Cricket

Ind vs Eng, 1st Test Day 2 | Root and Stokes bat India into the ground

Skipper Joe Root scored a superb double century in his 100th Test as England continued to frustrate India, amassing 555 for eight by stumps on the second day of the first Test, at M.A. Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai.   | Photo Credit: PTI

A milestone looming, he bravely skipped down the track displaying compelling lightness of feet, got to the pitch of the flighted ball from R. Ashwin, and eased it over long-on to take him past 200.

Then, Joe Root laughed as he celebrated the occasion.

The trick is as much in the mind as technique. When you get both aspects right, the effect can be devastating.

You watch Root bat and it’s hard to believe he is captaining the side. He’ssmiling, enjoying himself in the middle, making light the burden of expectations from a skipper.

And with his mind and body in harmony, Root is in a rarefied ‘Zone’.

Flowing strokes

In this territory, the belief is big, the ball appears bigger, the strokes flow in all directions, the gaps are opened up and the hefty scores are conjured with consummate ease.

The only man tonotch up a double hundred in his 100th Test, and the first visiting batsman to make a double hundred in India since 2010, thehistory-making Root continued to leave landmarks behind.

And England, riding on Root’s 218 and a brutal 82 from the powerfulBen Stokes — the two added 124 — was on a commanding 555 for eight at close on day two at Chepauk.

The pitch showed signs of wear and tear, where the ball often kicked up from the footmarks.

Root’s monumental effort — he was finally prised out by onethat straightened from left-arm spinner Shahbaz Nadeem — underlined his powers of concentration.

Hardman to dislodge

He is a hard man to dislodge. And the right-left combination of Root and Stokes kept India wicket-less before lunch.

Picking length early, Root continued to impress. A scorching square cut of Jasprit Bumrah caught the attention. He drove spinners in front of the wicket with authority.

Of course, he was in total control while sweeping. When the ball turned, he travelled back, played with soft hands.

The left-handed Stokes’ duel with Ashwin was engaging. The big Englishman thrust his front leg forward and blasted the off-spinner straight for a six. Ashwin got one to dip,Stokes miscued but the bowler could not hang on to a tough return catch.

Forceful on the on-side, Stokes remarkably bludgeoned Nadeem with slog-sweeps even as the bowler got the ball to jump from the footmarks. Stokes finally perished swinging at Nadeem.

Useful contributions

There were useful contributions from Ollie Pope, Jos Buttler and Dom Bess as England’s tally swelled.

And the consistent Ishant inched within a wicket of the 300-mark castling Buttler and Jofra Archer with two sharp incoming deliveries.

Interestingly, India lost all three reviews and when offie Washington Sundar got one to drift and turn, found the edge of Buttler’s bat but saw his appeal being negated — replays confirmed the nick — India had run out of them.

Washington, bowling with bite as the day progressed, was unlucky not to consume Bess, floored by Rohit Sharma at mid-wicket.

It was that sort of a day for India. A day of missed opportunities.

Scoreboard

England

1st Innings Rory Burns c Pant b Ashwin 33, Dominic Sibley lbw b Bumrah 8,7 Daniel Lawrence lbw b Bumrah 0, Joe Root lbw b Nadeem 218, Ben Stokes c Pujara b Nadeem 82, Ollie Pope lbw b Ashwin 34, Jos Buttler b Ishant 30, Dominic Bess batting 28 ,Jofra Archer b Ishant 0, Jack Leach batting 6

Extras: (b-2, lb-16, nb-19) 37 Total: 555/8 in 180 overs

Fall of wickets: 63-1, 63-2, 263-3, 387-4, 473-5, 477-6, 525-7, 525-8

Bowling: Ishant Sharma 27-7-52-2, Jasprit Bumrah 31-4-81-2, Ravichandran Ashwin 50-5-132-2, Shahbaz Nadeem 44-4-167-2, Washington Sundar 26-2-98-0, Rohit Sharma 2-0-7-0.

 


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Printable version | Oct 22, 2021 10:16:40 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/cricket/root-stokes-take-england-to-3553-at-lunch-on-day-2-at-chepauk/article33766265.ece

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