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Monday, June 24, 2024

Pope, Hartley shine as England STUN India in Hyderabad

Srinagar: England stunned hosts India to snatch a incredible win in the first Test at Hyderabad on Sunday.

It was Ollie Pope’s 196 followed by a seven-wicket haul from debutant Tom Hartley that helped England win.

Having conceded a first-innings lead of 190, England looked down and out of the Hyderabad Test, but made a remarkable comeback with Ollie Pope and Tom Hartley leading them to an unlikely victory.

The odds seemed stacked against the visitors as they came out to bat a second time in Hyderabad with India’s potent three-prong spin attack and the menacing Jasprit Bumrah waiting for them.

But a brilliant 196 from Pope, the fourth-highest score in a team’s second innings of a Test by an away batter in India, helped England set India a target of 231.

With Jack Leach not fully fit, England were reliant on the young spinners Rehan Ahmed and Tom Hartley. The latter, who was on his Test debut, was smashed for 131 runs in 25 overs in the first innings, but stepped up in the fourth innings for the visitors.

Hartley picked each of the first four Indian wickets to fall, sending back the likes of Yashasvi Jaiswal, Shubman Gill, Rohit Sharma and Axar Patel.

KL Rahul was trapped in from from around the wicket by Joe Root and Ravindra Jadeja was run out by a spectacular bit of fielding from skipper Ben Stokes.

When Shreyas Iyer nicked Leach to the slip fielder, India were 119/7 and nearly out of the game.

Ravichandran Ashwin and Srikar Bharat, the latter fresh off another fighting fourth-innings knock for India A against England Lions, pulled India back into the game a bit with a half-century stand, but it was Hartley again that broke India’s resistance when he had Bharat cleaned up with a peach.

Ashwin was stumped out the next over off Hartley and the left-arm spinner had taken his sixth in the game. Hartley added another, the final Indian wicket to fall, to finish with figures of 7/62.

Hartley is the fifth visiting bowler on Test debut to take six or more wickets in a Test in India. The last one to do so was Todd Murphy of Australia last year.

With the win, England now have their third win in the current World Test Championship cycle. India, meanwhile, slip to fifth in the points table with the loss. England remain at No.8 in the standings despite this being their third win after slow over-rates saw them lose 19 points during the Ashes series.

This is just India’s third loss in a home Test match since 2019. They still have four Tests to come back in this series and rise back up the WTC table.

The next Test will be played in Vizag followed by three more matches in Rajkot, Ranchi and Dharamsala.

Courtesy: ICC

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