There will be many questions raised over England’s cricketers as a batting collapse on the fifth day of the second test secure a 1-0 lead in the five-match series for India.
England had the advantage when they won the toss on a typically English wicket that was perfect for bowling. However, a Rahane century helped the Indians post an above-par 295 in their first innings.
Alastair Cook’s woes continued as he got out for just 10 as captain and opening batsman, but Gary Ballance may have just become England’s new no.3 with a century to help England reach 319.
India weren’t that far behind and a Ravindra Jadeja 68 alongside yet another half-century from B Kumar meant they reached 342, meaning England would have to repeat their first innings total to win the match.
They started batting on the afternoon of the fourth day, but Cook got out yet again for a low score. However, Joe Root and Moeen Ali begun a good partnership the next day to give England hope. Unfortunately for England, the partnership broke on the final ball before lunch, with Sharma taking Moeen out from a high ball.
England’s resistance then collapsed after lunch as Sharma went on a rampage. He bowled short ball after short ball and got what he wanted, reducing England from 173-4 to 201-8 in just 14 minutes. He also took Stuart Broad before a suicidal run from Jimmy Anderson meant he was run out by Jadeja.
It was a great win for India but it is a result that will plunge England into uncertainty. Alastair Cook said after the game that he will not resign as captain, but wicketkeeper Matt Prior has announced that he will not be available for the other games against India as he will be having treatment for injury.