Ben Stokes knocks over Rohit with 1st ball in 9 months; McCullum, Wood stupefied | Crickit

Ben Stokes reaction-less on wrecking Rohit Sharma's stumps with first ball in 8 months; Wood, McCullum left stupefied

Mar 08, 2024 01:11 PM IST

Ben Stokes produced a “magic ball” to dismiss Rohit Sharma on his first ball of the series against India.

During the Test series between India and England, there was considerable anticipation surrounding Ben Stokes potentially assuming a prominent role in bowling. Despite the speculation, Stokes didn't take up the task in the initial four Tests. However, in the final match in Dharamsala, with the visitors in dire need of a breakthrough, the English captain decided to step up with the ball. And his decision proved to be decisive straightaway, as he immediately made a remarkable impact.

Brendon McCullum (L) is shocked at Ben Stokes' wicket-taking delivery of Rohit Sharma(X)
Brendon McCullum (L) is shocked at Ben Stokes' wicket-taking delivery of Rohit Sharma(X)

On Day 2 of the final Test, India were dominating as captain Rohit Sharma and Shubman Gill stood firm, both reaching their centuries during the opening session. Sensing the urgency, Stokes opted to bowl in the 62nd over. His decision paid off brilliantly when he delivered a fiery delivery that dismantled Rohit's stumps, leaving not just the Indian captain in awe but also surprising Stokes' own teammates and coach Brendon McCullum with its sheer brilliance.

Also read Shubman Gill's father can't control emotions as son bows to him after smashing 4th century in 5th Test vs England

Pitching the ball on a perfect length, he generated movement both inwards and away from the batter off the pitch. Caught off-guard, Rohit left his bat hanging without any footwork, allowing the ball to zip past the outside edge and crash into the off stump. Sanjay Manjrekar, commentating on air, dubbed it a “magic ball.”

And magic, it was. Mark Wood, the fast bowler who was yet to get a wicket in the innings, was awestruck as he put his hands over his mouth, while McCullum, too, buried his face in shock in the dressing room.


One brings two, and that is exactly what happened in the very next over when James Anderson castled Shubman Gill on 110. Anderson extracted reverse swing as the ball sneaked through the bat-pad gate of Gill.

The Indian team had made a strong start to the Test after bundling the English team out for just 218, and finishing Day 1 on 135/1 after Yashasvi Jaiswal (57) and Rohit Sharma smashed half-centuries. Rohit reached his 12th century during the opening session of Day 2 and was dismissed on 103 off 162 deliveries.

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