India continue to lose momentum in the Investec Test Series
Fourth Investec Test, Manchester: Once again the Indian batsmen failed to impress as they were knocked out by a combination of good seam bowling in the first innings and yet another splendid effort from part-time spinner Moeen Ali in the second innings. England replied strongly to India’s woeful 1st innings effort of 152 with a total of 367 through Joe Root and Josh Butler’s commanding 134-run 7th wicket stand.
Unfortunately, none of the Indian batsmen save Ashwin's 46* stepped up to the mark as they were wiped out for 161 in the second innings. England won the match by an innings and 54 runs. The fact that India were 8/4 in the first hour of the Test match spelt doom for the visitors then and there.
All eyes will be on India’s vice-captain Virat Kohli to turn things around dramatically in the last Investec Test. When Kohli strikes form, the Indian batsmen play around him and generally post a good total on the board. India’s No. 3 Cheteshwar Pujara needs to step up as well and rotate the strike more often while holding one end strong.
Another RCBian Varun Aaron impressed with figures of 3/97. He looked sharp and hardly dropped pace. England’s Stuart Broad was on the wrong end of a nasty Aaron bouncer which squeezed through Broad’s helmet grill to leave a scar on his face. We can expect Aaron to repeat his sharp performance in the last Test.
India currently trail the series 2-1 and the visitors will hope for an all-out team performance at the Oval on Independence Day to draw the Investec series and restore the form they displayed at Lord’s.