Day 2 of the first Test saw India extend their dominance over England and take a first-innings lead of 175 runs with three wickets in hand. India started the day at 119/2, trailing England’s first-innings total of 246 by another 127 runs.
Joe Root started proceedings for England. After conceding a boundary, the former England captain dismissed Yashasvi Jaiswal for 80 off 74 balls. Shubman Gill struggled to rotate strike before perishing for a 66-ball 23. KL Rahul looked in sublime touch from the get-go. He stitched a fine 64-run partnership with Shreyas Iyer for the fourth wicket. After Iyer threw his away a good start, Ravindra Jadeja joined Rahul and the duo scored at a quick rate. They added 65 runs off just 74 balls. Rahul was looking well set for a century but he attempted a big shot that was taken by Rehan Ahmed off the bowling of Tom Hartley.
KS Bharat and Jadeja stitched a watchful 68-run partnership off 141 balls to take India’s lead to three figures. Bharat and Ravichandran Ashwin departed in quick succession before Axar Patel joined Jadeja and their 63-run partnership took India safely to 421/7 at Stumps.
Talking Points from Day 2:
3. Shubman Gill’s struggles in red-ball cricket continue
After having a disappointing series in South Africa, the talented Shubman Gill would have hoped to make an impact in home conditions. However, he didn’t look at ease in the final session on Day 1 and there wasn’t much change to his batting on Day 2. He played many dot balls and allowed the pressure to get to him. In the end, he tried to hit a flighted delivery from debutant Tom Hartley through the leg-side but he couldn’t get it past Ben Duckett at mid-wicket. Gill’s painstaking knock ended on 23 off 66 balls.
2. Joe Root proves his worth as an off-spinner
Ben Stokes didn’t bring Joe Root on to bowl on Day 1. However, the star batter was given the ball in the first over on Day 2 and he picked up the wicket of Jaiswal immediately. Later in the day, he got the better of a set KS Bharat. Root finished with figures of 2/77 off 24 overs and was the second-most economical bowler for England after Jack Leach.
1. Ravindra Jadeja – The invaluable all-rounder
After tormenting England on Day 1 with a three-wicket haul, Ravindra Jadeja reminded the cricket fraternity about his batting quality on Day 2. He came out to bat at No. 6 and remained not out on 81 off 155 balls. He hit seven fours and two sixes during the knock. Jadeja also switched gears according to the match situation. The veteran would want to notch up his fourth Test ton on Day 3.