A superb bowling effort beats the fatigued Indian team on the first test at Lords with 3 more matches left in the series.
India’s hopes of drawing the test rested on the shoulders of “the special Wall” but it failed this time to stand firm. Dravid perished for very ordinary shot, he will be mighty disappointed when he watches his dismissal again. Anderson does bowl well and got reward for ordinary ball. Soon after reaching his yet another 50 in 4th innings, VVS Laxman too fell for poor shot when he tried to pull and Anderson again managed another wicket for a ball that would have never got a wicket another day.
Gambhir after playing so well against Swann fell to him in very next over after Laxman got dismissed. Swann trapped Gambhir LBW for gritty 22 from 56 balls. In came with huge round of applauds, the little master Sachin Tendulkar. Millions of people might be praying for him but truth is Sachin unless you see him driving in front foot through covers and defending with full stretch, you can sense he is not confident. Sachin showed it in 1st innings and gone even worse in 2nd innings. He batted with very defensive mindset which even got Ganguly to say “He is battling within himself not with ball. If he played his naturally game, he would have had 30 on the board by now”.
After struggling in the crease for long time, Sachin fell to Anderson for 12 from 68 balls. Anderson got Sachin one more time in his career after a catch been put down by Strauss in the same over. All the big 4 of Indian batting line-up is back in the pavilion where 3 of them got out for lapse in concentration after getting the start and another one lost his battle with himself.
Though looking at the pitch and the quality of Raina & Dhoni, India still had hope. Pitch is flat but Indians has put pressure on themselves by playing for time except Raina. Raina played superbly by utilizing every opportunity given to him for scoring and Dhoni slowly moved along nicely. India came out after tea for one final session of play, with 40 over’s to play and 5 wickets in hand. Though England have taken new ball, India needed only 10 over’s of wicket less play to put pressure back on England. But Dhoni completely surrendered himself by not playing his shots when offered and thus allowing bowlers to get top of him. Ball after ball getting so many beaten, finally Tremlett got him caught behind for 16(49).
Raina continued from his fine fifty but lost support at another end. Harbhajan fell for rash short when trying to pull a ball from off-stump and Praveen got cleaned by a superb delivery from Broad. Anderson produced a superb ball to produce a nick from Raina defense. Raina after playing so well got dismissed by Anderson for 78. Then it took just 4 balls for Broad to clean up Ishant and start the celebration for his team.
The fifth day play is sums up how much India is undercooked for the first test and reminded their mindset has never changed even after becoming No.1. England will be very happy to go 1-0 up in the series early and next text at Trent Bridge where you can see the ball swing more than it did at Lord’s and with injuries everywhere for Indian team, they can start dreaming for No. 1.