India crashed out to England in the second Test at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai to allow the visitors level the four match Test series 1-1. India, batting first in the match scored 327 and barring couple of performances all the other batters failed as they could not pose any resistance to English spinners.
In reply England rode on some fantastic batting and piled up 413 taking 85-run first innings lead. It looked like India would launch a fight-back but then whole batting unit failed again and the collapsed like nine pins. They could manage only 142 in the second innings. England needing just 57 runs to win the match, reached the target within 10 overs without losing a wiccket.
Let us take a look at few of the hits and flops of the match:
Cheteshwar Pujara: Pujara who scored a double century in the first innings continued his form in the match and scored a brilliant century in the first innings. On a day when none of the Indian batters could pose any challenge to English spinners, he looked at ease and played well to score third century of his career. He scored 135 off 350 balls that included 12 boundaries.
Ravichandran Ashwin: He starred for India but not with the ball, but bat. He played a perfect fiddle to Pujara and his resolute batting helped India past the 300 runs mark. After all the top India batsmen were back in the hut, he joined forces with Pujara and kept England at bay for quite some time, before getting out early in the first session of the second day. He scored 68 off 144 deliveries including nine boundaries.
Gautam Gambhir: Under fire opener Gambhir after failing in the first innings, played a resilient innings in the second essay. When all the batsmen collapsed without putting much fight, Gambhir kept India’s hope alive. He scored 65 off 142 balls including six boundaries.
Pragyan Ojha: Pragyan Ojha was the only Indian bowler who could create some sort of problems for English batters. Ojha who took nine wickets in the first Test took a five wicket haul in the first innings of the match. He returned with the figures of 5-143.
Ravichandran Ashwin: Ashwin, who played a stellar role with the bat in the first innings, failed with the ball. He was found guilty of bowling poor balls on many occasions and failed to exploit the conditions. He 43 overs and gave away 145 runs and took only two wickets.
Sachin Tendulkar: Sachin flopped in the first Test and when India hoped that the Master Blaster would bail out the team in the second innings on his home turf, he fell to the same bowler (Monty Panesar) at a same score. He scored eight in both the innings.
Virender Sehwag: India's success is directly proportional to the success of their opening pair and the first Test is testimony to it. Virender Sehwag and Gautam Gambhir gave India a good start and later Sehwag wnet on to hit a run-a-ball 117 which took the match away from England. But the Najafgarh Nawab flopped in both the innings of the second Test, scoring 30 and 9 repectively.
Yuvraj Singh: Yuvraj Singh made a dream comeback in the first Test where he went on to hit a gritty half-century in the first innings. But he looked baffled in front of the English spinners in the second Test and was out for a naught in the first innings and could make only eight in the second.
Mahendra Singh Dhoni: Dhoni in the match failed both as a batsman and as a captain. In the first innings Dhoni got a start and put together a descent partnership with Pujara, but just when it was looking that the two will get India out of the trouble, Dhoni got out. In the second innings he was once again taken in slips of the bowling of Panesar. He played with hard hands in both innings and that resulted in his downfall. In the field he allowed easy singles to Cook and Pietersen and failed to take the initiative.
Virat Kohli: A lot was expected from this talented youngster, but he has been disappointing so far. He was negative in his approach in the first innings and got out on 17. In the second he lost his wicket on a full toss. Kohli will have to change his mind set before taking the field in Kolkata.
Alastair Cook: English skipper Alastair Cook led from the front and scored 122 off 270 balls including 13 boundaries and a six. He looked resolute and anchored the innings very well. He never lost his patience and hardly did make any mistakes in his innings. This was his second consecutive century against India and fourth overall against the men in blue.
Kevin Pietersen: Pietersen, who flopped in the last match, came to the occasion in a grand manner and scored a mammoth 186 off 233 balls including 20 fours and four sixes. He was at his best and toyed with the Indian bowlers. While Cook played the role of an anchor, he scored at a fast pace and never allowed the Indian spinners to find their length.
Monty Panesar: India’s tormenter-in-chief in the match, Panesar came into the team as a replacement to Tim Bresnan. And what a move that turned out to be for England as he trapped India in his spin web. He took 11 wickets in the match taking five and six wicket hauls in the first and second innings respectively.
Graeme Swann: Swann played a second fiddle to Panesar in the match and complemented his efforts brilliantly. He took four wickets in each innings of the match to end the match with eight wicket haul.
By Indian Sports News Network