The Virat Kohli-led unit was thoroughly outplayed in all the departments of the game by a rampant English team right from the very outset. Having won the toss, England ground the Indian bowling attack into dust thanks to a patient 87 by Dom Sibley, an outstanding double-ton by Joe Root, and a counter-attacking half-century by Ben Stokes.
With the pitch expected to deteriorate on the final two days, it was imperative that India batted well in the first innings and eke out as many runs as possible in response to England’s 578.
However, the top-order barring Cheteshwar Pujara failed to come to the party and it was really the innings of Rishabh Pant and Washington Sundar that took India past the 300-run-mark.
India bowled well in the second innings as they dismissed England for 178 but with the visitors having taken an overall lead of 420, it meant that the home side would have to bat out of their skin to salvage a draw, which they didn’t as James Anderson and Jack Leach ran riot on the final day to complete the demolition job.
How can India qualify for the ICC World Test Championship final?
As a result, India, who came into the first Test with a PCT of 71.7 (430 points) has now dropped to the fourth spot with their percentage points plummeting to 68.3.
However, India still has more than a chance to book their spot in the ICC World Test Championship final. But for that to happen, they will have to ensure that they win at least two Tests out of the next three.
If India wins the four-match series by a margin of 2-1 or 3-1, then they will leapfrog both Australia and England to join New Zealand for the summit clash at Lord’s.
However, India cannot afford to lose a single game from now on as even a 2-2 draw wouldn’t be enough for them to qualify. If they end up drawing the series 1-1 or 2-2, then Australia will qualify ahead of India and England.
Qualification scenarios for the #WTC21 finals:
India can still qualify if…
England qualify if…
Australia qualify if…
— ICC (@ICC) February 9, 2021