Alastair Cook was dropped early but looked good after that © Getty Images
Alastair Cook was dropped early but looked good after that © Getty Images

By Shiamak Unwalla

Jul 27, 2014

England went to lunch at a decent score of 78 for one against India in the third Test at Southampton. For the first time in the series, the English batting looked solid in the face of some probing Indian pace bowling, despite losing a wicket before lunch. Alastair Cook looked very secure for his unbeaten 48 runs, and seemed on the way to finding his lost form.

India’s opening bowlers Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Mohammed Shami got some good movement off the pitch, but a complete lack of pace in the surface meant that neither bowler was able to trouble the batsmen too much. The introduction of Pankaj Singh, making his way for an injured Ishant Sharma, brought about an edge from Cook, but it was put down by Ravindra Jadeja at third slip.

During the course of his innings, England skipper Cook went past Kevin Pietersen in the list of all-time run-scorers for England. Pietersen played 104 Tests and 181 innings en route to scoring 8,181 runs. Cook’s 190 Tests and 106 innings have now brought him over 8,200 runs.

India drew first blood against England when Shami induced an edge from Sam Robson to Jadeja. Robson was looking good for his 26, hitting four boundaries in the innings. However, just as he was looking set for a big score, he played a short ball from Shami with hard hands, edging to Jadeja at third slip. It brought an end to the 55-run stand by the openers, their first half-century partnership together.

Earlier, England won the toss and chose to bat against India in the third Test at Southampton. India’s star of the second Test, Ishant Sharma, missed out due to injury. Rajasthan pacer Pankaj Singh made his Test debut for India four years after appearing in a One-Day International (ODI).

Brief scores:

England 78 for 1 (Alastair Cook 48*, Sam Robson 26; Mohammed Shami 1 for 29) vs India.

Full scorecard

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Complete coverage of India’s tour of England 2014

(Shiamak Unwalla is a reporter with Cricket Country. He is a self-confessed Sci-Fi geek and Cricket fanatic who likes to pass his free time by reading books, watching TV shows, and eating food. Sometimes all at the same time. You can follow him on twitter at @ShiamakUnwalla)