India emerged victorious as they recorded a historic triumph on Monday that saw them beat England in a Test at Lord’s for the first time since 1986 and second overall in 82 years.
India emerged victorious as they recorded a historic triumph on Monday that saw them beat England in a Test at Lord’s for the first time since 1986 and second overall in 82 years. The critics and experts might have cited this as a ‘team effort’ but we take a look at the heroes from Team India that ruled the roost at the ‘Home of Cricket’:
He may have flopped with the bat but Team India will be glad to have that ‘MSD’ of the old. Pinpoint strategies, believing in his strike bowler and field placements, were spot on from the Indian skipper. Dhoni has outdone his English counterpart Alastair Cook who was a bit wayward in his captaincy especially the field placements.
The hero at Trent Bridge, Murali Vijay continued where left off as the Chennai batsman scored a valiant 95 in the second innings at Lord’s. When India were faltering at 123-4 on Day 3, Vijay partnered Dhoni as they laid down a perfect partnership for the team to build a solid lead. Even though he missed out on a ton, Vijay was hailed as a hero for his bravado innings that weathered the storm.
A green pitch, England’s noses are up and India starring down the barrel but in walked Mumbai-born Ajinkya Rahane. He alongside Bhuvneshwar Kumar built on a solid partnership that saw the former score a maiden ton (103) as India scored a posing 290 on the first day of the Test match.
Indian bowlers were underrated prior to their 5-Tests against England but Bhuvneshwar Kumar proved that India can still match the English bowling arsenal as his swing bowling rattled the Poms’ batsmen with the former finishing with a career best figures of 6-82. Not to forget, his crucial knocks with the bat that included a 99-wicket stand with Ravindra Jadeja that helped Team India post a daunting target. ‘Bhuvi’ has scored 201 runs and taken 11 wickets in the series so far.
During the second innings for India, it seemed the visitors were about to be bowled over under 250 but a sudden burst of attacking shots from Ravindra Jadeja made sure that India finish above 300. That was not all, the spinner even claimed a wicket of Sam Robson in the England’s second inning and also ran out James Anderson to send India into raptures.
From a ‘zero to hero’, Ishant Sharma’s 7-wicket burst handed India that much required victory over England and win their first Test at Lord’s in over 28 years. Just as it seemed England were about to claim their foothold in the match, Ishant popped the wicket of Moeen Ali right before lunch and then plucked out the likes of Joe Root, Matt Prior, Ben Stokes and Stuart Broad that handed the Delhi bowler a ‘Man of the Match’ award. Ishant’s spell was his personal best, a first (seven-wicket haul) by an Indian in England, fifth best figures at Lord’s by any visiting bowler and best bowling at Lord’s by a subcontinent bowler.
With the focus now shifting to Southampton, England will come again strong but India need to rework some of their strategies with the likes of Virat Kohli still not able to fire.