Cricket

India v England, Day 4 at Vizag: England Won’t Back Down

Here is our wrap-up of the fourth day of the India v England Vizag test.

A wicket-heavy morning

India started the morning at 98/3, with a lead of 298, and their star batsman Kohli at the crease on 56 off just 70 balls. A brilliant morning of bowling from Broad (4-33) and Rashid (4-82), combined with a catch for the highlight reel from Ben Stokes took India from 98/3 to a disappointing 162/9 at the stroke of lunch. England had the hosts reeling, and though a 362 is still a sizable lead, it could have been a lot worse.

Shami and Jayant stay steady

With 9 wickets gone, England had one foot back in the pavilion ready to attempt a record 4th innings chase in a day and a half; but Shami and Jayant had other plans. The pair hunkered down and added 42 runs in their 9.3 overs together, including 5 fours and a six. While not necessarily a significant number of runs, test cricket is often about momentum, and extending the morning session gave India some momentum back.

 

England’s openers don’t give up

The opening pair of Haseeb and Cook just refused to give up, putting together just 75 runs in 50 overs to give themselves a chance at a draw. While much is expected from Captain Cook, with 30 test centuries and over 10,000 test runs, his partner 19-year old Haseeb has truly impressed in his debut test series. Haseeb had amassed 25 off 144 deliveries before it took a stunning off-break from Ashwin to sneak under his bat and dismiss him LBW.

The pendulum swings back

The Cook-Haseeb partnership had worn down the Indian bowlers, giving England back some momentum after we’d said it would need a miracle at the end of Day 3. After Ashwin picked up the wicket of Haseeb, Jadeja picked up the big wicket of Cook on the final delivery of the day. Though Cook did review, it was clearly a hail mary, with the ball hitting him plumb on the pad. For the second time in one day, India had gotten back momentum at the end of a session.

An unsuccessful day for DRS

Every day this test, DRS has played a part, and we believe it will continue to do so for the remainder of this series. Day 4 saw the highest number of reviews, 6 in one day, but 5 of those were struck down with only Ashwin using the review successfully while he was batting against Broad. Of the 17 reviews so far this test, only 4 (23.5%) have been upheld.

Verdict

Day 4 clearly belonged to England, from quick wickets to an outstanding opening partnership; however, needing another 318 on Day 5 with your openers back in the pavilion, continues to be a tough ask. The match still heavily leans in India’s favour, but England will have faith in Root, Ali, Stokes and Bairstow to take them to at least a draw.

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