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Rediff.com  » Cricket » Varun's century lifts England

Varun's century lifts England

August 02, 2006 12:35 IST

Indian bowlers failed to make early breakthroughs as England under-19 skipper Varun Chopra slammed a gritty hundred to take the hosts to 279 for six on the first day of the second Test in Taunton, on Tuesday.

Down 1-0 in the three-Test series, England elected to bat first in the crucial match and Chopra led from the front for them with a fine knock of 123.

The skipper combined with Billy Godleman to put on 121 for the first wicket before Godleman was bowled by Shahbaz Nadeem for 40.

Nadeem was the pick of Indian bowlers yesterday, taking three wickets in 30 overs, which included 12 maidens. The left-armer conceded only 55 runs in his spell.

Meanwhile, Godleman's dismissal brought in Rory Hamilton Brown, who scored 12 before being run out.

It went horribly wrong for the hosts after that as Michael O'Shea was leg before wicket for nought off Nadeem. Adam Lyth (1) did not last long either and became Nadeem's third wicket, as the hosts slumped to 165 for four.

Wickets fell all around him but Chopra continued with his patient innings, which included 20 boundaries. But he also departed at 123 bowled by Abu Necheem Ahmed, leaving the hosts on a precarious 199 for five.

However, the Indians, who appeared to have gained an upperhand at this stage, were pushed to the back foot as Adil Rashid and Mark Nelson stemmed the rot by putting on 60 runs for the sixth wicket which took England's total beyond 250.

Nelson was unfortunate to depart hit wicket for 31, but Rashid remained firm and reached his half century. He was unbeaten on 59 (129 balls, 8 boundaries, 1 six) when stumps were drawn for the day.

Brief scores:

England under-19: 279 for 6 in 93 overs (Varun Chopra 123, Adil Rashid 59 not out, Shahbaz Nadeem 3-55)

 

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