England defeated India in the first Test of the four-match series being played at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai. It was a clinical performance from the visitors as they focused on the home side’s weak points and made the maximum of the luck that they received at the start.
Captain Joe Root started on the right foot, by calling the coin toss in his favor. And then England decided to bat India out of the game, as they batted almost two full days and scored 578 runs. They were led by Root himself, who made 218, while Dom Sibley made 87, and Ben Stokes contributed 82 runs to the cause.
India just couldn’t keep up with the brilliant bowling from Jofra Archer, James Anderson, Jack Leach, and Dom Bess, and even Ben Stokes got involved. They made 337 in the first innings, a score buoyed by half-centuries from Cheteshwar Pujara, Rishabh Pant, and Washington Sundar.
England made 178 in the second do and set India a target of 420 runs. India capitulated in front of a brilliant spell from James Anderson, as they lost their spine despite Virat Kohli doing well in the chase, but they could only make 192 and lost the match by 227 runs.
Also Read: India vs England 2021: Rishabh Pant Is Still An Infant When It Comes To Wicketkeeping, Feels Syed Kirmani
Let’s see the 3 main reasons why India faltered against England in Chennai and lost the first Test.
1 – Poor batting from main batsmen
India had a daunting task of England’s 578 in their first innings and they needed their openers to do well and give them a good start. However, Jofra Archer removed Rohit Sharma early to peg India back. While Shubman Gill looked golden during his 28-ball stay, he threw his wicket away going for an expansive drive.
Virat Kohli and Ajinkya Rahane, two of the most experienced batsmen in the team and the captain and vice-captain of the Indian national cricket team, failed in the first innings, while Rahane returned a 0 in the second as well. If it had not been for Cheteshwar Pujara (73), Rishabh Pant (91), and Washington Sundar (85*), the Indian team might have gifted England a lead of more than 241 runs.
The story repeated in the second innings as well, as Rohit fell early again, while Cheteshwar Pujara (15), Rishabh Pant (11), and others failed again, while Virat Kohli stood like a rock with a 104-ball 72. He tried his best to put some resistance, but in the end, got no help from others and India folded for 192, losing the match by 227 runs.
Had the likes of Rohit Sharma, Ajinkya Rahane, and Rishabh Pant batted with more responsibility, things could have been different. Rohit failed to give a good start to the Indian team, while Rishabh Pant threw his wicket away at 91, despite many defending his strokeplay as “just how he bats.”
And Ajinkya Rahane needs to carry his weight in the team with the bat, as he has done very little since scoring a century in MCG.