England defeat India at Lord's, take 1-0 lead in series
India lose first Test by 196 runs as batsmen cave in against James Anderson and Stuart Broad's inspiring spells. Sanjjeev K Samyal reports. Scorecard | Cause for concern| How India lost the plotcricket Updated: Jul 26, 2011 09:13 IST
Sachin Tendulkar took 38 balls to move from 11 to 12. He scratched around for another 13 balls and was out off the next ball, after being dropped off the previous delivery.
Tendulkar was expected to lead India's fight on the final day, but it turned out to be a forgetful day for him.
In a way, his outing reflected the team's performance in the opening game of the four-Test series at Lord's. Record books suggest that bowling a side out twice at Lord's is not an easy task, but the India batsmen had to suffer this ignominy en route to a 196-run defeat.
Needing to bat out the final day with nine wickets in hand, Mahendra Singh Dhoni's boys were all out for 261. England lead the series 1-0 and fancy their chances of wresting the No. 1 Test rank, for which they will need to beat India by a two-match margin.Anderson stars
England's star of the day was James Anderson, who finished with figures of 28-7-65-5. Stuart Broad picked up three wickets.
Monday's turning point came when VVS Laxman and Gautam Gambhir perished in quick succession half-an-hour before lunch. The breakthrough came when Laxman was out for 56, pulling Anderson to the mid-wicket fielder, Ian Bell.
Starting the day at 80 for one, India were immediately pushed on the back-foot when first innings hero, Rahul Dravid, was out for the addition of just 14 runs to the total.
The trio of Anderson, Chris Tremlett and Broad cut down on pace and focussed on accuracy and movement. They concentrated on testing the batsman around the off-stump.
The ploy worked as the teasing line made Dravid edgy. With the score on 88, Tremlett had Dravid playing on to his pads and Alastair Cook, at short-leg, leapt high to get a hand to it, but could only get his fingertips to the ball.
The discipline was rewarded when the second highest run-getter in Test cricket was tempted by Anderson into hanging his bat out for an edge to the wicketkeeper.
A capacity crowd had queued up on the final day for what was a fascinating battle, worthy of the 2000th Test. And, it was taken forward by VVS Laxman and Gautam Gambhir. Laxman looked in sublime touch and worked the bowlers around effortlessly. At the other end, Gambhir and Graeme Swann engaged in a cat-and-mouse game.The off-spinner mixed it up, varying his length and spin, to keep Gambhir on his toes. On his part, the left-hander used his feet to force Swann to bowl a bit shorter.
Just when it looked like Gambhir had got a measure of the off-spinner, Swann produced a beauty to win a leg before verdict to reduce India to 135 for four.
Suresh Raina delayed the inevitable with a gritty innings of 78, but Anderson had him edge one to Matt Prior behind the stumps, with the score at 260, to bring the curtains down on India.
India will now be hoping that Zaheer Khan and other players carrying injuries are fit before they take the field in the second Test at Trent Bridge on Friday.
First Published: Jul 25, 2011 09:34 IST