Left-hander Sam Curran justified his recall to the England side as he led the fightback on the opening day of the fourth Test after a disastrous start in Southampton.
Having elected to bat the home side were 57 for four and 86 for six as the ball moved around alarmingly before Curran and Moeen Ali shared a 79-run stand to stop the rot.
When Moeen eventually went for 40 in the 60th over top-edging a slog-sweep off Ravichandran Ashwin to square leg Curran continued the fight, reaching his second Test half-century in four innings.
He put on 63 with Stuart Broad (17) for the ninth wicket but was eventually last man out for 78 when trying to force the score along with last man James Anderson, but he had dragged England to 246.
India reached 19 without loss in reply after England’s bowlers failed to make them play at enough deliveries in the four overs possible before the close.
The tourists will have been disappointed not to press home their early advantage after their seamers found prodigious movement in the air to cause all kinds of problems for the batsmen.
England were fortunate to reach lunch at 57 for four as, having lost Keaton Jennings, Joe Root, Jonny Bairstow and Alastair Cook, wicketkeeper Rishabh Pant put down a difficult chance off Jos Buttler.
Buttler and Ben Stokes both departed in the first hour of the afternoon session to leave the hosts staring at more humiliation but left-handed duo Curran and Moeen launched the rearguard action.
Jasprit Bumrah finished with three for 46, with Ishant Sharma, Mohammed Shami and Ravichandran Ashwin all taking two apiece.
CLOSE: IND 19/0
India have bowled England out after the hosts won the toss and stand 227 runs behind with all first-innings wickets in hand at the end of the first day’s play. Join us on Friday morning for live coverage of day two and imminently, on these pages, for the day’s analysis and news from Scyld Berry, Paul Hayward, Nick Hoult and Tim Wigmore .
OVER 4: IND 19/0 (Dhawan 3*, Rahul 11*)
Bumble and Nasser would like Sam Curran to bowl it but Root sticks with Stuart Broad. The first ball is a tempter outside off-stump and Rahul plays it beautifully with soft hands, caressing through gully for four. Broad hoops one outside off that carries on swinging, takes Buttler on the ends of his fingers and rattles down for four byes. Broad, after a pedestrian opening over, gets his speed up to the mid 80s . Rahul gets away with one that he tries to flick through square leg that strikes the leading edge and pops through the covers for a single. Dhawan ends the day off the mark with an open-faced drive to third man for three. Poor start by England with the ball.
OVER 3: IND 7/0 (Dhawan 0*, Rahul 6*)
Anderson hangs a couple outside Rahul’s off-stump and Rahul does not need to play the first three. At last he changes line and Rahul responds with a forward defensive back up the pitch then takes a stride and drives handsomely for three through cover. One over to go.
OVER 2: IND 4/0 (Dhawan 0*, Rahul 3*)
Broad, not cock-a-hoop Curran, will share the new ball. He has four slips – Cook, Root, Stokes and Anderson – and Jennings under the lid. Broad squares Rahul up and hits him high on the right leg, too high. England appeal but it would have cleared the bails by three inches or more. Then, like Anderson, Broad’s line strays too wide for four balls and then delivers a properly ugly wide. Rahul leaves them all alone, sparing his bat before he squirts three down to third man off a controlled, thick edge. Stokes sprints it down to save one run.
OVER 1: IND 0/0 (Dhawan 0*, Rahul 0*)
Anderson, naturally, opens up for England. The sun dipping behind the far stand, the sun ray on Anderson’s chest only at the start of his run-up. He begins by setting the trap of outswingers to Dhawan, four of them from over the wicket, that the batsman leaves. The bowler decides to come round the wicket but gives no reason for the opener, who has altered his guard, to play at it. He hits the last, pushing it to point off an open face.
ENG 246 all out
Play will end at 6.30pm or just after when the last over commenced before 6.30pm ends. We’ll have about 15 minutes of India’s response. But for Curran, Moeen and Broad that could have been a humiliation. It’s still a relatively garbage score but gives them a glimmer of a chance.
Curran b Ashwin 78Went for the slog over cow corner on one knee, missed and the ball sat up and knocked back middle stump.
OVER 77.3: ENG 246/9 (Curran 78*, Anderson 0*)
Anderson gets away second ball when it creeps through low and scuttles under Pant. They run a bye. Curran attempts to use his feet to Ashwin but can only dig the first one out but then …
OVER 76: ENG 245/9 (Curran 78*, Anderson 0*)
Canny maiden from Bumrah, focusing for the last few balls on keeping Curran isolated at that end and giving Ashwin six balls at Anderson. Curran tried to hit out but couldn’t find the room to free his arms.
OVER 75: ENG 245/9 (Curran 78*, Anderson 0*)
Curran is moving all over his crease to take on Shami who bangs the first two in following him. The batsman has a dart at them but misses then Shami pitches up his slower one and Curran spanks it back over his head for a one-bounce four. He takes the single with two to go, tucking it off his hip to long leg. Anderson blocks the first, giving it the maker’s name, and doesn’t have to play at the last one that drifts down the legside.
Broad lbw b Bumrah 17 Pinned last ball of the over from round the wicket by Bumrah. He was propping forward and struck in front of middle and leg as the ball arrowed into the stumps. FOW 240/9
OVER 73.5: ENG 240/8 (Curran 73*, Broad 17*)
Extraordinary shot from Curran, who is gulled by a slower ball on off-stump, takes his bottom hand off when he realises and still whacks it over the bower’s head for two. A normal bounce would have taken it for four but it plugged in the grass 10 yards in from the fence when it landed. Never mind, next ball he murders through backward point, the best shot of the day, for four. Broad dibs a single to third man, Curran pushes a single mid-off and with one ball to go …
OVER 73: ENG 231/8 (Curran 65*, Broad 16*)
Kohli takes Ashwin off and brings Shami back. Curran shapes to drive, plays outside it and squirts it down to fine leg off the inside edge for a single. Time to duff Broad up and he manages to evade a couple of short ones then runs one down to third man off a full face for a single.
OVER 72: ENG 228/8 (Curran 63*, Broad 15*)
Fifty partnership comes up when Broad flicks two down to fine leg followed by a back foot punch through cover point for three. Lovely shot. Curran equals his Test best off the last ball of the over and pinches the strike by walking across his crease and tucking one off his hip over the stumps for one off Pandya.
OVER 71: ENG 221/8 (Curran 61*, Broad 10*)
Broad ends the over after five dot balls with a streaky four, edged sharply between keeper and slip. They all count and from 86 for six we have to be grateful for any mercies.
Broad lbw b AshwinPinned while down sweeping. Did he hit it? No bat. The ball pitched outside off-stump and would have hit his front pad outside the line … though it seemed to hit his back leg. Not out nonetheless.
OVER 70: ENG 217/8 (Curran 61*, Broad 6*)
Broad’s pads are more prolific than his bat so far and they warn him another four when he flicks at Pandya’s inswinger to the left-hander that tickles his ankle and dribbles down for four leg-byes. Then the willow does see action with a flighty flick that drops safe straight of midwicket and earns him two and racks up three off the middle down the ground.
Sam Curran’s find of the year for England this year, perhaps in the sport. Fantastic half century under acute pressure. Has shown up the pusillanimity of his highly reputed team mates
— Cricketwallah (@cricketwallah) August 30, 2018
OVER 69: ENG 206/8 (Curran 59*, Broad 1*)
Sam Curran brings up his second Test fifty in his fourth Test innings with a slog sweep off Ashwin over wide mid on for six. It posts England’s 200, too. He follows it with a wafty edge off a ball that caught him in two minds for two through second slip then flays a T20 slog between midwicket and mid on for four more off the toe of the bat.
OVER 67: ENG 194/8 (Curran 47*, Broad 1*)
No justice for Pant who concedes four more byes to take it to 22 for the innings so far, 20 of which should have been given as wides. Poor lad. Broad takes a leg bye when missing a flick with his bat then Curran, when Ishant maintains better control of his swing, throws the works at a square drive and lifts it off the outside edge over point for four.
OVER 66: ENG 185/8 (Curran 43*, Broad 1*)
Bumrah shapes an enormous wide down the legside that Curran, knocked off his feet as he tried to reach it, is bemused to see given as four byes. Neither he nor Bumrah had a hope in hell of getting that. Bumrah adjusts with one across the left-hander and he pops it down to third man for a single with a delicate drop of his bottom wrist.
For those wondering, like Michael Vaughan who the Tony that Boycott is referring to is, Michael Heseltine has the answer:
By the way Tony referred to by Geoffrey is his brother (he played for Ackworth for years).
As usual Geoffrey is right he would not have been out to a slog sweep or any other “getting out shot” ( in Geoffrey parlance).
It s good to see him back at the microphone and looking unfeasibly well.
Long may it continue.
I remember his brother Peter from round and about when we were young, Michael.
OVER 65: ENG 179/8 (Curran 42*, Broad 1*)
Rashid thought the ball was missing leg, doing too much, and he was right but he has no recourse to justice. In comes Broad, hot on his feet, and he inside-edges down to fine leg for a single. India target his pads and stumps rather than his throat.
Rashid lbw b Sharma 6 It’s only shaping one way from Ishant to the right-hander, booming banana inswing. Rashid attempts to turn it through midwicket and is struck on the pad. Up goes the finger and seeing that Root and Stokes have spent England’s reviews, Rashid cannot ask for a reprieve. FOW 177/8
OVER 64: ENG 175/7 (Curran 41*, Rashid 4*)
Talking of Jasprit, here he comes, back on to bowl, a walking advert for tubigrip bandages and plaster. He has both elbows encased in pink Frank from Shameless sheaths and his left hand strapped. Rashid manages to steer one that leaps at him into the offside for a single.
OVER 63: ENG 174/7 (Curran 41*, Rashid 3*)
Curran overtakes Moeen as England’s leading scorer with a square drive for a single. Ishant fiddles with his field for Rashid to such an extent that it takes an age to complete the over, even after Rashid moves off strike after only two balls with a leg glance for a single. Nasser Hussain reports that the over took longer than six minutes to complete. It’s a disgrace! Here’s Bumrah’s catch to dismiss Moeen as Pant threatened to trample all over him:
OVER 62: ENG 172/7 (Curran 40*, Rashid 2*)
Curran, though looking to score, is currently playing correctly against Ashwin, not chancing his arm or trying to force something with a slog. He settles for a single, pushed with an open face.
OVER 61: ENG 171/7 (Curran 39*, Rashid 2*)
Curran whips Sharma off his toes for a single and Rashid does the same but for two. Ishant’s hooping inswinger to the right-hander catches him on the pad, up they all go, but it was arcing down the legside.
OVER 60: ENG 168/7 (Curran 38*, Rashid 0*)
A vital partnership of 81 is broken when Moeen decided to go round the corner when he may have been better off hitting it straight. Ashwin demands two in two when he hits Curran on the knee roll padding up, the batsmen having crossed, but it was missing the wickets.
Moeen Ali c Bumrah b Ashwin 40Top-edged a slog sweep. Bumrah races in from square leg and managed to grab hold of it as he jumped and slid on his knees, watching the ball but also taking evasive action as Pant ran towards him. FOW 167/7
OVER 59: ENG 167/6 (Moeen 40*, Curran 37*)
A slower one from Sharma who has not touched the 90mph of Trent Bridge and Lord’s today is swatted through point for two by Curran before the bowler arrows one across the left-hander from off to leg and the ball flies down for four byes.
OVER 58: ENG 161/6 (Moeen 40*, Curran 35*)
Nice shot from Curran who rocks back and slaps a square cut off Ashwin through point for four. Next ball he also pivots on to his back foot and pulls through mid on for a single. His Test batting career so far: 24, 63, 40, 35* …
OVER 57: ENG 156/6 (Moeen 40*, Curran 30*)
Shami round the wicket to Moeen has him wafting at a drive. Shami has bowled brilliantly at times but he has had a tendency to lose his line to the left-handers and now slants one across Moeen that sails past him for four byes. On come the lights.
OVER 56: ENG 152/6 (Moeen 40*, Curran 30*)
Maiden for Ashwin who screamed in jubilation when he pinned Curran, almost laughing with sheer delight. Oh no. Bumble is doing his crowd shoutouts via the earpiece.
Curran lbw b AshwinClose but not out. It looked as though it was heading down the leg-side but it would have clipped the outside of leg-stump.
OVER 55: ENG 152/6 (Moeen 40*, Curran 30*)
Curran plays and misses at Shami, tempted to hang his bat outside off-stump. It misses by … yay much.
OVER 54: ENG 151/6 (Moeen 40*, Curran 29*)
No turn from Ashwin which may be why Moeen takes to the dancefloor and lofts a straight, high six back over the bowler’s head. What a gorgeous shot, straight from his one-day cupboard. The partnership is now 65.
OVER 53: ENG 144/6 (Moeen 34*, Curran 28*)
It’s very gloomy out there. Mohammed Shami, who has two for 38 from 13, pounds in to Moeen who leans inside the line and tickles a single and a two off his pads either side of a Curran French cut down to fine leg off a thick inside edge.
Sports stadium food so much better these days. At the Fourth England-India Test: Caribbean Jerk, Yorkshire Pud Wraps, Churros, Indian Kitchen, England Batsmen on Toast etc
— Paul Hayward (@_PaulHayward) August 30, 2018
OVER 52: ENG 140/6 (Moeen 31*, Curran 27*)
Ashwin resumes after tea – one eye on the over rate is required or Kohli risks a substantial fine. He rattles through the over, Moeen extends a defensive to push the ball down to long on for a single and Curran defends the rest.
A word from a correspondent
My old friend Michael Heseltine writes:
India played well in a strange and compelling first Test and had the worst of batting conditions at Lords but the last time out they humiliated England. They are a better cricket team than England and these are the reasons why in my humble opinion:
1 There is no sentimentality or sense of entitlement involved in India’s selection (would Cook get in their team?)
2 Their Captain has the full and undivided attention and respect of all his team and he is in charge. Does poor little Joe get this respect or backing from anyone?
3 India can bat in different circumstances, that is when it is required they can and do dig in for example Kohli and Pujara in the second innings of the third Test, when they batted England out of the game by taking 400 balls to get 181 (and India won by 200 runs)
Cheteshwar Pujara c Cook b Stokes 72 in 208 balls
Virat Kohli (c) lbw b Chris Woakes 103 in 197 balls
I know that Bairstow, Stokes and Woakes have tried to do this but it has all been too little too late…and the issue is that the England top order batting is as bad as it has EVER been, the batsmen individually aren’t but when they play for England they are asked to bat in unfamiliar positions and when a couple of wickets go down they as brittle as any batting order at Test level.
4 India can take their chances (they can catch). How many dropped catches do we have to witness by England? It is embarrassing.
5 India develop their players, they seem to improve as they get more experience in the team … England do not appear to have this knack, any improvement seems to be down to the individual and so is.
I think a radical rethink of the whole of the back room staff, selectors, coaches and team is in order…..there certainly isn’t anything to lose by doing this and who knows what ever is rotten in the set up might be thrown out with the bathwater?
Is it really an option to keep going with Jimmy, Broad and Cook ruling the roost, with a batting line up every test bowler in the world wants to bowl at?
I repeat India are better than England, I therefore predict a series win for India.
I can’t argue with any of that and the fillip of the last hour does not affect how deep in the hole England are.
Tea | ENG 139/6 (Moeen 30*, Curran 27*)
The defiance of Moeen and Curran cannot hide the fact that India are in the ascendancy.
Rob Bagchi will be back to take you to the close.
OVER 51: ENG 139/6 (Moeen 30*, Curran 27*)
Shami returns. Bumrah seemed slightly weary in that last over. Oh wow. Curran very nearly runs himself out. He needs a dive to beat the throw at the non-striker’s end. What a debacle that would have been.
It’s another accurate over that features an in-swinger that Curran does well to dig out. Four from it, taking Curran and Moeen to the 50 partnership too. They’ve fought hard.
OVER 50: ENG 135/6 (Moeen 28*, Curran 25*)
Ashwin stays accurate but the batsmen trade singles.
OVER 49: ENG 133/6 (Moeen 27*, Curran 24*)
Just a Moeen single. Bumrah slightly more wayward this over, spearing a couple down leg and through to Pant.
OVER 47: ENG 132/6 (Moeen 26*, Curran 24*)
Surprise in-swinger from Bumrah! That’s the ball that got rid of Jennings earlier today. Curran is equal to it. He jams the bat down in front of his pads and punches one to mid-off.
Bouncer to Moeen! It’s a great ball too, angling over the left-hander’s right shoulder from over the wicket, but England get six via a top edge. No luck for Bumrah this time.
OVER 46: ENG 124/6 (Moeen 20*, Curran 23*)
Curran nurdles a leg-side single. That’s the only run off the over.
OVER 45: ENG 124/6 (Moeen 20*, Curran 22*)
Bumrah finding bounce and lateral movement. It’s tough out there. A single each to the batsmen. They’re digging in.
OVER 44: ENG 122/6 (Moeen 19*, Curran 21*)
Ashwin maidens Curran now. He dropped one short, but also beat the youngster in the flight once as well.
OVER 41: ENG 120/6 (Moeen 18*, Curran 20*)
Bumrah is back and Moeen leaves four in a row before smashing one to the point boundary. The next ball beats the batsman comprehensively. But Moeen survives.
Ashwin’s on now.
OVER 40: ENG 116/6 (Moeen 14*, Curran 20*)
Hardik was exceptional at Trent Bridge but he starts this over by spearing short and wide to Curran. this time, the Surrey youngster punishes him before adding another boundary past mid-off after the bowler over-compensates.
It’s almost three in a row but for an athletic stop on the fence that saves two. Then Curran does get his third boundary. Hardik over-steps and is driven behind square for four more. A dot ends the over, which has travelled for 15 (FIFTEEN).
OVER 39: ENG 101/6 (Moeen 14*, Curran 6*)
Moeen carves Shami for a couple through backward point and then edges a less authentic boundary to third man. One hundred up for England. Moeen celebrates with a leave.
Here is a look at the post-lunch wicket of Stokes.
OVER 38: ENG 95/6 (Moeen 8*, Curran 6*)
Hardik returns and serves up a short, wide one. Curran cannot capitalise. He mistimes to cover, but then check-drives three past extra.
Kohli adds another slip for Moeen, who pushes forward with soft hands to pick up three more to third man.
OVER 37: ENG 89/6 (Moeen 5*, Curran 3*)
Moeen leaves Shami on length…and is very nearly cleaned up. India keep the pressure on with another maiden.
Meanwhile, some cold, hard perspective.
OVER 36: ENG 89/6 (Moeen 5*, Curran 3*)
A couple more to Curran, through cover point as he frees his arms. Two hours of swashbuckling counter-attack would be useful for the hosts. Ishant comes back well. Drinks.
OVER 35: ENG 87/6 (Moeen 5*, Curran 1*)
Sam Curran is away first ball. Moeen ducks under a bouncer. England are struggling.
Stokes lbw b Shami 23. Lovely bowling from Shami. He traps Stokes on the crease with a ball that zips back into the left-hander and surprises Stokes. The review is in vain. FOW 86/6
OVER 34: ENG 85/5 (Stokes 23*, Moeen 4*)
Proactive batting from Stokes. He’s miles out of his crease to negate the movement that out-ducking Ishant is getting. He pushes a single into the covers.
Moeen dabs another towards deep backward square.
Meanwhile at Colwyn Bay…
…Ian Bell moves onto 118 not out.
OVER 33: ENG 83/5 (Stokes 22*, Moeen 3*)
It’s still wobbling, before and after the bat, and Pant is having to keep on his toes behind the stumps for India. Stokes pings a straight drive and Shami is stung when he sticks out a mitt on his follow-through.
Stokes adds one to mid-on to end the over, becoming England’s top-scorer. He has 22. Gulp.
OVER 32: ENG 82/5 (Stokes 21*, Moeen 3*)
A maiden to Moeen from Ishant. Another very good one.
OVER 31: ENG 82/5 (Stokes 21*, Moeen 3*)
Runs! Moeen prods Shami down towards third man for three. He was in control and the ball went straight down. Stokes then swings a boundary through mid-wicket – and through Bumrah, who is unceremoniously moved by Kohli.
Four byes, which could easily have been five wides, follow. Pant was beaten outside off by some post-bat movement. Shami comes back with a pearler to beat Stokes.
OVER 30: ENG 71/5 (Stokes 17*, Moeen 0*)
This is the first time in 45 Tests under Virat Kohli’s captaincy that India have not made a change in their line-up. The tourists certainly look settled and assured. Accurate over from Ishant, who draws an edge off the final delivery. Stokes plays it really well though, with soft hands. The ball bounces into the cordon.
OVER 29: ENG 71/5 (Stokes 17*, Moeen 0*)
Hello everyone. Charlie here for the remainder of the afternoon session.
Pant fails to gather an in-swinger from Shami to Moeen, and a leg-side bye brings Stokes on strike. Shami angles three across the all-rounder before bringing one back. Stokes is equal to it and nudges a single. Moeen is beaten outside off to end the over.
Only 30 of the 145 balls in the morning session did not swing and/or seam by a ‘large’ amount (1.00°+ swing & 0.75°+ seam). England’s top order is struggling in this series but India’s bowlers have expertly exploited exceptionally difficult conditions for batting. #EngvInd pic.twitter.com/b8BGEMzR2K
— Freddie Wilde (@fwildecricket) August 30, 2018
OVER 28: ENG 69/5 (Stokes 16*, Moeen 0*)
Ashwin’s spell ends after one over as Moeen’s entrance encourages Kohli to bring Ishant back. But he doesn’t get a chance to bowl at him as Stokes plays out a maiden, helped by a wide line from over the wicket that allows him to leave four. Charlie Morgan will be taking over from now until tea. Bye!
OVER 27: ENG 69/5 (Stokes 16*, Moeen 0*)
This was a shockingly loose shot from Buttler. We know the Pietersenesque ‘that’s the way he plays’ excuse won’t wash because he didn’t bat like that at Lord’s against Pakistan or at Trent Bridge in the last Test. Moeen ducks under Shami’s bouncer, gets in line to defend a quick one and is then pinned on the back leg off an inside edge as he tried to block the last.
Buttler c Kohli b Shami 21Having creamed a drive down the ground for four two balls earlier, he tries to do the same to one that started closer to him and hence took a thick edge. Fine, sharp catch at third slip. FOW 69/5
OVER 26: ENG 65/4 (Stokes 16*, Buttler 17*)
He has recovered from the adductor injury and there are no signs of stiffness or pain as he tries to tie Stokes up and succeeds for five balls until Stokes picks his arm ball and swipes a front-foot drive through mid-on for four.
OVER 25: ENG 61/4 (Stokes 12*, Buttler 17*)
Mohammed Shami resumes after lunch and is straight into the mid 80s to the right-handed Buttler. The first three pitch on middle and off before swinging away. Buttler leaves them. The fourth is a facsimile but bounces more as Buttler withdraws the bat in some haste. Shami, who hasn’t made him play, goes wider, Buttler plays across the line aiming for midwicket and the ball flies off the leading edge through gully for four. Ashwin is coming on for his first bowl at the other end.
LUNCH: ENG 57/4 (Stokes 12*, Buttler 13*)
England’s shaky, flaky top four have suffered all summer and did so again this morning after Root won the toss and decided to bat first. But while there will be time , so much time, for condemnation, let’s not stint on the praise for Jasprit Bumrah and Ishant Sharma in particular who bowled magnificently for the first hour and were a constant threat to left- and right-hander alike. For all their application at Trent Bridge, Buttler and Stokes could not extract England from the hole of the top four’s making. They need to here because there are buckets of runs in the pitch and if England don’t take them, Virat will.
OVER 24: ENG 57/4 (Stokes 12*, Buttler 13*)
Buttler and Stokes survive until lunch, Buttler wisely watching the last five balls of the session from the non-striker’s after flicking a single through midwicket off the first. Stokes defends and leaves four of them well but is skelped on the thigh pad by one that pitches outside leg and follows him. Test cricket is marvellous.
OVER 23: ENG 56/4 (Stokes 12*, Buttler 12*)
Technical chance when Buttler, trying to leave, can’t get his bat out of the way quick enough and it hits the toe of the bat as he withdraws it. The deflection, entirely unexpected by Pant who was moving forward to pouch it routinely, scuds the ball low to the keeper’s right at ankle height. He throws his hands down hurriedly but cannot get it to stick in the right glove. Shami, who reaches 89mph, is gtting extravagant late movement but Stokes devours an opportunity on his pads, cuffing it round the corner for two.
OVER 22: ENG 53/4 (Stokes 10*, Buttler 11*)
Bumrah replaces Pandya and resumes with a maiden at Stokes who is drawn into two false shots as he played down the wrong line with his forward defensive. The old term ‘false shot’ doesn’t really apply anymore. With a bowler who can move it both ways and disguise it and with the ball moving so late it’s hard to judge everything.
OVER 21: ENG 53/4 (Stokes 10*, Buttler 11*)
Shami keeps straying on to Stokes’ leg stump and the batsman milks him for two but then it all clicks for the bowler who tests the left-hander with a couple of wobbling brutes. Stokes prods off the front foot at the first which zips away from him then leaves the other which sets off towards first slip then hoops once past the bat and beats the keeper on his right side! Bye.
OVER 20: ENG 50/4 (Stokes 8*, Buttler 11*)
Buttler carries on where he left off, creaming a static-footed drive past extra for four off Pandya then following it with another boundary to bring up the fifty with a sweet leg glance.
OVER 19: ENG 42/4 (Stokes 7*, Buttler 3*)
Pant and Shami think they may have strangled Stokes and consider a review because there was certainly a sound when the ball went through to the keeper past Stokes’ hip. But Kohli vetoes the idea, wisely as he didn’t hit it. Shami can’t find his range, lands another on leg stump and Stokes twists it between square- and fine leg for two.
Some vinegar with that? He’s right, though.
If Cook fails just 27 more times, his place will probably come under scrutiny.
— George Dobell (@GeorgeDobell1) August 30, 2018
There is a sense from players of the past 15 years that Cook can play on as long as he’s hungry to play on. As if form and scores are rather grubby considerations. It’s the definition of entitlement.
OVER 18: ENG 40/4 (Stokes 7*, Buttler 3*)
Jos Buttler gets off the mark with a squirty drive that brings him three through third man. Looking back at Cook’s shot … it was pretty dreadful in truth. Ghosts of 1936-37, when GO Allen’s England squandered a 2-0 lead to lose the Ashes haunt Gubby Root’s men now.
Cook c Kohli b Pandya 17 He patently doesn’t like Pandya’s comparative lack of pace because it impels him to apply some force to his shots to make runs. Trying to dab one through third man he steers it off the top edge to third slip who takes it sharply to his right while diving to his left. Strange dismissal on a dismal morning for England. FOW 36/4
OVER 17: ENG 36/3 (Cook 17*, Stokes 6*)
Bumrah takes a breather and Mohammed Shami, who bagged Stokes in the first innings at Trent Bridge, comes into the attack. He starts accurately at first then pushes one across and Stokes punches it through cover for two.
OVER 16: ENG 34/3 (Cook 17*, Stokes 4*)
Nice shot from Stokes, probably the easiest of the morning, but well-dispatched to the midwicket boundary when Pandya pitches on middle. The bowler adjusts by angling a couple across Stokes, trying to lure him to have a tickle, but he won’t be tempted. As he proved in the last Test in the second innings, Stokes has the zeal of the convert when he chooses to play one of his fastidiously, self-restrained knocks.
OVER 15: ENG 29/3 (Cook 17*, Stokes 0*)
Maiden for Bumrah to Cook who is never allowed to settle. Looks as though he is enjoying the challenge, though, which bears out those who know him well who say his appetite is undiminished.
OVER 14: ENG 29/3 (Cook 17*, Stokes 0*)
Pandya replaces Ishant, Cook works him off his pads for a single and Stokes defends three.
OVER 13: ENG 28/3 (Cook 16*, Stokes 0*)
Ahmedabad’s Bumrah has got this Duke ball speaking Gujarati. Bairstow takes a single to cover then Cook survives a grilling from the one that comes in to the left hander which he jabs between bat and pad, pad first I think, into the legside. Would have been too high for leg-before. Cook gets off strike with a whip to long leg for a single then Bumrah does Bairstow with a two-card trick, one that climbs on him, which he leaves and one an inch or two closer that he cannot confidently let go. England are in dead shtukh.
Bairstow c Pant b Bumrah 6 Held its line outside off-stump and Bairstow, playing an honest forward defensive, feathered it through to the keeper. The angle of delivery, where it pitches and then it straighteningpersuades right-handers to play just inside the line. FOW 28/3
OVER 12: ENG 26/2 (Cook 15*, Bairstow 5*)
Ishant, beginning to tire and 5mph down on pace, almost entices Cook to slice a drive to backward point with a wobbling delivery hung outside off-stump for precisely that shot but it bounces to the right and juts short of the diving fielder. Cook survives the hour and takes drinks.
OVER 11: ENG 25/2 (Cook 15*, Bairstow 4*)
Cook exploits the fullness when Bumrah strains for the yorker to squeeze a drive through mid on for a single then Bairstow leans into a drive that is more sweetly timed through the covers and they hare three. Bumrah ends the over with a snorter that shapes in and seams away from round the wicket to Cook who had just dug out another attempted yorker.
OVER 10: ENG 21/2 (Cook 14*, Bairstow 1*)
As Michaels Atherton and Holding point out, Bairstow’s set-up, exposing all three of his stumps to open up the offside, leaves him vulnerable to any late movement and cuts off his options of cuffing the ball through the legside for singles. When Sharma pitches outside off and seams it back in, Bairstow is almost sliced in two as the ball fizzes an inch or two above the off-bail.
OVER 9: ENG 21/2 (Cook 14*, Bairstow 1*)
Bumrah comes round the wicket to Cook but doesn’t look so comfortable. He overpitches for the first time and Cook threads an open-faced drive through third man for four. The bowler responds with a jaffa that pitches on middle and straightens menacingly on Cook, searing past his edge.
OVER 8: ENG 17/2 (Cook 10*, Bairstow 1*)
Enter Bairstow, now a specialist batsman, to face the ordeal of a ball that Bumrah and Ishant are making sing the Hallelujah Chorus. When Ishant pinned Root he let out a throaty bellow that dislodged the Hawfinches from the treetops in the New Forest. Bairstow, his feet well outside leg-stump in his stance, gets off the mark with an initially defensive push through mid on.
Root lbw b Sharma 4Out, plumb. Done by the length he falls over to the offside and is trapped in front of leg and middle. FOW 15/2
OVER 7: ENG 15/1 (Cook 9*, Root 4*)
Not sure this pitch is as dry as the experts said because Bumrah’s first ball climbs on Root who wears it on his hip and takes a leg-bye. The hitch in Bumrah’s action is very pleasing to watch, that staccato wind-up is more pronounced than Brett Lee. Cook turns four off his pads when Bumrah gets his line wrong.
OVER 6: ENG 10/1 (Cook 5*, Root 4*)
India cannot be faulted for their accuracy and lengths this morning. They’re throwing the kitchen sink at Cook and Root. Ishant mixes up his impeccable outswing line with a yorker that Cook has to dig out while hopping. He played that well and then, when Ishant finally strays, climbs in to a wide one and square drives it crisply for four. Here’s a proper shot of the Jennings dismissal:
OVER 5: ENG 6/1 (Cook 1*, Root 4*)
Root would have been out on review but for Bumrah overstepping by an inch but he’s a serial offender and does not deserve our sympathy. Root was plumb, playing outside the line. So everything the umpire could have got wrong, he did get wrong. Look at this:
OVER 4: ENG 3/1 (Cook 1*, Root 2*)
Ishant Sharma has found his groove and is working it relentlessly, round the wicket to Cook, pitching off and middle and taking it away from the left-hander. Cook plays or leaves watchfully. Wonder if he could be a foot or so further out of his crease?
OVER 3: ENG 3/1 (Cook 1*, Root 2*)
Root is discomfitted Bumrah’s angle of attack. Having developed an inswinger to the left-hander out of nowhere, the England captain understandably plays him gingerly to begin with. He gets off the mark with two flicked through midwicket. Here’s how Bumrah set Jennings up.
Jennings lbw b Bumrah 0 Blimey. Prodigious swing from Bumrah, swinging in after Jennings leaves, thinking it would continue its path towards first slip. It boomerangs in, pins him, not playing a shot, just above the left knee. A fatal misjudgment but a special delivery. Here we go again. FOW 1/1
OVER 2: ENG 1/0 (Cook 1*, Jennings 0* )
Where Jasprit came over the wicket to the two left-handers, Ishant comes round straightaway to Cook and delivers a snorter second ball that pitches off and middle and swings away. Cook has a nibble at it but mercifully misses it. Perhaps that was Cook’s rangefinder, enabling him to judge Ishant’s shape and where his off-stump is, because he cleverly leaves the next four as they arc past his bat. Ishant then has to adjust and tails one into middle and Cook plays it with a closed bat face down the pitch.
OVER 1: ENG 1/0 (Cook 1*, Jennings 0* )
Bumrah begins with a quick one slanted across Cook at 87mph that hits the seam and veers away from the batsman’s edge as he followed it. Cook prefers the one on his hip and simply tucks it round the corner to get off the mark. Long leg is attacked by a wasp to the amusement of Messrs Bumble and Sir Iron. I hate wasps. Do they have any friends? The seam on the Duke’s ball is a joy to Bumrah who gets a couple to move away from Jennings who covers his off-stump and lets them by. India, unchanged for the first time in 45 Tests, will give Ishant Sharma the opportunity to share the new ball.
Out come the fielders
Followed by the batsmen, Cook and Jennings. Jasprit Bumrah will open the bowling
Are paying tribute to the 23 Hants cricketers who lost their lives in the First World War on the 100th anniversary of the end of the conflict.
Michael Holding thinks the India seamers will find a friend in the hard pitch with a tinge of green for the first session but that it will be fine for batting thereafter.
England will bat first – India are unchanged
That’s the right call. Four tosses won out of four for Root this series. Look how many times Ricky Ponting won them all in the series. Jammy tosser.
India S Dhawan, KL Rahul, CA Pujara, V Kohli (capt), AM Rahane, HH Pandya, RR Pant (wkt), R Ashwin, Mohammed Shami, I Sharma, JJ Bumrah.
The captains are coming out for the toss. England have already named their side so that’s one fewer thing we have to discover. England AN Cook, KK Jennings, JE Root (capt), JM Bairstow, BA Stokes, JC Buttler (w/k), Moeen Ali, SM Curran, AU Rashid, SCJ Broad, JM Anderson.
England have a bloke batting at three who likes to bat four, a bloke batting four who likes to bat five, a bloke batting five who likes to bat six, a bloke batting six who was picked as a specialist no 7 and a no 7 who scored 219 last week batting at no 3 https://t.co/MIsBZOGFKB
— Nick Hoult (@NHoultCricket) August 29, 2018
Welcome to coverage of the fourth Test
Over the past 15 years England have played only seven home five-Test series but six of them, including this magnificently enthralling, topsy-turvy delight, have been vibrant and alive, with all three results possible after three Tests bar the 2013 Ashes which was delightful in myriad other ways, most of them because Alastair Cook’s side were beating (and infuriating) Australia.
If we are to have seven-Test summers, then far more of them in the future should comprise five matches – South Africa and Pakistan should join Australia and India with the privilege, possibly New Zealand, too, in time – because it’s the best way to develop and sustain drama over the summer, allowing us to get to know all of the protagonists as their skill and character are tested and revealed,
Today, in this third and possibly final Test at the Rose Bowl, England, so often at their best at home after an unexpected defeat, will try to win the series without their best batsman from Lord’s and best bowler from Trent Bridge, Chris Woakes. Moeen, who has made two centuries in 10 Tests against India and taken 29 wickets, is back after six Tests out and Sam Curran, who contributed so decisively with bat and ball at Edgbaston returns.
Most of the focus will be on Jonny Bairstow’s elevation to No 4 in the order and his fracture-driven loss of the gloves for this Test. Michael Vaughan thinks that Bairstow has the technique if not yet the tempo to be a Test No 3 and would quickly discover the more orthodox approach and discipline the position requires if England are to become a major, consistently competitive Test force once again. I’m not so sure. I think he’s a dasher, a man of constant motion who needs the thrill of scoring to find his equilibrium. But I’m prepared to be convinced and would be very happy to be proved wrong.
As for India, the class with the bat that has been so evident this past couple of years, was allied to diligence and doggedness in Nottingham. Their bowling attack is perfect for England so if, as they did at Trent Bridge, Virat Kohli’s fellow top-order players can support their captain with pluck, good judgment and placement, they should take the series to the Oval, all-square.
Joe Root has won all three tosses so far and if he does so again here, he has to have the stomach to bat. It’s all very well mugging India at Lord’s when it’s damp and dark, but putting them in at Trent Bridge was a daft mistake. Of the 12 times England have called correctly under Alastair Cook and Root and inserted the opposition, they have lost seven Tests and won only four. With James Anderson in the side it is always tempting to do so with only the slightest encouragement from the clouds but now is the time for the batsmen to show their fortitude and banish this flakiness that has dogged them for so long
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