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    Not much will be made of Rashid - probably because the game is probably heading to a draw, despite what Boycott and Botham say - but I felt today was his best performance in whites for England.

    He needed this performance. There were signs in Bangladesh that his captain's trust in him was waning, and he has rarely looked so in control. Such control allowed England to slow the scoring rate - a welcome thing - and it was refreshing post-Bangladesh, where he struggled. You still get the odd bad ball but when's confident there's an energy to his approach and snap and a fizz to his action.

    I'm quite pleased how England have bowled with control on such a docile track and in such sapping conditions. If, and it's a big if, Anderson is fully fit then England have a competitive side if you swap him in the side with Ansari or Rashid next Test.

    Of course, the Vijay-Pujara partnership was excellent. Their average partnership is a whopping 65, and Vijay's average in first Tests of a series since June 2014 is 82. It also marked the latter's third ton against the English, and there was only one bigger second-wicket partnership for India against England than Vijay and Pujara's here, between Rahul Dravid and Gautam Gambhir in 2009.
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    Remarkable batting collapse by Australia and a real signifier of their poor quality right now, skittled out for 85 at home to SA, to bring back memories of the Trent Bridge fiasco where they were bundled out for a paltry 60.

    All teams have collapsed at times - they were 47 all out in Cape Town in 2011 - but those debacles occurred halfway around the world, not in front of a home crowd in Hobart.

    They lasted only 32.5 overs as Vernon Philander led the perfect bowling display for the conditions after Faf du Plessis won the toss and sent Australia in. Lord's was the last place Philander took five wickets away from home, more than four years ago,

    The ball moved off the seam and it swung, and Philander finished with 5 for 21, and Kyle Abbott picked up 3 for 41. The figures for Philander are even more remarkable considering he left the pitch after receiving a bump from Smith. He claimed the scalps of David Warner, Usman Khawaja and Adam Voges in a blistering early spell, as Australia succumbed to 18-5, before returning to dismiss Joe Mennie, the debutant who offered the most resistance aside from Smith's 45 not out, and Nathan Lyon.

    I feel sorry for Smith, who carried his bat after debutant Callum Ferguson, who came in for Mitch Marsh, was run out, and Abbott picked up Burns, Starc and Hazlewood for 1, 4 and 8 respectively. Rabada got Nevill to complete the set. It took them 197 balls to get rid of Australia.

    By stumps, Australia's bowlers had tried to fight back as best they could. Mitchell Starc started the final session with three wickets in the space of 10 deliveries (Cook, Duminy and Elgar).

    Josh Hazlewood also removed captain Faf du Plessis and a well-set Hashim Amla for 47 after tea, while Joe Burns missed half chances at short leg when Temba Bavuma was on seven and 27. Bavuma is 38 not out, while Quinton de Kock will resume on 28.

    It meant 15 wickets had fallen in the day, although Australia lost twice as many as South Africa. And by stumps, South Africa had scored more than twice as many runs as Australia. It was Australia’s lowest total in 32 years in a home Test, when the West Indies blasted them out for 76 at the Waca Ground.
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    3rd innings in this match situation are horrible niggly little things with nothing to gain and everything to lose. Not enough time to set a target but you can throw the match away with a collapse. Cook and Hameed did really well, and we can at least have a notional push towards a win now. Declaration after lunch and one and a half sessions to try to bowl them out should be a confidence boost as much as anything, a 'winning draw' I guess. Taking 20 wickets is going to be a massive challenge for us across the series though.
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    Just seen highlights of the Australian innings, and it looked like an absolute clinic in fast bowling from the seamers. Philander can put it on a 10 pence piece, he's got a remarkable record when you factor in that his pace is low 130kph.
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    There'll be no winner between England and India here - but, crikey, fair play Hameed. Good temperament, even better technique, and a really mature display today. England may lead by 163 runs with ten wickets in hand and, but you imagine it'll play out as a draw, with neither side really able to press home an advantage on the final day, due to time constraints.

    But the tourists will take confidence, hope and pleasure from this display, against the world's best side on home turf, after the trauma of Bangladesh.

    Hameed, Cook’s latest partner in a long line, registered his first half-century in his second Test innings and finished the day unbeaten on 62, with Cook not far behind, as England lay the foundations and shut the door on India's hopes of being able to put them under pressure post-their first innings. It's obviously still early days for him, but he does very much look like part of the furniture already. Indeed, at times he looked more comfortable and better than his partner at the other end, a batsman 12 years and 135 caps his senior, with over 10,000 Test runs already in the tucked away in bank.

    Full credit to the young Lancs opener, too, because he had just been in the field for 162 overs, spending much of the time at short-leg, where he held three catches, but he was composed and played some lovely hooks and cover drives. He even got the second six of his tender career!

    There were other encouraging signs - namely Rashid, who posted impressive figures of 4-114 and spun the ball sharply, more dangerously than his counterpart Amit Mishra has managed so far. It's a real watershed moment for Rashid, too, because he helped hoover up the tail and he appears to be winning the trust of his captain Cook.

    India started the day on 319 but only progressed to 488, namely because Ravi Ashwin batted so well, posting 70 (his average vs England is 52), after Rahane was bowled by Ansari, Kohli hit his wicket, and Moeen got Saha. Adil struck to dismiss Jadeja, too, before doing the same with Yadav, and Moeen had Ashwin caught in the deep for a much deserved second wicket.

    (Original post by The Wavefunction)
    Just seen highlights of the Australian innings, and it looked like an absolute clinic in fast bowling from the seamers. Philander can put it on a 10 pence piece, he's got a remarkable record when you factor in that his pace is low 130kph.
    Lehmann has admitted he is under pressure - and rightly so. The pitch was green, a seamer's paradise, and is naturally drawing comparisons to Trent Bridge.

    Of Australia's five sub-100 totals since 2010, two have occurred in England, one has been at home against the English, and the others have been against SA both home and away, perhaps showing they aren't as adept at performing well against quicks as many would believe.

    Philander - whose last five-for came at Lord's - loved the conditions, and they fitted him perfectly. He landed the ball in the channel outside off stump and moved it just enough to trouble the Aussies, who time and time again made poor decisions, namely David Warner's decision to chase a wide delivery in the very first over of the day, Joe Burns, Adam Voges and Peter Nevill all getting in a tangle, and the run-out of Callum Ferguson.

    Simon Katich has argued that batsmen are not spending enough time in England, playing on greentops, anymore. Adam Voges aside, Australia’s other top seven batsmen have played 31 games of county cricket between them.
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    I don't forsee the Test between India and England having a result other than a draw. It's a long series and back-to-back Tests to start off with and you can't blame Cook if he wants to just take the positives out of a performance to the second Test.

    India could have been in the hut earlier had Cook snapped that chance off Broad yet it's great to witness Rashid bowling well after what must have been a demoralising end to the Bangladesh series with the criticism that went his way and he was still a tad unfortunate his runs conceded went to three figures or that he didn't get five wickets.

    Hameed, contrary to what people assumed about this batting style, is enjoyable and serene to watch at the top of the innnings. Some lovely strokes including a six of Jadeja and it was heart-warming to see his father Ismail's reaction on his seeing his 19-year-old son reach his first half-century in their family's home state, considering the effort he has put in getting Haseeb to where he is. He should get his ton and England to bat, maybe just after lunch. If they had Anderson, you'd have backed them to make it a tad nervy for the home side but a draw it should be.

    Also caught the collapse of Australia briefly in the morning, Philander was a real handful bowling with pace and zest yet that slight injury he suffered looked worrying after Steyn got hurt in the last Test but Australia have fought back. Also, KP is really suited to this Australian commentary scene with all the 'banter' involved.
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    Yeah, I have to admit, I just thought Hameed was a blocker and would bat deep - but he actually uses the crease very well, and is capable of scoring much more freely and much more quickly than I had ever anticipated. The scoreboard may not have suggested it, but he was under plenty of pressure too.

    But he did brilliantly, and with that maiden half-century, has become the first England opener to make a half ton on debut since Cook himself 10 years ago. He has also become the third youngest man to make a half-century in Test cricket for England and, if he makes 38 more runs on the final day, he will be the first England opener to make a century on debut since Cook and the youngest England Test centurion of all time.

    Not since Root have I been more impressed with an England debutant. So far he has surpassed the hype that surrounded his selection and by quite some way. His shot selection, reading of lengths, temperament and technique have been bordering on astonishing in one so young. He's so thin, too, but he managed to loft Jadeja for a very hefty six. He really reminds me of both Dravid and Atherton at times, in truth.

    We must be careful, of course. There have been glimmers of hope in the past - namely Sam Robson and Adam Lyth, who both made centuries in their second Tests and Nick Compton, who made two in NZ.

    But it must be said that none of them looked as serene, unflappable and downright at home in Test cricket as Hameed does.
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    Looks like Australia are done.
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    Second day completely washed out in Hobart - poor for the neutral and spectators, but good news for SA really. Even if this second Test transpires to a draw (which it undoubtedly will) they will head to the third Test for what will likely will be seamer-friendly conditions with a pack that has already plucked all ten Australian wickets for under 100, twice.

    In my opinion, none other than Warner, Smith, Starc, Hazlewood and perhaps Shaun Marsh deserve a place in this Australian team. They persist with handing debuts to ageing debutants - and that's a farcical approach, when you see how SA are blooding youngsters, who are willing to showcase their talent and truly step up.

    CA boss James Sutherland says the schedule isn't to blame - and he also dismissed calls for chairman of selectors Rod Marsh, who has already announced he will leave the key post next year, to step down. Many pundits have bemoaned the international and domestic schedules – notably that Australia’s Test squad only had one day-night Sheffield Shield clash to prepare for the Proteas.

    SA will resume on the third morning at 5 for 171, with Temba Bavuma on 38 and Quinton de Kock on 28, with a lead of 86 runs. The forecast for the remainder of the Test is much better, with the possibility of a small amount of rain on day three but the likelihood that the fourth and fifth days should be largely free of rain. Play will start half an hour early on each of the remaining days, with the first ball due to be bowled at 10am.
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    So England end the first test like we did a year ago in the UAE, with a good positive draw. This was actually a better performance too, ever since that Root/Ali partnership we've looked the most likely winners, even if a result was never likely.

    Hope we can maintain this kind of performance throughout the series this time around. Will be interesting to see how Anderson is worked back into the side, I guess Woakes is the most likely to make way.
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    Can't wait for people to come out and **** Cook off - but I thought his batting this morning was exemplary, and his declaration timing perfect.

    Cook scored his fifth Test century in India, the most by a visiting batsman, but a result was never truly on the cards. India were asked to survive 49 overs - a straightforward task for them, in truth - but there were ominous signs when they lost Gautam Gambhir for a duck, giving second slip catching practice off Woakes. Vijay and Pujara - exceptional in the first innings - steadied their cause, making sure there was no unlikely collapse through a partnership that lasted 14.4 overs before tea.

    Vijay was caught by Hameed - another good catch by him in close quarters - off Rashid, but Kohli and R Ashwin saw India through with a 14.2-over partnership, with the former ending just one shy of a half-century. Pujara was LBW off Rashid, Rahane bowled cleanly by Ali, and Ravi and Saha sent back by Ansari and Rashid respectively. The latter continued his good display in this Test, posting 3-64 off 14 overs.

    And after the interval, England had 31 overs to take eight wickets in, and managed half of that. England will be the happier side,given how pretty much everyone wrote them off beforehand. I think this really gives them confidence going forward - not because they were the better side or came close to forcing a result, necessarily, but more because it has displayed the fact they CAN play and CAN go toe-to-toe with the world's best side in their own backyard.

    I thought Hameed was more conservative today, bogged down by some clever and disciplined bowling, and he fell 18 runs short of what would have been a ground-breaking and brilliant debut century. Of course, he did register the highest score by an England teenager and batted long enough to become part of the biggest opening partnership for England in India. He fell trying to slog a wide ball from Mishra, and Joe Root did the same. Ben Stokes was promoted to No. 4, but he was outscored by Cook in the 68-run partnership. Stokes remained unbeaten on 29 off 29 with Cook declaring after falling.
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    (Original post by Mackay)
    There'll be no winner between England and India here - but, crikey, fair play Hameed. Good temperament, even better technique, and a really mature display today. England may lead by 163 runs with ten wickets in hand and, but you imagine it'll play out as a draw, with neither side really able to press home an advantage on the final day, due to time constraints.

    But the tourists will take confidence, hope and pleasure from this display, against the world's best side on home turf, after the trauma of Bangladesh.

    Hameed, Cook’s latest partner in a long line, registered his first half-century in his second Test innings and finished the day unbeaten on 62, with Cook not far behind, as England lay the foundations and shut the door on India's hopes of being able to put them under pressure post-their first innings. It's obviously still early days for him, but he does very much look like part of the furniture already. Indeed, at times he looked more comfortable and better than his partner at the other end, a batsman 12 years and 135 caps his senior, with over 10,000 Test runs already in the tucked away in bank.

    Full credit to the young Lancs opener, too, because he had just been in the field for 162 overs, spending much of the time at short-leg, where he held three catches, but he was composed and played some lovely hooks and cover drives. He even got the second six of his tender career!

    There were other encouraging signs - namely Rashid, who posted impressive figures of 4-114 and spun the ball sharply, more dangerously than his counterpart Amit Mishra has managed so far. It's a real watershed moment for Rashid, too, because he helped hoover up the tail and he appears to be winning the trust of his captain Cook.

    India started the day on 319 but only progressed to 488, namely because Ravi Ashwin batted so well, posting 70 (his average vs England is 52), after Rahane was bowled by Ansari, Kohli hit his wicket, and Moeen got Saha. Adil struck to dismiss Jadeja, too, before doing the same with Yadav, and Moeen had Ashwin caught in the deep for a much deserved second wicket.



    Lehmann has admitted he is under pressure - and rightly so. The pitch was green, a seamer's paradise, and is naturally drawing comparisons to Trent Bridge.

    Of Australia's five sub-100 totals since 2010, two have occurred in England, one has been at home against the English, and the others have been against SA both home and away, perhaps showing they aren't as adept at performing well against quicks as many would believe.

    Philander - whose last five-for came at Lord's - loved the conditions, and they fitted him perfectly. He landed the ball in the channel outside off stump and moved it just enough to trouble the Aussies, who time and time again made poor decisions, namely David Warner's decision to chase a wide delivery in the very first over of the day, Joe Burns, Adam Voges and Peter Nevill all getting in a tangle, and the run-out of Callum Ferguson.

    Simon Katich has argued that batsmen are not spending enough time in England, playing on greentops, anymore. Adam Voges aside, Australia’s other top seven batsmen have played 31 games of county cricket between them.
    hameed to me lookis a real find, very skillful- very indian-esq in his style of batting. i dont know how he would fare in Perth or Cape town style pitches.

    england have played the better in this test match- yes they got first use of the pitch, but they applied themselves more than most of the indians both with bat and ball. i would hope Raul will be fit for the next test to bolster the batting as Gambhir is well past test standard nowadays. perhaps also a re-think of the 3rd spinner; once again india start a series with an undercooked squad of poor selections, seeing as they selected him why not now try out the young Jayant on whats expected to be a much more turning pitch. otr re-think the slections for 3rd onwards bringing in the highly rated wristspinner Kuldeep Yadav.

    england will be happy with their XI apart form the Andersen question ie if hes ft will he come in for ansari or woakes, where the pitch will take spin (And in theory all the next4 pitches should be sharp turning result pitches rather than the rajkot 4 day flat track)
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    (Original post by Chakede)
    hameed to me lookis a real find, very skillful- very indian-esq in his style of batting. i dont know how he would fare in Perth or Cape town style pitches.

    england have played the better in this test match- yes they got first use of the pitch, but they applied themselves more than most of the indians both with bat and ball. i would hope Raul will be fit for the next test to bolster the batting as Gambhir is well past test standard nowadays. perhaps also a re-think of the 3rd spinner; once again india start a series with an undercooked squad of poor selections, seeing as they selected him why not now try out the young Jayant on whats expected to be a much more turning pitch. otr re-think the slections for 3rd onwards bringing in the highly rated wristspinner Kuldeep Yadav.

    england will be happy with their XI apart form the Andersen question ie if hes ft will he come in for ansari or woakes, where the pitch will take spin (And in theory all the next4 pitches should be sharp turning result pitches rather than the rajkot 4 day flat track)
    You don't get any victories for drawing Test matches, of course, but England achieved a very pleasing one in Rajkot. The game's result was indicative for the surface: there was increasing turn and the oddity, but I expect Visakhapatnam to deliver a drier, barer, more devious strip for the second Test.

    Cook was excellent, and Hameed batted for more than an hour, calmly but without the same fluency of day four, if we're honest. As aforementioned, he reminds me of Dravid and Atherton - capable of lovely strokes, getting bat on ball, and aligning perfectly with the face of the bat, but today he was restricted by the quality of India's bowlers.

    Hameed definitely looks set for the long-term, but fair play to Rashid who, in a batsmen's game, picked up more wickets than anybody. The slow bowlers for England took 13 wickets at an average of 33.30, compared to nine wickets at 57.88 by India's spinners. England's spinners delivered about 60 balls per wicket whereas India spinners bowled more than 100 balls per wicket.

    I actually don't expect we'll see Anderson until - at the very earliest - the third Test. You look at SA and the headaches they are having with Steyn lacking match fitness, and you get a sense the ECB and England's coaching setup will not want to expose Anderson too early.
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    i might be a bit picky but i sensed bad sportsmanship from England ( as usual). Kohli only needed 1 run more for his 50 and there were only 3/4 balls left in the day. Cook could have been nice and let him have the run... but i guess not
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    (Original post by sachinisgod)
    i might be a bit picky but i sensed bad sportsmanship from England ( as usual). Kohli only needed 1 run more for his 50 and there were only 3/4 balls left in the day. Cook could have been nice and let him have the run... but i guess not
    Doesn't the decision have to be mutual? Or does the fielding team decide when to end the match? I was a bit surprised he didn't get to 50 too.

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    (Original post by Enginerd.)
    Doesn't the decision have to be mutual? Or does the fielding team decide when to end the match? I was a bit surprised he didn't get to 50 too.

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    Nope its the fielding captain's decision to shake hands and end it as a draw and the batsman cant refuse.
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    I think it's often overlooked, but Kohli and Cook are (from what I've seen) equally defensive captains. The latter should bat to win far more than he does, in my view, but regardless, he was the difference between the sides today. Had England managed to get Kohli early, you sense the tide would have turned for the visitors, especially with Rashid so capable of hoovering up a tail.

    You get a sense that India may have found a way to trouble Hameed, too. A couple of times, he was caught between the back and front foot, unsure of which to really take on, and he almost got a nick to a fielder on each occasion. It'll be interesting to see whether the hosts - especially Umesh Yadav and Shami - will deploy this tactic, because the young Lancs opener looked more uncomfortable when faced with pace, rather than spin.

    India's pace bowlers' average speeds were higher than the English seamers, but they didn't regularly deploy a bouncer, which surprised me. There was only one attempted bouncer to Hameed out of the 259 deliveries he received in the course of the match.
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    (Original post by sachinisgod)
    i might be a bit picky but i sensed bad sportsmanship from England ( as usual). Kohli only needed 1 run more for his 50 and there were only 3/4 balls left in the day. Cook could have been nice and let him have the run... but i guess not
    Letting someone have the run is not good sportsmanship...
    Kohli's the Indian captain; he chose to prioritise the result ahead of taking chances at the end to get his 50 and rightly so.
    According to Nasser Hussain, Kohli's anger near the end of the match was being directed at the ball boy for throwing the ball back so quickly. if anything, that was unsportsmanlike, and also showed where Kohli's priorities lied. Making a run once the match was basically over (maybe even officially, I don't know the exact rules) is hardly a proper 50 anyway.
    Anyway, 50's are overrated
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    (Original post by RVNmax)
    Letting someone have the run is not good sportsmanship...
    Kohli's the Indian captain; he chose to prioritise the result ahead of taking chances at the end to get his 50 and rightly so.
    According to Nasser Hussain, Kohli's anger near the end of the match was being directed at the ball boy for throwing the ball back so quickly. if anything, that was unsportsmanlike, and also showed where Kohli's priorities lied. Making a run once the match was basically over (maybe even officially, I don't know the exact rules) is hardly a proper 50 anyway.
    Anyway, 50's are overrated
    Both the fielding captain and the batsman have to agree to finish the game before the allotted time or overs have been bowled. This can only take place once the umpire has signalled the last hour has begun. It wasn't just Cook's choice, Kohli also had to agree. Kohli could have quite legitimately said he didn't want to accept the draw early and continued, although he may have looked a little self centred


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    India have a few headaches, in truth, namely their lack of penetration from the spinners - who were outperformed, statistically at least, by the England trio - and the form of Gautam Gambhir, who I'm a big fan.

    I may champion Gambhir at times, being a KKR fan, but he was removed in both innings in a Test all too easily, and at his age, you have to question whether there is any point in persevering with him - especially with England’s seamers fancying their chances.

    India will be more careful next time around, and it's probably a cause for optimism for the home side that they weren't defeated despite being the poorer side here. England played well, but couldn't convert or ramp home that advantage - and you imagine the second Test pitch won't be as welcoming as the one in Rajkot.

    Everything went wrong for India right from the start - and they still didn't lose. They lost the toss on a very good flat pitch for batting, had an absolute shocker in the field dropping numerous chances, their spinners put in a poor performance and the opposition took advantage and piled on nearly 550 runs. Yet India replied resolutely with hardly any pressure and drew the match on a tricky 5th day pitch. If anything, almost everything went right for England and it was their best chance to win here, but India did well to defy them.

    The next Test will be equally, if not even more challenging for England, given the turning nature of the pitch. Hopefully the confidence gained from this match, and the lessons learnt in Bangladesh, will set them in good stead and perhaps allow them to spring a surprise or two.
 
 
 
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