India vs England: Rain holds up start to Lord’s Test, fans pack in despite bleak weather forecast | cricket | Hindustan Times
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India vs England: Rain holds up start to Lord’s Test, fans pack in despite bleak weather forecast

More showers are forecast in the next few days, which leaves a question mark over whether the teams will get enough playing time to make a match of it.

cricket Updated: Aug 09, 2018 16:09 IST
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Cricket - England v India - Second Test - Lord’s, London, Britain - August 9, 2018 General view of covers on the pitch during a rain delay (Action Images via Reuters)

India skipper Virat Kohli and his England counterpart Joe Root will be happy they didn’t announce plans to play a second spinner in the second Test at Lord’s. After scorching heat that predicted a dry pitch, rain since early in the day ruled out the start of the highly anticipated game at least till late afternoon.

Thousands of fans streamed into the iconic venue on Thursday morning, but holding umbrellas as steady drizzle ruled out a prompt start to the game, after the thrilling first Test in Edgbaston last week had ended with the home team squeaking through by 31 runs.

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The formal jackets and ties were all over, but few held hopes of the weather relenting soon. The forecast for the day was around 80 percent precipitation until afternoon and a let up after that. Fans watched the bleak weather from the packed stands as security personnel who ushered them in kept muttering, ‘what a pity’.

England skipper Joe Root had announced the 12, leaving out only uncapped seamer Jamie Porter. It was a toss up between bowling all-rounder Chris Woakes and off-spinner Moeen Ali, but with the toss looking far away, and conditions promising to get more seamer-friendly, it would be surprising if England didn’t keep Ali out.

For India, it remains to be seen whether the team management would still rope in chinaman bowler Kuldeep Yadav. Skipper Virat Kohli had said on Wednesday that playing a second spinner was a “tempting” option, but it may not be that much anymore.

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Lord’s groundsmen were busy baling out water from the covers on the pitch and bowlers’ run-up. More showers are forecast in the next few days, which leaves a question mark over whether the teams will get enough playing time to make a match of it.

India, who won their last Test at the venue in 2014, are aiming to win their first Test series in England for 11 years. After a 1-0 win in 2007, they lost 0-4 in 2011 and 1-3 in 2014.

First Published: Aug 09, 2018 16:09 IST