After playing a rather uneventful draw at Nottingham mainly because of the dead pitch that provided no assistance whatsoever to the bowlers, India will now face the host’s at the Mecca of cricket, Lords in the second test of the series. With the momentum partially on their side, especially because of the fact that their batsmen somewhat outplayed the batsmen of the home team, India would fancy their chances to bring about a famous win at the historic venue.
For most part of the test match at Nottingham, the Indians were in complete control of the situation. It was only the last wicket 198 run partnership that took the match away from them. If there is one thing that MS Dhoni just can’t seem to find is the way to convert a match winning chance into a win. He has now led 5 matches in a row slip from the palm of his hands and settle into the oppositions bag or rather just end in a draw.
What the Indians will be happy of is the fact that their batsmen have found their mojo right at the start of the series. Murali Vijay has been exceptional in the recent past and so has been Ajinkya Rahane. Also the fact that MS Dhoni himself contributed with the bat will give a sigh of relief to the Indian camp. Also the main point of discussion; i.e. Stuart Binny proved all his critics wrong by showing a strong performance with the bat. Although he didn’t get to do much with the ball, he should definitely be considered a fix to play the next game.
Indian bowlers didn’t do too bad themselves either, with ball as well as with the bat. Bhuvaneshwar Kumar, Mohammad Shami, Ishant Sharma all bowled their hearts out in the first innings of the English innings and backed up their batsmen when it was required, a sign that will give immense relief to the fans when they end up in pressure situation.
England on the other hand will be searching answers that they better find out before the next game. Their batsmen failed, the bowling was not up to the mark against a team that is considered weak in foreign condition not on one but on two different occasions. The bowling also lacked the killer instinct that they possessed in the 2011 series. The middle order crumbled to quite an embarrassing extent in the first innings, so much so that Stuart Broad and James Anderson had to the dirty work for them.
There are positives on the English side too, Joe Root has been absolutely brilliant in the past year or so for the host’s and his performance in the first test made sure that they stay out of trouble. Gary Balance and Sam Robson are two of the most talented batsmen English cricket has at the moment, their performance in the first test will also be a matter of joy in the English camp.
With 1 test match already done and 4 to go, the series is one of the most exciting competitions cricket fans are expecting to take place this season, and with the first test providing quite a bit of good old fashion cricket we can only wait and watch as the rest of series unfolds.