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PICS: India vs England, 2nd Test, Day 1

Last updated on: February 13, 2021 17:33 IST
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Images from Day 1 of the second Test between India and England, at the M A Chidambaram stadium, in Chennai. 

Rohit Sharma celebrates after getting to 150 on Saturday, Day 1 of the second Test against England, at the M A Chidambaram stadium, in Chennai.

IMAGE: Rohit Sharma celebrates after getting to 150 on Saturday, Day 1 of the second Test against England, at the M A Chidambaram stadium, in Chennai. Photograph: BCCI

Rohit Sharma's seventh Test century rallied India after a top-order collapse and helped them finish Day 1 in the second Test against England on 300 for 6, at the M A Chidambaram stadium, in Chennai, on Saturday.

 

At 86-3 in the morning session, India looked to have thrown away any chance of batting themselves into a strong position on a pitch where runs are going to be harder to come by as the match progresses, before Rohit dragged thems back into the contest by smashing 161 and forging a vital partnership with Ajinkya Rahane (67).

At close of play on Day 1, Rishabh Pant was unbeaten on 33 in the company of debutant Axar Patel (5).

England's players celebrate the wicket of Rohit Sharma

IMAGE: England's players celebrate the wicket of Rohit Sharma. Photograph: BCCI

Just when it looked as if India would take the honours in the third session, Jack Leach gave England the much-needed breakthrough with the big wicket of Rohit.

The opener swept the ball uppishly, straight into the hands of Moeen at deep square leg and perished after a superb innings of 161 from 231 balls, inclusive of 18 fours and two sixes.

Rohit had rallied India in a 162-run stand for the fourth wicket with Rahane.

It was a timely wicket for England as the Mumbai batsman threatened to push India towards a huge first innings total.

Moeen then struck in the next over with the wicket of Rahane, who went for the sweep, but missed it completely and was bowled for 67.

Ajinkya Rahane celebrates after scoring 50.

IMAGE: Ajinkya Rahane celebrates after scoring 50. Photograph: BCCI

India were reduced to 249/5 in the 76th over.

Joe Root then struck at the fag end of the day with the wicket of Ravichandran Ashwin, having him caught off an inside edge at short leg by Pope for 13.

Ashwin chipped down the track and tried to defend but only managed to block it off an inside edge and offer a simple catch to Pope. 

Session 1:

Rohit Sharma celebrates after scoring 50 during Day 1

IMAGE: India opener Rohit Sharma celebrates after scoring 50 in the morning session. Photograph: BCCI

A superb half-century by Rohit Sharma stood out amidst the gloom in the morning session as India were reduced to 106 for 3 in 26 overs at lunch.

The opener hit 13 boundaries and one six before going into the break unbeaten on 80 off 78 balls, after the fall of opener Shubman Gill, Cheteshwar Pujara and skipper Virat Kohli.

Giving him company at the break was vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane, on 5.

England's players celebrate the dismissal of Shubman Gill

IMAGE: Ollie Stone gets a high-five from his England teammates after dismissing Shubman Gill. Photograph: BCCI

Pujara, who scored a 58-ball 21, and Rohit were involved in a 85-run partnership for the second wicket after the exit of Gill (0).

Kohli too failed to open his account.

Ollie Stone, playing in just his second Test, was brought into the attack in only the second over of the match and he needed just three deliveries to provide England the early breakthrough.

Jack Leach is congratulated by his England teammates after dismissing Cheteshwar Pujara

IMAGE: Jack Leach is congratulated by his England teammates after dismissing Cheteshwar Pujara Photograph: BCCI

Gill defended the first two deliveries before shouldering arms to the next. The young opener offered no stroke and was struck in line. After a chat with Rohit, his partner, he decided not to review it.

A wicket maiden for Stone gave England the perfect start.

Shortly after Rohit completed his 50 off only 47 balls, Leach gave England their second success of the morning, with the wicket of Pujara (21) in the 21st over.

The spinner got the ball to turn sharply off the puff of dust and Pujara, who looked to defend, played inside the line, edged and was caught at slips by Ben Stokes.

Virat Kohli is bowled by Moeen Ali

IMAGE: Virat Kohli is bowled by Moeen Ali. Photograph: BCCI

Then came the big of Virat Kohli. India’s captain was back in the dressing room without scoring after facing just five deliveries.

Moeen Ali produced a beauty to have the star batsman bowled for a duck.

Kohli went to drive Moeen against the spin on the off-side but was beaten by the sharp, turning delivery.

Rohit Sharma plays the sweep shot

IMAGE: Rohit Sharma plays the sweep shot. Photograph: BCCI

Two wickets in the space of seven deliveries and India were reduced to 86 for 3 in the 22nd over.

However, Rohit mixed caution with aggression to see India through to lunch without any further hiccups.

The Mumbai batsman looked comfortable against pace and spin on a track that is already aiding spin.

Moeen (1/32), Stone (1/14) and Leach (1/23) took a wicket each for England.

India made three changes to their playing eleven. Left-arm spin bowling all-rounder Axar Patel was handed his Test debut while pacer Jasprit Bumrah was rested.

The in-form Mohammed Siraj returned to the side as did left-arm wrist spinner Kuldeep Yadav, who replaced Washington Sundar. Yadav will play his first game in two years.

Session 2:

Rohit Sharma celebrates after completing his century after lunch on Saturday, Day 1 of the second Test against England

IMAGE: Rohit Sharma waves to the stands after completing his century after lunch. Photograph: BCCI

Rohit Sharma led a strong recovery as India took the honours in the second session on Day 1.

The Mumbai opener was unbeaten on 132 off 178 balls with Ajinkya Rahane, batting on 36 from 80 balls.

After losing three wickets in the morning session, Rohit and Rahane ensured there was no further damage, keeping England's bowlers at bay while scoring 83 runs from 28 overs in the post-lunch session.

Ajinkya Rahane and Rohit Sharma

IMAGE: Ajinkya Rahane and Rohit Sharma celebrate a four during their partnership. Photograph: BCCI

Rohit, who used the sweep shot to good effect against the spinners, grew in confidence, reading the pace and spin of the English bowlers well, to maintain his superb record in home Tests.

He got to his seventh century in Test cricket by paddling Moeen Ali fine on the leg side for two runs.

Ajinkya Rahane

IMAGE: Ajinkya Rahane bats after lunch on Day 1. Photograph: BCCI

Later, he and Rahane, who grew in confidence with the track appearing to ease up, raised a 100-run stand for the fourth wicket from 180 balls to put the home side in command.

Rahane had five fours in his unbeaten 37 off 88 balls while going into the tea break.

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