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3rd Investec Test: English Skipper Back in Form; Gary Ballance’s Ton Leads England to Score Big

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3rd Investec Test: English Skipper Back in Form; Gary Ballance’s Ton Leads England to Score Big

July 28
11:18 2014

englandEngland, Monday, July 28 – 3rd Investec Test started at the Rose Bowl in Southampton on July 27. India arrived on the crease with two prominent changes – Rohit Sharma and Pankaj Singh who were in included in the playing XI in place of Stuart Binny and Ishant Sharma, respectively. Dropping Ishant in the 3rd test raised a number of questions in the minds of viewers as he was the man who made England to loose the 2nd Test Match at Lord’s at the hands of India.

Inflicting a 95-run defeat in opposition to Alastair Cook’s men in the earlier match, hardly a change was expected from Mahendra Singh Dhoni. However, drafting Rohit and Pankaj in a team he clearly showed that chances will be given to other players as well. 1st day of the match did not turn good for Indian team as solid partnerships made the host to gain foothold and move ahead for a big score.

Cook, who was striving to return to form from a long time, finally did what he was keenly waiting to do. Even though the English captain fell short of 5 runs to hit a century but his splendid play imparted huge role in giving a strong start to his team. 95 runs of 231 balls, along with 9 boundaries, were enough to realize Dhoni employ his bowlers in a way that wickets can be taken as soon as possible.  Ravindra Jadeja sent him back to the pavilion when he was getting dangerous with each passing over. Sam Robson, the opening partner, had to depart early after contributing 26 runs when Mohammed Shami took his wicket. Jadeja took a good catch giving a breakthrough to India.

His dismissal made Gary Ballance to arrive on the crease and take the charge. The 24-year-old cricketer continued his good show with the bat against Indian squad and pocketed a ton. Being not out, he is playing at 104 runs (15 x 4) of 204 balls. Ian Bell is also not out at 16 runs. 3 boundaries from the experienced cricketer is a signal that if India fail to bowl in accurate line and length and catches are dropped – as like Jadeja did by dropping Cook on 15 runs, they will register victory in the ongoing Test match without much ado.

Massive runs are on the cards if middle and lower order batsmen stand rock solid against Indian bowling attack, which seemed not up to the mark on Sunday.  Joe Root, Moeen Ali, wicketkeeper-batsman Joseph Charles Buttler, Chris Jordan, Stuart Broad, Chris Woakes and James Anderson are yet to bat and they have the capability to put humongous runs on the score board. Despite not getting an ideal start on the Day 1, India will look forward to turn the table. Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan, Jadeja, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and the newcomer Panjak Singh have the latent to change the situation and astonish their opponents by taking wickets at a stage when things do not seem in favor.

Dhoni, Murali Vijay, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli and Ajinkya Rahane are likely play solid innings that could make India be a tad ahead of the England in all regards. Indian bowling would have to be sharp to grab wickets and increase their possibility of chasing an attainable target. Contest is going to be exciting as England will leave no stone unturned to lead over the guest by a good margin. 2nd day is crucial in several aspects as a clearer picture will appear over the fate of 3rd Investec Test.

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