After a dramatic win at Lord’s Cricket Ground, which is counted as one of India’s finest Test victories on the foreign soil, a lot was expected from Virat Kohli and Co at the Headingley Test. After winning the toss at Headingley, Kohli decided to bat first, a decision that backfired in the end as India lost all their wickets for a mere 78 runs in the first innings. England, on the other hand, looked controlled and vigilant with both bat and ball.
Let’s have a look at what went wrong for a strong Indian side, which had a 1-0 lead going into the Headingley Test.
A TOSS TO FORGET
All the debates of Kohli always losing the toss were nullified as he managed to win it this time around. He was happy and surprised at the same time, but only until India decided to bat first at Leeds. Openers KL Rahul and Rohit Sharma, both of who had dominated the series so far, had to face some Jimmy Anderson classic, with the conditions helping him to dismantle India’s top 3.
Virat’s cover drive yet again failed as he edged one to Jos Butler of Anderson’s bowling and the misery of the Indian batting lineup started as the English pacers ramshackled the Indian batting unit who were bundled out for 78 runs. Rohit Sharma was the only Indian batsman who played with great control but was short of partners as the wickets kept on tumbling.
ENGLAND START STRONG
India’s downfall at the Headingley Test never seemed to stop as the poor batting performances reflected on India’s bowling unit. The English team had by far the best conditions to bat on, with the pitch dried up and the sun helping them to score runs with ease. The openers for the first time in the series went past the 100-run mark.
Rory Burns, who was heavily criticized for his batting technique, answered in his style by scoring a gritty 61 runs and was well supported by his counterpart Haseeb Hameed. The youngster who seems to have a special liking towards India scored 68 valuable runs at the top.
ROOT SHOWING HIS CLASS WITH ANOTHER CENTURY
Joe Root’s phenomenal show with the bat continued as he made sure the visitors had to toil hard to fetch his wicket. He scored his 23rd Test century and helped England post a mammoth 432 runs on board in the first innings. The innings he played was a prime example of a man in the form of his life. Root left no stones unturned as he played a knock that assured England a win in Headingley.
The Indian bowlers had a very off Test match as they worked hard to get 10 English wickets. Shami was once again the pick of Indian bowlers who picked up 4 wickets, long before England had a huge lead of 354 runs on the board.
INDIAN BATTERS REGAINING FORM
What turned out to be a tough toss for Team India in the Headingley Test was followed by a series of events which went against the Indian Team. India had a huge task ahead of clearing a big deficit put on by a Joe Root special knock. After losing in-form KL Rahul early, Rohit Sharma showed great composure. He was well supported by Cheteshwar Pujara as they gave some hopes on Day 3. Both the batsmen were successful in seeing off the new ball and then scoring runs with a good strike rate, without losing a wicket for two sessions. However, Sharma, while he was looking dangerous, was caught in front by a full-length delivery by Ollie Robinson.
Kohli joined Pujara in the middle and continued the good run. Virat played a few shots at the start, scoring a brisk half-century. A much-needed boost for Team India and Kohli as he managed to score some runs this time. Though the partnerships didn’t help India’s cause, the return to form of India’s top two batters would be a huge relief for the management and the fans.
CLINICAL ROBINSON RULES DAY 4
Kohli looked solid at the crease in the second innings, and Pujara continued Day 4, with an overnight score of 91*. The Indian fans who were hoping for a better start were taken aback as Ollie Robinson started the day with a very crucial wicket of Pujara who was judged LBW, missing his hundred by some margin, followed by another big wicket of a well-settled Kohli. The Indian skipper looked good but not until he nicked another out swinging delivery outside off stump at the first slip.
The Indian team looked in trouble with not many resources to help them get past a huge trail of 100+ runs and they gradually wilted under pressure. England, who looked very strong at the start of day 4, was rewarded with wickets, as the Indian team were yet again bowled out for 278 runs, which meant an innings defeat for Kohli’s side.
While Anderson managed to pick only one wicket of Ajinkya Rahane, it was England’s new age pace attack of Ollie Robinson and Craig Overton with five and three wickets to their name, respectively.
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