jimmy Anderson is a master in these conditions, but they never waste time in polishing his clock, do they? That’s clock.

        Sixth, I love how Vitu waxes lyrical after the opening Pope boundary while curmudgeon Selfey called it a freebie. Oh, and doff your caps fellas, they’ve made the 49 year serving groundsman an honorary life member. How lovely.

        I think my head is about to explode. Following cricket on Twitter with so many preening for attention is grinding my gears.


        • Mark Aug 11, 2018 / 12:16 pm

          Selvey from yesterday

          “Learning to make maximum use of helpful conditions is as great a bowling skill as learning to bowl in unhelpful.”

          And to think the Guardian and the BBC paid this man a fee for over twenty years. Really?

          You would be riddicululed if you said the following…….Learning to live well after winning the lottery is as great a skill as living in poverty.


          • nonoxcol Aug 11, 2018 / 6:38 pm

            Funny that, back in 2012, he called England unlucky because they got (marginally!) the worst of the conditions in the innings, 8 wickets and 12 runs defeat to SA.

            SA got little credit. England’s bowlers were barely criticised for taking only two bloody wickets in nearly 200 overs.


  4. d'Arthez Aug 11, 2018 / 10:42 am

    At least England lost one wicket before they overhauled India’s total. Oh, and as I write that Ishant finally decides to bowl a great delivery, and Cook is gone as well.
    Still, 32/2 is okay for England, considering that India just crumbled for 107.


  5. LordCanisLupus Aug 11, 2018 / 10:51 am

    “Sharma to Cook, OUT, got im! This is an absolute corker from Ishant! Charging in from around the wicket, hitting the deck, squaring the batsman up and snatching the outside edge with just enough movement away off the seam. India are elated. They have an opening into that fragile England middle order now.”

    “Now then. India have two wickets in six balls. It’s a beauty from Ishant Sharma from round the wicket. It’s angling in and then nips away, catching Cook’s edge. A positive innings from the England opener is over. He waits for 20-year-old debutante Ollie Pope to come down the steps before heading into the pavilion.”

    It’s a beauty, it drew Cook into it from round the wicket.

    Genuinely, I think it’s subliminal these days.


    • thelegglance Aug 11, 2018 / 10:53 am

      I haven’t seen it yet, still on my way home, but I chuckled reading the BBC live blog at that. Can’t remember the last time Cook got out to a poor shot…


      • thelegglance Aug 11, 2018 / 11:06 am

        Seen it now. It’s a decent enough ball, but he’s squared up and stuck on the crease. It’s hardly unplayable.


    • Riverman21 Aug 11, 2018 / 12:22 pm

      The 4th estate drive the narrative using the ECB handbook.

      Woakes isn’t quick enough for test cricket, but Curran is fine. Malan must be dropped for shelling catches in the slip cordon. Cook is fine.

      On Cook the number of jaffas he gets these days is so consistent maybe he should start growing citrus trees down on the farm. It could be funny. Well I’m not laughing but can we say it’s losing power through its predictability. He rally should slap a half tracker to point and see if they can get him off that.

      Liked by 2 people

  6. man in a barrel Aug 11, 2018 / 11:47 am

    Normal cricket resumes – England 77-3 and Bairstow looking very rusty


    • man in a barrel Aug 11, 2018 / 12:24 pm

      89-4, is this bad batting or is it a spicier Lord’s pitch than usual?


      • Mark Aug 11, 2018 / 12:43 pm

        I haven’t seen any cricket this morning so haven’t seen any of the dismissals. Oh and I don’t believe a word the media say so can’t go by what they say is a great delivery.

        I can’t believe the conditions are more bowling friendly than yesterday. England are quite often 100/4 or five these days. If they smash another hundred it will probably be enough.


  7. d'Arthez Aug 11, 2018 / 4:39 pm

    I am struggling to understand why England don’t declare now. It is not like they can lose from here, unless the pitch will somehow be an absolute minefield on Day 5 – if they bat on much longer and bad weather does arrive on Day 5, not only will they be batting while the weather is bad, they might also run out of time, if India make say 350 (and thus set a target in the region of 150).


  8. oreston Aug 11, 2018 / 4:45 pm

    Jonny Bairstow missing out on a century but a maiden Test 100 for Chris Woakes and England with a 200+ first innings lead, despite the customary disappointments from the top order. Pinch me…


    • Gareth Aug 11, 2018 / 4:59 pm

      Mr Mediocre as I believe the preview called him…

      Very fine innings.


  9. oreston Aug 11, 2018 / 5:12 pm

    I’m sure Sean wrote that ironically 😉


  10. quebecer Aug 11, 2018 / 5:45 pm

    Well played Chris Woakes!

    However, all of this Woakes is perfectly ready to take Jimmy’s place when the Burnley Express finally hangs them up really pisses me off. Firstly, Jimmy doesn’t look like ehe’s going anywhere quite yet and wakes is already 29. Also, if Woakes has shown anything over the last couple of years is that he’s demonstrably not going to be able to take over from Jimmy. Lastly, people forget that much as the ECB might try, there is simply no way England can play every test at Lords.


    • oreston Aug 11, 2018 / 6:17 pm

      There isn’t anybody waiting in the wings to replace Jimmy, but agreed Woakes is never going to be a serious contender. As you say, it’s already getting a bit late in his career for that anyway. I can see Jimmy, ancient of days, still playing Test cricket when he’s 38 – 40.
      Woakes is an effective change bowler when the conditions suit. Batting-wise, he’s always looked more orthodox (in a good way) than another all rounder whose surname rhymes with his (…trying to avoid automatically going into pre-moderation here) even if he doesn’t have the over all record to show for his evident talent. Will this game prove to be the career high point of his Test batting, or will it spur him on? I think it depends on what opportunities he gets, for arguably he’s not hitherto been a particularly lucky cricketer.


      • quebecer Aug 11, 2018 / 9:11 pm

        A test century at Lords certainly did wonders for Stuart Broad’s batting… but I’m being way too negative, and your point about the orthodoxy of Woakes’ batting is well made. Totally agree his role should/hopefully will be first change, and I must admit, as it stands, I’m keeping everything crossed for an opening attack of Stone and Archer when Jimmy finally retires to work the mills back up north, or whatever it is they do there.


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