Home > News >

India vs England 2014 1st Test, Lunch Day 1: Bulletin from Trent Bridge

Murali Vijay remained unbeaten on 55 © AFP
Murali Vijay remained unbeaten on 55 © AFP

By Arunabha Sengupta

Nottingham: Jul 9, 2014

If seizing initiative is of major importance in a major series, Indian opener Murali Vijay did it in the very first over. England’s pace spearhead James Anderson’s first two balls passed by without raising concerns or incitement. And the next three sped to the fence. Two were steered to third-man, the third flicked beautifully, almost a la Laxman. The first over brought forth 12 runs, with no speed, bounce or movement to show for the expense.

Stuart Broad was a bit more probing, but with little more return. The batsmen were not bothered. This was a wicket where the best course of action was to buzz at the patience of the batsman like an irritating fly until he decided to swat in irritation.

Anderson was taken for boundaries aplenty, most of them through third man, often off defensive looking steers. Dhawan drove him for three, Joe Root’s athletic chase saving the extra run. The bowler looked gingerly. The short leg disappeared in the sixth over. Footholds were scowled at. Even the short balls were avoided with plenty of time. The wicket was too sloth to hurry batsmen.

It resembled one of those days at Trent Bridge described by Neville Cardus, when the sun smiled down and the score was always 320 for one.

Anderson changed to round the wicket for Shikhar Dhawan. The ball was not moving on its own, so guile entered the scenario. Angles were created, but Dhawan looked comfortable enough, flicking a couple to square leg.

And then the patient perseverance of Anderson paid off. Dhawan prodded defensively outside the off stump, and Matt Prior of uncertain health, a question mark over his selection till this very morning, swooped down to his left and pouched it in front of the slips. It was Anderson’s 50th wicket at Trent Bridge. The score stood at 33 for one after seven overs.

It looked like a minor hiccup. Cheteshwar Pujara started with careful scrutiny, not ready to trust the benign benevolence of the wicket. His head was bent down on top of the balls, sniffing for anything suspicious. During the initial phase, he played only when required to.

Anderson, pepped up by the wicket, ran in with somewhat more spring in his step. But Vijay steered him for four yet again. Slips were added, four of them, waiting for one of Vijay’s steers to go awry. The batsman nonchalantly drove him through the covers.

And when Anderson pitched short, Pujara brought out his cheeky doppelganger from beneath the sheath of circumspection, cutting over the slips to the fine thirdman fence. Anderson ended his first spell at 7-0-40-1.

Ben Stokes and Liam Plunkett ran in energetically, but did not come close to rush or trouble the batsmen. Balls were played away from the body with enough ease to conjure up the atmosphere of Nagpur in Nottingham. Vijay on drove both Stokes and Plunkett, between the stumps and mid-on, each time elegant and classy. Pujara cut Stokes for four and unleashed a glorious cover drive off Plunkett. In desperation, Plunkett bounced Pujara from round the wicket. But the pace was too slow to hurry the batsmen.

Moeen Ali was introduced in the 23rd over, with the score 79 for one, and was greeted with applause resembling relief rather than hope. But the Indians had no plans to let him settle. Pujara stepped out and launched him over mid-wicket.

When Stokes pitched short Vijay square-cut him for four. Either his back-foot game has improved or the wicket in Trent Bridge has been specially prepared to pamper him. The next delivery was pitched up, and the resulting cover drivewas fluent, and raced away to take him to his half century in 68 balls, studded with 11 fours.

When Plunkett changed over to the Pavilion end, Pujara guided him past gully for four to bring up the Indian hundred at almost a run a minute. The bowler responded by bouncing from round the wicket and it reached Prior on the second bounce. The batsman perhaps did not like it, and forced the next one past cover for four.

Just before lunch Pujara allowed a couple of bouncers to strike him on the body. But, the action spoke more of English desperation than Indian concern. The score at lunch read 106 for one, Vijay 55, Pujara 38. The fortuitous flip of the coin had been utilised to near maximum.

India has gone in with an inexperienced line up. MS Dhoni is slotted at No 6, Ravinder Jadeja and debutant Stuart Binny constituting the lower middle order. It is of paramount importance for the top order batsmen to lay a foundation. The initial work cannot be faulted.

Catch Live Blog of the match here

Catch Live score and ball-by-ball commentary of Day One of India vs England 1st Test here

(Arunabha Sengupta is a cricket historian and Chief Cricket Writer at CricketCountry.He writes about the history and the romance of the game, punctuated often by opinions about modern day cricket, while his post-graduate degree in statistics peeps through in occasional analytical pieces. The author of three novels, he can be followed on Twitter at http://twitter.com/senantix)

South Africa tour of Sri Lanka, 2014

Jul 24, 2014 (10:00 IST)   at Colombo

India tour of England 2014

Jul 27, 2014 (15:30 IST)   at Southampton

Pakistan tour of Sri Lanka, 2014

Aug 6, 2014 (10:00 IST)   at Galle

India tour of England 2014

Aug 7, 2014 (15:30 IST)   at Manchester

South Africa in Zimbabwe, 2014

Aug 9, 2014 (13:30 IST)   at Harare

More

Afghanistan tour of Zimbabwe, 2014

Jul 24, 2014  at Bulawayo

Afghanistan won by 100 runs

Afghanistan tour of Zimbabwe, 2014

Jul 22, 2014  at Bulawayo

Afghanistan won by 2 wkts

Afghanistan tour of Zimbabwe, 2014

Jul 20, 2014  at Bulawayo

Zimbabwe won by 8 wkts

Afghanistan tour of Zimbabwe, 2014

Jul 18, 2014  at Bulawayo

Zimbabwe won by 6 wkts

India tour of England 2014

Jul 17, 2014  at London

India won by 95 runs

Photos

India, England training session for 3rd Test

Videos

Gary Ballance looks ahead to third Test

MS Dhoni will be crucial in 3rd Test against England at Southampton

Virat Kohli has shown he learns from his mistakes; matter of time before he gets back to form

India vs England 2014, 3rd Test at Southampton: Should Gautam Gambhir play ahead of Shikhar Dhawan?

Sri Lanka vs South Africa 2nd Test Day 3 Live Cricket Score: Hashim Amla, Imran Tahir frustrate Lankans

5 things you need to know about Gulabrai Ramchand

England England vs India England vs India 2014 India India tour of England 2014 India vs England India vs England 2014 Ishant Sharma South Africa South Africa tour of Sri Lanka 2014 South Africa vs Sri Lanka South Africa vs Sri Lanka 2014 Sri Lanka Sri Lanka vs South Africa Sri Lanka vs South Africa 2014

David Gower wanted to be game ranger in Africa

India A beat South Africa A by 1 wicket in a thriller

India tour of England 2014: MS Dhoni’s men aim to take unassailable lead in Test series

Hashim Amla’s defiant century for South Africa keeps Sri Lanka in check at Tea on Day 3 off 2nd Test

India tour of England 2014: Jos Buttler aims for a Kevin Pietersen-like innings on Test debut

MS Dhoni will be crucial in 3rd Test against England at Southampton

Virat Kohli has shown he learns from his mistakes; matter of time before he gets back to form

India vs England 2014, 3rd Test at Southampton: Should Gautam Gambhir play ahead of Shikhar Dhawan?

5 things you need to know about Gulabrai Ramchand

Luke Wright registers 4th highest individual score in T20 history

Fan of the Day

Fan Cricket

Fan Cricket

11 Posts | 2 Fans

Brazil vs Netherlands, 3rd place Fifa World Cup 2014 match Video Highlights

David Gower wanted to be game ranger in Africa

New imaging technology helps doctor’s diagnose gut problems

Apple reportedly acquires book recommendation service BookLamp

Greg Chappell speaks about Australia A and National Performance Squad

Shah Rukh should play Dhyan Chand on screen: Abhishek Bachchan

Sanjay Leela Bhansali: It is impossible to imagine anyone but Priyanka playing Mary Kom

After Salman Khan, Akshay Kumar sings for his film Entertainment – watch video!

At least 76 bodies pulled from Gaza rubble in truce: Medics

New study finds a novel repair for muscle damage — stem cells

Panasonic to launch Eluga smartphones in India on July 30

Also on cricketcountry.com

Play Fantasy Cricket & Win

Cash Daily! Click here