Dec 172012

Jonathan Trott and Ian Bell added 208 for the fourth wicket, India v England, 4th Test, Nagpur, 5th day, December 17, 2012The partnership between Jonathan Trott and Ian Bell calmed any England nerves © BCCI

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Report : England end 28-year wait for win in India
Players/Officials: Alastair Cook
Matches: India v England at Nagpur
Series/Tournaments: England tour of India

Alastair Cook left the presentation in Nagpur overladen with trophies after England completed their first series win in India for 28 years.

Not just one series trophy but two, plus individual recognition as man of the series, completed a perfect start to Cook’s England Test captaincy.

Add his unofficial stint as Test captain in Bangladesh when he stood in for Andrew Strauss and he has already twice led England to victories in subcontinent conditions which they have often found so alien.

“It is obviously a very special day; a special tour,” he said. “We will have great memories. It’s an incredible achievement.

“After the first Test it would be easy to let our heads drop but when we realised it was a result-wicket in Mumbai that gave us a lift.”

England’s celebrations were a world away from their misery in Ahmedabad less than a month ago when they were beaten by an innings in the opening Test; their frailties against spin again apparent.

Since then, Cook has taken particular pride in England’s ability to adapt to whatever conditions have been thrown at them. His own run tally of 568 in the series set the example with the bat as England conquered India’s spinners and also unveiled two superior slow bowlers themselves in Monty Panesar and Graeme Swann.

“We have played on four very different wickets,” Cook said. “We didn’t handle the Ahmedabad wicket so well, but the other three wickets were all very different in subcontinent style. Everyone in this squad can be proud of what they achieved, especially the way we bounced back after the heavy defeat in Ahmedabad.”

Nagpur was the oddest test of all, a pitch that was strikingly slow and uneven at the start and which gradually became more docile, a perfect surface for an England side prepared to bat with discipline to avoid defeat and so win the series.

“We were slightly surprised by the pitch at the start, how low and slow it was,” Cook said. “We thought it would get worse but actually it got better. We knew when we were batting in the second innings it was going to be very hard for India to take those wickets and if we applied ourselves with not too many soft dismissals it would be very hard to bowl us out.”

England’s authority on the final day was unshakeable as the Warwickshire pair of Jonathan Trott and Ian Bell took their fourth-wicket stand to 208 in 79 overs before the sides shook hands on a draw with England 352 for 4 and celebratory hugs broke out on the England balcony.

“I can’t credit the batters enough for fronting up and taking on that challenge,” Cook said. “Normally there are a few nerves on day like this but the calm way that Trotty and Belly batted was just fantastic.”

Dec 172012

The English dressing room is elated, hugging and fist-pumping and smiles all around, there is a lot of emotion there, while there will be some serious faces and more serious discussions in the Indian dressing room later on. Right now, it’s time for Cook and co. to celebrate what has been, barring a few hiccups and THAT one day in Ahmedabad, a comprehensive victory. England have outplayed India in all departments, and it’s a series they would cherish for long. 

No other team has bounced back from a Test down to win the series in India, and all the hype of a revenge series, as it was being touted, has backfired on the hosts. For Cook, in his first series as official captain, this is a moment to remember forever. 

So, it’s all over, and England have ended India’s eight-year run without a series defeat at home. They last won in 1984-85, they came back from a Test down to win that series, led by David Gower. They have come back from a defeat here now, led from the front by Alastair Cook. That was a 2-1 win in five Tests, this is a 2-1 win in four Tests.

End of play, match drawn

Over 154: England 352/4; Bell 116, Root 20And finally! An hour before time, England finally declare, the match is called off, and Gambhir will go on the scoreboard as the man who bowled the last over in this series that England have won so comprehensively.

Over 152: England 337/4; Bell 103, Root 18England have not declared and India have decided to have some fun here. And so, Gautam Gambhir comes on to bowl, his very first bowl in Tests. A little turn, and a single.

Over 151: England 336/4; Bell 102, Root 18That’s it! Bell gets his 100. His third longest Test innings in terms of balls faced. Gets there with three runs off Ashwin past backward square leg. His first three-figure mark in India, and well-deserved. 

Over 145: England 316/4; Bell 89, Root 11One run to Bell, courtesy a slight push off Ashwin to covers, and that’s one more run to the elusive 100.

Over 140: England 310/4; Bell 87, Root 7Jadeja to Bell after tea and India would, in fact, be hoping for him to get the 100 quickly so that they can all go back in. But it’s a maiden.


Over 139: England 310/4; Bell 87, Root 7Ashwin bowls the last over before tea, and surely England will get India to bat for one final session? Can Bell get his century here in this one over? But Root is on strike, and he plays out a maiden. No declarations yet, so England will still come out to bat in the final session.

Wicket: Trott c Kohli b Ashwin 143

Over 135: England 304/4; Bell 87, Root 1India get a wicket. Finally. This partnership, of 208 runs, is broken by Ashwin, and Jonathan Trott walks back. On the leg stump and he gets bat on to the ball, guiding it to Virat Kohli at leg slip. Joe Root has to walk out a second time. On the flip side, does this mean England will still wait for a Bell century, since the 300-mark for England is already come and gone? 

England on the verge of 300, Bell closing in on 100, the 200-partnership is up — there’s a lot happening out there (hell, who am I kidding?) But really, it’s good of England to let Bell get his ton — he has been out of form all through this series, so these runs would do him a lot of good.

Over 132: England 294/3; Trott 139, Bell 82Jadeja to Bell, three dots but makes up with a huge six over mid-off to enter the 80s. Guess England are waiting for him to get to his 100. If they are, we only wish Bell gets a couple more of these monsters and gets it over and done with.

Ian Bell and Jonathan Trott take a single on Day Five.

Over 129: England 283/3; Trott 135, Bell 75Chawla to Bell and Sehwag drops! Not that it would have made much difference to the result of the game but still. The ball took an edge and went straight to Sehwag at slip, an awkward height but Sehwag seems to have been caught unawares, unable to hold on. Maiden. 

Is this the time to just remind ourselves and anyone who might want to be bothered about it that these two are now the two highest scorers for England in this Test? Pietersen and Root got 73 each in the first innings, so this partnership is the highest as well for England in Nagpur this time. Oh well, guess trivia are the biggest support for those waiting for this day to get over.

Over 125: England 274/3; Trott 127, Bell 74Chawla gets the first ball to turn appreciably but it’s very slow, low and passes through the big gap between Trott’s bat and pad as he pushes forward safely to Dhoni, who whips off the bails for good measure even as Trott’s back foot is firmly planted on the ground. It’s a maiden and Trott’s not bothered to even react. Drinks.

Over 120: England 265/3; Trott 120, Bell 72Ojha comes to bowl and England get two runs. Yawn. The only excitement in this match will probably come when there is a changeover between innings, as and when England decide they have had enough fun in the middle. Or maybe a little bit when Bell gets his 100. Whatever!

Over 117: England 261/3; Trott 117, Bell 71Chawla to Bell, fuller delivery, straight in and punched through the overs on the back foot for four off the first ball. The second goes through covers as well for another four, timed perfectly. Defended the rest. Ahem. 

The lead for England is now past 250. Surely they can think of declaring and letting India bat two sessions? Or maybe not. Maybe they will declare on 300.

But perhaps, Ahmedabad’s where it all started to unravel India as well, specially in the second innings that showed this English team can fight back, hold its nerves, not lose its head and get along with the business of playing a Test, even as all the energy on the Indian side was concentrated on the kind of pitch they wanted to play on.  

It honestly doesn’t matter hereon on what happens in this Test. The series is over, England have won 2-1 and they have ended a 28-year wait for that. There were not too many who gave them a chance of doing that here, specially after that thrashing in Ahmedabad.

Over 112: England 249/3; Trott 115, Bell 61Chawla to Trott, a single.

Over 112: England 248/3; Trott 114, Bell 61Ojha comes on to bowl now and just a single.

Over 111: England 247/3; Trott 113, Bell 61Chawla to Trott and starts with a four, seems the break has had no effect on the batsmen here. A full toss, smashed through midwicket. Then a length ball nudged off pads for three runs towards deep square leg. 

Back after lunch, Chawla continues. 

Off course, the official declaration of a series win for England will only come at the end of the day. Can a vintage Sehwag innings wrest back the game? Remember, a draw will still not be enough for India, they HAVE TO WIN.  


Over 109: England 240/3; Trott 106, Bell 61Ashwin gets the last over before lunch. Full on off, pushed to midwicket. Flighted, defended back to the bowler. Two runs glanced to fine leg to end the session. 

These two came together when England were showing the first signs of a panic attack and have now got a ton and half ton each. The first session is 15 minutes away from completion, England are ahead by 237 runs and they can order the Anthony D’Mello Trophy to be packed to specifications for the long flight back home. A 28-year-old for wait for England is all but over now, and Cook and co. have successfully replaced David Gower and co. as the last team to win a Test series in India.

Over 105: England 233/3; Trott 103, Bell 57Piyush Chawla has been brought on to attack and is taken to the cleaners. Yes, by these two, even on a pitch like this. 13 runs came off that over, three boundaries included. Starts with a ball flighted outside off and Trott drives it between short cover and extra cover for four. Another one driven between mid-on and mid-wicket for another four and that brings up Trott’s century in some style. Standing ovation from the English dressing room. A single brings Bell on strike, and he decides to join the party with a four of his own, bottom-edged between Dhoni’s legs.

Over 102: England 219/3; Trott 94, Bell 52Ashwin to Bell and the out of form batsman muist be relieved to get his maiden fifty of the series. Half-volley on off and driven between stumps and mid-on for four. Another single to round up the over.

Over 100: England 210/3; Trott 90, Bell 47Ashwin to Trott, starts with a flick down to gully for a single.

Ravindra Jadeja bowls on Day Five.

Might be immaterial here but am I the only one who is not amused by the dancing and laughter in the India camp during drinks? Not exactly the state of a team one would expect is on the verge of a historic defeat. Then again, who am I to deny the players from some harmless fun? 

Over 97: England 206/3; Trott 87, Bell 46Ojha to Bell, outside off, defended. A single off a flighted delivery to bring on drinks.

Over 93: England 197/3; Trott 82, Bell 42Ojha to Trott, three runs. And with this, the England lead has crossed 200.

Over 88: England 185/3; Trott 79, Bell 33Jadeja to Trott, fired into pads and swept for four. And the half hour is up, which means five and half hours to go before England return with the Anthony D’Mello Trophy.

Over 83: England 173/3; Trott 71, Bell 29Sharma continues to Bell and starts with a short of length, wide off no-ball. Next ball, wide, goes for four driven between mid-off and extra cover. Then a single pulled away to square leg. A single from Trott to round off the over with the first boundary of the day.

Over 82: England 162/3; Trott 67, Bell 24Jadeja to Trott, maiden. How many times have we read/seen/written “a maiden” in this series? The 100th maiden came up yesterday, by the way.

Over 81: England 166/3; Trott 70, Bell 24India take the second new ball and throw it to Ishant Sharma. Straight on off, and left alone. Then one on middle and leg and Trott works it through midwicket for easy three runs.

Over 80: England 162/3; Trott 67, Bell 24A quiet start to the day after the fireworks — strictly verbal, not with the bat or ball — and a single for Trott.

Jonathan Trott and Ian Bell walk out for what may well be the last time in this series. Ravindra Jadeja with the ball. The brief war of words yesterday between the Indians and Trott was a rare outburst of frustrations, but the Indians might have picked on the wrong man to unsettle.

Scoring is a chore on this wicket, so if England put on another 100 by lunch, they may as well call off the game. 250-odd runs in two sessions will be impossible on this wicket. Then again, there is Sehwag.

It’s down to this final day of the Test series, which will decide if there will be a winner or the series end in a draw. On a pitch that was expected to fall apart by the third day but is still as hard as they come, England still need to put on a few more runs before they can sit back and relax. They also need to bat out the first session today to ensure they will go back with a first series win in 28 years and the Anthony D’Mello Trophy.

India Today brings you live coverage of the fourth and final Test between India and England from the VCA Stadium, Nagpur.

Dec 162012

Virat Kohli and Jonathan Trott exchange words on day fourNagpur: Virat Kohli and Jonathan Trott were involved in a verbal duel during the fourth day of the final Test between India and England here on Saturday.

Trott, batting on 43 in England`s second innings total of 123 for three, tried to cut a short delivery from pacer Ishant Sharma which was taken behind by Mahendra Singh Dhoni who threw it up high in the air in delight only to see his claim and that of other team members rejected by umpire Kumar Dharmasena.

Following Dharmasena turning down the confident appeal, Kohli ran up to the batsman for an exchange of words after which square leg umpire Rod Tucker summoned Dhoni and spoke to him.

It was not clear from TV replays whether Trott had edged Sharma or not.

Earlier, Cook had stood his ground when he was declared out caught behind for 13 by Dharmasena and left the field reluctantly after his first twin-failure in this four-game series.

He was out for one in the first innings here.


First Published: Sunday, December 16, 2012, 17:31

Dec 162012

England keep India`s desperate victory attempts at bayNagpur: A desperate India`s push for a series-levelling win was met with a dogged resistance from England who rode on Jonathan Trott`s gritty half-century to overcome a nervous phase as the fourth and final cricket Test seemed headed for a draw here on Sunday.

India batted for one hour in the morning before declaring their first innings at 326 for nine, four runs behind England, but could not make sufficient inroads as England reached 161 for three at close of an absorbing fourth day`s play.

The hosts needed quick wickets but the fourth day track at the VCA stadium did not show any signs of deterioration as England batted out the day without seeming to be under any major discomfort.

Trott (66) and Ian Bell (24) were batting at stumps, with England having an overall lead of 165 runs.

With just one day let in the game, a draw appears to be the likely result though all four outcomes — an Indian win, England win, tie and a draw — can still be possible.

India will need to dismiss England as quickly as possible tomorrow and score the required runs to entertain hopes of a series-levelling win. England will be quite content with a draw which would be enough to give them their first Test series triumph on Indian soil in 28 years. The David Gower-led England team had last won a series in 1984-85.

Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni kept shuffling his bowlers in a bid to break through the England innings but the English batsmen applied themselves well to keep the hosts at bay, much to the disappointment of a sizeable holiday crowd.

England were at a shaky 94 for three at one stage with captain Alastair Cook (13), Nick Compton (34) and Kevin Pietersen (6) back in the pavilion but Trott and Bell ensured that there were no further setbacks with a defiant 67-run partnership.

Trott was however a little lucky as a confident appeal for caught behind off Ishant Sharma was turned down by umpire Kumar Dharmasena, leading to some heated words being exchanged between Trott and Virat Kohli after the over.

Cook was controversially declared caught behind after making a painstaking 13 in 105 minutes, to Ravichandran Ashwin, while his opening partner Compton was given out leg before to Pragyan Ojha to leave England at 81 for two at tea.

The England skipper seemed to have clearly missed edging the ball to Dhoni, but was given out wrongly by Kumar Dharmasena for the second time in the match.

Replays also showed that Compton had been given out off an inside edge by Rod Tucker, though the ball was caught at slip by Virat Kohli at gully on the full.

Soon after tea debutant Ravindra Jadeja disturbed Pietersen`s off stump when the England batsman offered no stroke expecting the ball to turn away.

The visitors, clearly aiming to draw the match, added only 64 runs in 33.4 overs between lunch and tea after they were 17 for no loss in 13 overs at lunch. They were more attacking in the last session, scoring 80 in 32.2 overs.

Before their debatable ejections from the crease, both Cook and Compton were bent upon defending everything.

Runs came in a trickle though Cook was a bit fortunate.

A delicate leg glance off Ojha struck Cook`s counterpart Dhoni`s right pad and went in between lone slip Virender Sehwag`s legs for his first four.

In the same over, he tried to drive the left-arm spinner and missed the ball completely, but was lucky as it bounced over the stumps for four byes.

Cook`s deadpan defense was always fraught with danger as Ashwin made a ball turn across the face of his defensive forward stretch and earned a caught behind decision in India`s favour.

After Cook`s ouster, both Compton and Trott were also keen on defending rather than scoring runs, barring one occasion when a ball slipped out of Jadeja`s hand and was rolling wide when Trott hammered it for a `free` four. It was clearly against the spirit of the game.


First Published: Sunday, December 16, 2012, 17:21

Dec 132012

Nagpur: Debutant all rounder Ravindra Jadeja feels that India’s plan of going in with four spinners at the cost of a quick bowler is a good strategy and will pay off for the team  in the second innings.

“Four spinners will come in handy later in the game especially in the second innings.  Currently wicket is not offering much help to any kind of bowlers butI think spinners will get more and more help as the game progresses,” Jadeja said after the end of first day play of the fourth Test here today.

Jadeja dished out a decent performance with the ball as he dismissed Jonathan Trott and the half centurion Kevin Pietersen.

The Saurasthra player said that India were aiming to bowl out England for something between 300 and 350 on Friday.

“The less number of runs we give the better it will be for us. Ball will start turning on day two or three. As footmarks, develop ball will starting turning more. We will have restrict them to 300-350.”

Talking about the wicket condition, he said, “There is no turn on offer. It’s flat and very slow. Fast bowlers are also finding it difficult to bowl. No turn for spinners and bounce is low. Key to on this wicket is to bowl stump-to-stump and not give them easy runs and boundaries so that they play wrong shots and get out.”

By Indian Sports News Network

indian sports news
ravindra jadeja

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Dec 132012

Pietersen leads England to 199/5 at stumps on day oneNagpur: Some fine bowling performance from Indian bowlers and some resilient batting from the England batsmen saw the visitors score 199/5 at stumps on day one of the fourth Test being played at Vidarbha Cricket Association Stadium, Jamtha, Nagpur here today.

Indian bowlers did really well to take five wickets on the pitch where the ball was not coming on the bat. England in the day scored at a little 2 runs per over in what was a slow day of Test cricket. Indian team were well ahead of the over-rate the entire rate and ended up bowling 97 overs in the day.

Earlier in the day, England captain Alastair Cook won the toss and decided to bat first on a pitch that was covered with cracks before the start.

England had two changes in their squad with Steven Finn and Samit Patel being replaced by Tim Bresnan and Joe Root.

India too had two changes, with Zaheer Khan and Yuvraj Singh missing out their places to Piyush Chawla and Ravindra Jadeja.

Cook and Nick Compton have done well as an opening pair in the series but they failed in this match. Compton (3) was the first man to get out when he edged a rising delivery from Sharma and Dhoni completed an easy catch. Jonathan Trott got a lucky break when the umpire denied an appeal, with the replays showing that he was out.

But, Ishant got lucky in his next over when Cook (1) was adjudged leg before wicket when the ball was clearly missing the stumps.

Trott and Kevin Pietersen then played good cricket to put up an unbeaten stand of 45 runs to take England to lunch on 61/2.

The post lunch session saw the two not-out batsmen Jonathan Trott and Pietersen playing well. Together the two took the score past the 100 run-mark and Pietersen completing his half-century. But Trott soon got out shouldering arms to gift Ravindra Jadeja his first international wicket.

Ian Bell’s struggle continued as he looked extremely nervous in the middle and eventually got out to Piyush Chawla scoring one run from 28 deliveries that he faced. England finished the afternoon session at 133/4.  

Pietersen unbeaten on 68 started the evening session in style hitting the first delivery to the cover boundary. Indian bowlers continued bowling in good areas and were rewarded when Pietersen picked out Ojha standing at short mid-wicket of the bowling of Jadeja.

England at 139 for five were desperate for a good partnership and that’s exactly what they got as Root and Matt Prior held their ends together. Both batsmen dropped anchor and waited for bad deliveries. Together the two added 60 runs in 177 balls that they faced together.

Root (31*) and Prior (34*) will begin the proceedings for the visitors on day two.

Brief Score:

England: 199/5 in 97 overs (Pietersen 73, Trott 44, Ishant Sharma 2-32)   

By Indian Sports News Network

alastair cook
kevin pietersen
matt prior
ms dhoni
piyush chawla
ravindra jadeja

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