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    England most definitely will take the winning elements of their display forward and there are many. As touched upon in the Verdict by Atherton, Rashid has produced a performance that will go along way to building trust not only from his team-mates but more importantly, his captain.


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    Thing for Rashid is he's got a chance to establish himself in the team outside of Asia too. I suspect, given his performances over the summer and briefly in Asia, Moeen Ali will be our regular no.5 now (not just being pushed up the order for spinning conditions). That creates a spot lower down.

    Not playing test cricket until July after this series, but I'd expect this balance going forward, and the 8 players named are pretty established.
    Spoiler:
    Show


    Cook
    [opener]
    Root
    [batsman]
    Ali
    Stokes
    Bairstow
    Woakes
    [bowler*]
    Broad
    Anderson

    *Outside chance of a keeper I suppose




    Could be a really big series for Rashid. He has started it well, but most people are saying pitches in the rest of the series will turn a lot more, which will put a lot of pressure on him. So much to gain if he can step up. If he doesn't we might end up with a 5 man seam attack :lol:
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    (Original post by Louis.)
    Thing for Rashid is he's got a chance to establish himself in the team outside of Asia too. I suspect, given his performances over the summer and briefly in Asia, Moeen Ali will be our regular no.5 now (not just being pushed up the order for spinning conditions). That creates a spot lower down.

    Not playing test cricket until July after this series, but I'd expect this balance going forward, and the 8 players named are pretty established.
    Spoiler:
    Show



    Cook
    [opener]
    Root
    [batsman]
    Ali
    Stokes
    Bairstow
    Woakes
    [bowler*]
    Broad
    Anderson

    *Outside chance of a keeper I suppose





    Could be a really big series for Rashid. He has started it well, but most people are saying pitches in the rest of the series will turn a lot more, which will put a lot of pressure on him. So much to gain if he can step up. If he doesn't we might end up with a 5 man seam attack :lol:
    I suspect that they'll go for a specialist bowler, but putting Buttler in that side would make it as strong a batting line up I've seen in years.
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    (Original post by The Wavefunction)
    I suspect that they'll go for a specialist bowler, but putting Buttler in that side would make it as strong a batting line up I've seen in years.
    Yeah it'd be mad. Suspect Foakes would be more likely, England don't want the same person keeping in all 3 formats. But they seem to be giving Bairstow an extended chance anyway.

    The person it might really suit is Mark Wood. Could just give him one 4-over-spell a session and tell him to put everything into each ball, there'd be 4 other quicks to make up the bowling. Think he needs to be a short form specialist for his health tbh, but it could be a possibility.
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    One thing being overlooked is the influence of Saqlain, who seems to have given a lot more confidence to the English spinners. Of course, the trio impressed - but I think the contribution of Mushtaq has been extraordinary. Indeed, Rashid spoke at length post-fourth day about how benefitting talking to an off-spinner has been for him.

    He put in his best performance in whites, as I've aforementioned, as Moeen was named man of the match, conceding fewer runs than Ashwin, and he also took as many wickets in fewer overs. Even Ansari - who I've said in previous posts has been picked under false pretences, for his perceived reputation with the bat (in comparison to Batty) - had a better strike-rate than Jadeja.

    I feel for both sets of players with the ridiculous scheduling. It's hectic in the extreme, and it reeks of incompetence on the organisers' parts. They're clearly trying to cram in as much action as possible to get as much money as possible from the broadcasters, but I wonder whether this over-saturation will affect the product and on-pitch quality.

    Both squads looked utterly ravaged of energy at the end of the match - Cook mentioned he has only seen his daughter for a few days - and you wonder whether England will bring in Anderson to unburden the likes of Woakes and Broad early, like the second Test, rather than waiting (like they probably should, given Steyn's fitness issues right about now).

    Apparently, Anderson has been flying all fitness tests in flying colours behind the scenes, so don't be surprised to see him deployed. If he is, he'll likely come in as a straight swap for a seamer, given the second Test pitch is likely to be drier, offering more spin and turn to the slow-armers.

    As for Buttler, I can see him being brought in to take the gloves, but the Telegraph's article today suggesting he would be deployed as a specialist batsman, in the top four, seems incredibly harsh on Duckett, who at such a tender age (and having impressed thus far) doesn't need to have his confidence knocked by being omitted. Root was dropped in Australia back in 2013-14, and Stokes has been left out before, but it seems an unnecessary risk, especially with the youngsters (Hameed and Duckett) taking to Test cricket like a duck to water.
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    It's baffling why the ECB were willing to invest in a spin coach (Mushtaq Ahmed) when Swann was around and yet since his departure they've not tended to have one and considering the issues they've had in that department, it's odd they don't offer Saqlain a long-term opportunity. Spinners clearly are benefitting from him and he's around till after the third Test but going forward, they need to re-assess this IMO.
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    No rain in Hobart - and, though there is a chance of some this afternoon, we're all geared up to get underway in 10 or so minutes time. SA get back underway on 171-5, and the day off favoured the tourists, you have to say, with some moisture undoubtedly working its way into the pitch.

    SA have a handy 86-run lead, after that skittling of the hosts on day one.
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    Australia go to the stumps at 121-2, with Khawaja well set on 56, and Smith 18, trailing by 120 runs after SA were all out for 326 in 100.5 overs earlier in the day.

    The visitors went the better part of the first session without losing a wicket, so the nature of their compounding will disappoint them, but full credit to Australia for the fightback they showed, in a climate where seemingly everyone is writing them off and calling for a post-mortem into their dreadful form, which has seen them struggle in Asia and lose to SA in limited overs cricket too.

    During the final session of the day, SA seemed to ramp up the pressure themselves (Rabada and Abbott bowled brilliantly), but they could only claim one wicket, David Warner for 44 (off Abbott), and Khawaja’s half century was frantic, coming from 91 balls, as he was routinely beaten outside the off-stump but held his nerve to capitalise on some loose deliveries towards the end of play.

    It was real Test cricket, with tension in every over. The SA pacemen were electric, and Australia did well to stay alive, after Quinton de Kock’s knock of 104 helped the visiting side build a first-innings total of 326 despite a six-wicket haul from Josh Hazlewood.

    Philander almost had Khawaja and Smith, while Bavuma missed a run out chance on the latter, after Australia again lost a wicket in the opening over of their innings when Joe Burns was caught behind down the leg side for a duck.

    South Africa went to lunch on 6 for 288, and the remaining four wickets fell for 38 runs after the break as Hazlewood knocked over the tail and finished with 6 for 89. Joe Mennie also picked up the first wicket of his Test career by sending back Bavuma, who had scored 74 and offered the last resistance. Once he departed the end came relatively quickly: Hazlewood had Keshav Maharaj bowled for 1, Kyle lbw for 3, and then finished the innings with Vernon Philander caught behind for 32.
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    Absolute scenes in Hobart.

    Australia lost eight wickets for 40 runs in a dismal morning of cricket to finish this game, with wickets tumbling at regular intervals after Usman Khawaja’s was out on 64. His captain Steve Smith hung around for much of what followed - scoring 31 - but Kyle Abbott and Kagiso Rabada worked the hosts over in style.

    Man of the match Kyle Abbott finished with 6-77 from 23.1 overs and Rabada ended up with 4-34 from 17. Adam Voges and Callum Ferguson departed with the worst shots, and Nevill looked comfortable. No wonder Victorian captain Matthew Wade has urged Australian selectors to turn Peter Handscomb’s way for the third Test. Handscomb, who bats at No.4 for Victoria, hit 784 runs in last year’s Shield season at an average of 43. All three of the aforementioned are in trouble: Adam Voges has contributed 30 runs in four Test innings this summer, Callum Ferguson made three and one on debut in Hobart, while gloveman Peter Nevill contributed three and six and missed a crucial stumping chance on day three.

    It was aways going to be tough for Australia, but I cannot believe they completed an innings-and-80-run win before lunch on day four – marking Australia's fifth straight Test defeat. Australia's batsmen were completely unable to handle the swing, seam and bounce of Abbott and Rabada, and they lost inside seven sessions, when Mitchell Starc edged behind off Abbott and the Nathan Lyon lobbed a catch to mid-on to give Abbott a six-wicket haul, and nine for the match.

    Never before in the history of the sport has Australia been whitewashed in a Test series on home soil. Smith did his best, taking 40 but he was helpless to stop Australia slipping from 129-2 to 150-7. Heads will roll after this shambolic loss. Smith has said it's "time to get some younger guys in", and he's right. Australia have a poor habit of giving ageing debutants the Baggy Green. du Plessis, meanwhile, says he is aiming for a 3-0.

    SA look like continuing their good form against Australia after winning in 2008-09 and 2012-13 - but never have they beaten them by an innings, and the 558 balls faced by the hosts is the second least in a Test at home in the last 100 years. They had survived just 457 balls against England in Brisbane in 1928-29.

    16 number of single-digit scores by the Australia batsmen in the match is ridiculous. Starc, Hazlewood, Steve Smith and David Warner appear the only automatic selections.
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    So, Bayliss has urged consistency - and I hope he helps show his team the worth of that by resisting change with the line-up.

    Sure, Anderson could come in. But who drops out? Stuart Broad was rested only one Test ago. Dropping either of the other two seamers, Ben Stokes and Chris Woakes, not only means leaving out an in-form player but weakens the batting order, and the only other option is to drop a spinner but the pitch will be spin-friendly, so you would have thought the tourists will be wary of altering the 3-3 balance of the attack.

    Anderson worked hard on Tuesday morning, apparently, but surely his return will be delayed until the third Test at Mohali. It seems unlikely that Anderson could cope with back-to-back Tests at the moment, and with such a farcical schedule, you imagine Stokes and Woakes could be in the red in terms of energy levels soon.

    If England were behind in the series I'd consider throwing the still recovering Jimmy in there for Duckett, but I'd be in favour of keeping India out in the field and piling on some more runs, even if it means another draw.

    The ACA has promised a "neutral pitch" for Visakhapatnam's Test after Kohli had expressed displeasure at the amount of grass on the pitch in Rajkot, despite Shah saying it was an ideal Test pitch made for a five-day match. Some might think that leaving grass means the pitch is suppose to help the seamers, and that's why Kohli was complaining, but in India grass is left on the pitch to hold the pitch together.

    Opener KL Rahul has been added to India's squad, and Gautam Gambhir simply doesn't look Test level. He scored the last of his nine Test centuries in 2010 and even without Rahul, Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan, I wouldn't be picking him ahead of Akhil Herwadkar.
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    (Original post by Mackay)
    So, Bayliss has urged consistency - and I hope he helps show his team the worth of that by resisting change with the line-up.

    Sure, Anderson could come in. But who drops out? Stuart Broad was rested only one Test ago. Dropping either of the other two seamers, Ben Stokes and Chris Woakes, not only means leaving out an in-form player but weakens the batting order, and the only other option is to drop a spinner but the pitch will be spin-friendly, so you would have thought the tourists will be wary of altering the 3-3 balance of the attack.

    Anderson worked hard on Tuesday morning, apparently, but surely his return will be delayed until the third Test at Mohali. It seems unlikely that Anderson could cope with back-to-back Tests at the moment, and with such a farcical schedule, you imagine Stokes and Woakes could be in the red in terms of energy levels soon.

    If England were behind in the series I'd consider throwing the still recovering Jimmy in there for Duckett, but I'd be in favour of keeping India out in the field and piling on some more runs, even if it means another draw.

    The ACA has promised a "neutral pitch" for Visakhapatnam's Test after Kohli had expressed displeasure at the amount of grass on the pitch in Rajkot, despite Shah saying it was an ideal Test pitch made for a five-day match. Some might think that leaving grass means the pitch is suppose to help the seamers, and that's why Kohli was complaining, but in India grass is left on the pitch to hold the pitch together.

    Opener KL Rahul has been added to India's squad, and Gautam Gambhir simply doesn't look Test level. He scored the last of his nine Test centuries in 2010 and even without Rahul, Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan, I wouldn't be picking him ahead of Akhil Herwadkar.
    i think Karun Nair would be the most realistic choice as replacement if Rahul was not fit. but im glad rahul is back in, unlucky today but he is a name for the fututre. also happy that bcci have gone with my suggestion of giving Yadav the offie a go on this pitch. good toss to win again for india and pujara and kohli have capitalised. worried about rahane is looking normally so talented, looking at odds with himself in shot slection
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    Ominous for England. India set for a big score and the pitch is already starting to do a little bit - certainly more than at this stage in the 1st test.
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    Hm - India's day obviously, and I knew from the moment England lost the toss that it would be a long day for them.

    India's overnight scoreline - 317-4 - is intimidating, after three and four, Pujara and Kohli, impressed with a masterful pair of centuries and a 226-run stand for the third wicket. The latter is surely the best batsman in the world - bar none. I'm a huge fan of Root and ABDV, but Kohli just oozes class and, like Tendulkar, you get the impression he is the lynchpin on which all Indian hopes rest.

    By the close, Kohli was 151 not out, his 14th century in his 50th Test appearance, and even more worryingly for England, the pitch will suit India going forward, showing ominous signs including signs of turn and uneven bounce for the spinners.

    Anderson was clearly fit enough - which is an encouraging sign - and he exploited reverse swing in the evening session to remove Pujara for 119. And then, with two overs of the day remaining, he struck with his third delivery with the second new ball to send back Ajinkya Rahane for 23.

    Those wickets came after Stuart Broad struck with his fifth ball of the match as KL Rahul, Gautam Gambhir's replacement at the top of the order, was caught in the slips before Anderson sent back Murali Vijay after he made a meal of a bouncer.

    That left India perilously placed on 22 for 2 after five overs, but they responded magnificently, offering England few chances - interestingly, Rashid miscued a half-chance to dismiss Kohli, which could have been vital - and England will need a change of something if they are to haul their way back to parity in this contest.
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    Getting fed up of the continuous cycle that is:
    "Experts" criticise England's spinners
    England's spinner perform well
    England's spinners praised
    England's spinners under perform
    Repeat

    There aren't exactly top class spinners being knocking on the door, this is as good as it gets. Lazy journalism.

    Also, ABDV>Kohli
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    A shame Pakistan and NZ was washed out today. Misbah is targeting NZ's shaky top order, but you imagine the NZ quicks are relishing getting stuck into the pitch, with Williamson wanting an "attacking" mindset from the off.

    It was interesting to see the way Pujara sped up his scoring today - before this match, in 6134 balls faced, Pujara had sent only five for six. But he was excellent today, changing well against the short ball, and firing some lovely shots off as Kohli settled in for a big score. The thing about Kohli, too, is that it'll be a big, big score. In his last seven Test hundreds, he has beaten 150 six times. That's remarkable.

    (Original post by The Wavefunction)
    There aren't exactly top class spinners being knocking on the door, this is as good as it gets. Lazy journalism.
    Agree with this. They did their best today, but just struggled to exert the same control witnessed in Rajkot, and struggled to get some scoreboard pressure, but it's largely to do with Pujara's and Kohli's quality.

    And you'd probably say Cook was wrong to deploy Ansari so early (the 11th over or so, I think) but equally as punishing was Rashid's costly error. He isn't the best fielder, and he got the catch all wrong, and Kohli will punish him. Bringing on Ansari did make some sense - he's a left arm slow bowler, bowling to right handers, and each of England's successful tours to India have seen a top quality left-arm spinner run riot.

    Ansari could be trusted for only two overs in his second spell, though. Again, this shows he was just being toyed with. The most senior spinner, Moeen, was exceptionally expensive - and Rashid offered the most control, boosting his confidence going forward even more (hopefully) after a very good first Test. His performance today was uplifting, again, despite the drop - and it shows that he was entrusted with more overs – 26 – than the other two put together. It's also telling that Mo wasn't utilised until 40 overs in - despite Broad seemingly being on his last legs.

    Ashwin and Jadeja will run riot because this is a helpful pitch, you imagine. This is a good spinning wicket (albeit one which doesn't turn square).
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    (Original post by Mackay)
    A shame Pakistan and NZ was washed out today. Misbah is targeting NZ's shaky top order, but you imagine the NZ quicks are relishing getting stuck into the pitch, with Williamson wanting an "attacking" mindset from the off.

    It was interesting to see the way Pujara sped up his scoring today - before this match, in 6134 balls faced, Pujara had sent only five for six. But he was excellent today, changing well against the short ball, and firing some lovely shots off as Kohli settled in for a big score. The thing about Kohli, too, is that it'll be a big, big score. In his last seven Test hundreds, he has beaten 150 six times. That's remarkable.



    Agree with this. They did their best today, but just struggled to exert the same control witnessed in Rajkot, and struggled to get some scoreboard pressure, but it's largely to do with Pujara's and Kohli's quality.

    And you'd probably say Cook was wrong to deploy Ansari so early (the 11th over or so, I think) but equally as punishing was Rashid's costly error. He isn't the best fielder, and he got the catch all wrong, and Kohli will punish him. Bringing on Ansari did make some sense - he's a left arm slow bowler, bowling to right handers, and each of England's successful tours to India have seen a top quality left-arm spinner run riot.

    Ansari could be trusted for only two overs in his second spell, though. Again, this shows he was just being toyed with. The most senior spinner, Moeen, was exceptionally expensive - and Rashid offered the most control, boosting his confidence going forward even more (hopefully) after a very good first Test. His performance today was uplifting, again, despite the drop - and it shows that he was entrusted with more overs – 26 – than the other two put together. It's also telling that Mo wasn't utilised until 40 overs in - despite Broad seemingly being on his last legs.

    Ashwin and Jadeja will run riot because this is a helpful pitch, you imagine. This is a good spinning wicket (albeit one which doesn't turn square).
    I'm sure I saw a stat earlier saying that Kohli averages 156 against left arm spin. Doesn't matter whether your Ansari or Herath, you'll always struggle against class like that.
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    (Original post by The Wavefunction)
    I'm sure I saw a stat earlier saying that Kohli averages 156 against left arm spin. Doesn't matter whether your Ansari or Herath, you'll always struggle against class like that.
    Yeah, that's my issue too. Even Ashwin or Jadeja would struggle getting Kohli out - the guy is insane. It's going to be a mammoth, mammoth total from him I fear.

    You get this thing sometimes, when a very good player (Kohli), in very good form is batting on a very good pitch which suits them to a tee, where everything just clicks for them and everything goes their way - they score fast, look in complete control and entirely dictate the entire landscape of the Test match from here on out.

    The fact that's he's not celebrating any of his milestones suggests that he's hungry for more.

    And why shouldn't he be? Fair enough, he played a loose hook shot which almost got him out - but he hasn't looked in trouble in any of the innings he's played so far in this Test series, bar maybe a couple of shorter balls today.

    He only got himself out in the first innings of the first Test match by stepping back on the stumps and getting out hit wicket. Aside from that, he's looked in total control of proceedings.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/cricket/38016668

    Harsh from Vaughan tbh.
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    They may have lost three wickets, but I make that India's session this morning, scoring almost 100 runs.

    Moeen Ali revived the tourists fortunes in the second Test in Visakhapatnam - but at the same time proved far too expensive - by claiming three quick wickets in the second hour. By lunch on the second day, India had slipped from their overnight 317 for 4 to 415 for 7, with R Ashwin sticking around resolutely 47 not out.

    Ashwin was dropped on 17 by Stokes, who had caught to dismiss Kohli before Moeen doubled his tally by removing Saha LBW, and claiming Jadeja when he pinned him in front too.

    Elsewhere, NZ are in complete control vs Pakistan - at 104-3, in reply to Pakistan's 133 all out. Misbah struck 31, but Southee picked up a brace of wickets and Grandhomme claimed 6-41.

    6/155 is the previous best figures for a New Zealand player on Test debut - Alex Moir against England in Christchurch in 1950-51 and there have only been two lower totals for Pakistan in New Zealand than the 133 in this match. Both those totals came in the same match, in Hamilton in 2000-01, showing the level to which they were outplayed today.

    de Grandhomme broke through when he scythed through Azhar's defence with an in-dipper. The old adage of 'one brings two' ensured when Southee, brought back form the other end, sent back Aslam, who jabbed hard to get a thick edge to Raval at second slip.

    Pakistan's top order crumbled after a solid 31-run opening stand that frustrated the hosts, with de Grandhomme sending back Azhar and Southee got Aslam, before Aazam and Younis were caught in the slips and Raval in the cordon respectively.

    Pakistan had gone from 31 without loss to 56 for 4 but they slowly rebuilt through a 32-run stand, but the lunch break saw Asad Shafiq, dismissed, and Sarfraz Ahmed was caught by Todd Astle, and then Boult and Southee overcame insipid starts to finish with two wickets apiece.

    In reply, after Tom Latham was lbw to Amir, and Ross Taylor was caught, Raval - the other debutant in this NZ side - and Nicholl showed grit to end on 55 and 29 not out respectively following Williamson's dismissal.
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    Hm - disappointing this. England slip from 34-1 at tea, with Root and Hameed well-set, to 103-5, after the latter and Duckett were dismissed following Shami sending back Cook, for a paltry return of just 2 after a very impressive first Test match in Rajkot.

    It was Ravi who accounted for Duckett, bowling him for five after Hameed and Root had dug in for a 30-run stand before tea. Not for the first time, Duckett plays down the wrong line to the off spinner and is cleaned up. The former, in particular, bided his time and picked his runs well - scoring 13 from 50 balls - before he was run out after a mix-up with Root. Hameed wanted a second, Root didn’t, and a combination of a superb throw by the debutant Yadav and some nifty work by Saha meant Hameed was run out.

    Root fell shortly after claiming his half-century, charging at Ashwin and slicing an attempted drive towards deep mid-off, where Umesh Yadav backpedalled to take a good catch. An excellent review from India brought the fifth wicket - Moeen - who went for a 21-ball one as spin began to take its toll.

    To dismiss India, the tourists claimed their final three wickets rather swiftly to have the home side all-out for 455. Moeen Ali and Adil Rashid claimed five wickets between them, and Ben Stokes chipped in to skittle the resistance after Ashwin and Jayant Yadav played well. Together they added 64 for the eighth wicket, but Stokes had Ashwin caught behind, and Rashid wrapped up the tail by claiming Jayant and Umesh.

    But England were suffocated by spin in the final session. A score of 103 for five at the close may not suggest it, but England batted extremely well at times in seriously difficult circumstances. India were quite brilliant - with the ball, in the field, with DRS – and will surely win this Test match.

    Elsewhere, WI take on Zimbabwe in the tri-series tomorrow - after West Indies' beat SL in their opening match, with their debutants shining. Zimbabwe will probably look to bring in an extra spinner in these conditions but WI will go unchanged, and the former have their work cut out if they are to stop this tri-series becoming a two-horse race after SL and WI claimed bonus points victories in their first match against Zimbabwe.
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    Just watched some of it back.

    The first wicket was a proper wicket - it was a beauty of a delivery, and like opening batsmen so often do, Cook saw his feet stuck and in a tangle. He didn't get onto the pitch, left a gap and it was good bowling with the new ball - rattling the off-stump with sheer force. I think that's only the second time Cook has been dismissed by a quick on Indian soil.

    I blame Root for the run-out. Hameed was half-way down the pitch and was told "no" - but I felt Root should have seen that double through, and after that, it was all India. Things like this turn games, and the nature of the run-out - as well as the wicket itself - was just so damaging.

    Duckett played poorly today. He may score some runs here and there, he can hit well and play some nice shots, but playing off the leg-stump like he currently is is just a recipe for disaster. He plays down the wrong line time and time again - and Farbrace was right: his technique is naive, and he has brought that bad habit with him from county cricket, and he needs to get rid of it quickly. For the third time in six Test innings he fell in strikingly similar fashion. He was bowled in similar fashion by Mehedi Hasan in Chittagong and edged to slip off Ashwin in Rajkot.

    To lose two or three quick wickets in such a frenetic period of play was really disappointing.

    England actually bowled very well this morning, in particular Moeen and Rashid, who improved three-fold from yesterday, and Anderson ran in well too. Moeen Ali's bowling strike rate against India in Tests is 47, the second best for any spinner with 25-plus wickets against India. Moeen's average against India's top-seven batsmen is 28.75, the best among spinners in the last 10 years. The next best is Graeme Swann, who took 34 wickets at an average of 34.

    I think England made the wicket look more difficult than it actually is. The wicket is slow and there is low bounce but no real consistent sharp turn that you see generally in India. It's difficult as a batsman when you're new to the crease here but once you adjust to the slowness of the wicket, it isn't too difficult to make runs. There is slow turn and the ball isn't hooping around.

    For the first time in a long time Ashwin, who has terrorised the world’s visiting batsmen in India, was having the same effect on English tourists. Before this game he had averaged 53 with the ball against England as opposed to 25 in all Test cricket, but he's going to improve those figures.
 
 
 
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