England pace spearhead James Anderson has said his side could bowl out most of the opposition in conditions that were on offer on day two of the second England vs India Test at Lord’s. Under overcast conditions, the hosts made light work of India’s batting order, bowling out the visitors for a paltry 107.
Anderson led the attack brilliantly. He started the rot, bowling Murali Vijay for a duck with the fifth ball of the day with a ripper. A little later, the veteran sent back KL Rahul to leave India reeling at 10 for 2. After two stoppages to yet more rain, recalled Chris Woakes starred with the ball by picking the key wicket of Virat Kohli as well as Hardik Pandya’s to put England firmly on top.
Anderson then ended India’s hopes of making a decent score by dismissing Ajinkya Rahane. The right-arm pacer went on to clean up the tail to finish with stunning figures of 5 for 20. It was his sixth fifth-for at the Home of Cricket.
Speaking after the game, Anderson expressed his relief after making the most of the conditions that were on offer.
“Honestly, I’d have been so disappointed if I’d messed up today,” offered Anderson in his post-match press conference.
“To be honest, I think that if we bowled like that today, with those conditions, we’d bowl most teams in the world out – because I think we were that good,” he added. “We hardly bowled any bad balls, didn’t give them much to hit at all – and when you build pressure like that all day, no matter who you are around the world, it is difficult.
“I think if we were bowling at our batsmen, we’d have the better of them (too). We exploit those conditions as well as anyone in the world. I don’t think it’s just the Indian batsmen that would have struggled.”
Anderson further said that rain-breaks were frustrating.
But despite the constant rain-breaks, England never let India off the hook right from the time Joe Root won the toss and decided to field. The hosts struck at regular intervals, making it tough for India to stitch a partnership and post a good score. In the end, it took England only 35.2 overs to bowl out the world number one Test side.
“It’s frustrating when you’re on top, you want to stay out there and keep that pressure on the opposition,” said Anderson. “You feel like it’s a chance for them to regroup and come out to play better. But we coped with that long break really well, and when we came back out, we stuck to our task brilliantly.”
Anderson concluded by giving his team and the fans something more to smile, insisting that he still has a good amount of cricket left in him.
“All I think about is getting my body in as good a condition as it can be to cope with bowling out in the middle. I was delighted with how many overs I bowled at Edgbaston. For my body to get through that at this age I’m really happy with. I think I mean I’m doing the right stuff off the field.
“But I don’t think about numbers or my age, I feel like, I won’t say 28, but 32. I don’t feel old, I feel like I can still throw myself around in the field as well as anyone else so as long as I feel like that I’m just going to keep playing as long as possible. Hopefully the wickets will keep coming as well and I can help this team keep winning,” he said.