Anderson swings day two in England's favour before rain brings India respite

By Sports Desk August 05, 2021

Two James Anderson wickets helped England wrestle back some control on the second day of the first Test against India at Trent Bridge.

A dismal day one batting display saw the hosts all out for 183 before India made 21 without loss in reply.

But a productive spell either side of lunch on Thursday, led by bowling great Anderson, brought Joe Root's men back into the reckoning.

Anderson removed Cheteshwar Pujara and old foe Virat Kohli in quick succession, although bad light and rain soon intervened and allowed India to reach the end of play on 125-4.

The tourists had withstood early England pressure and looked on course to finish the first session still unbeaten until Ollie Robinson's short ball – the final delivery before lunch – tempted Rohit Sharma to pick out Sam Curran at the boundary.

Anderson maintained England's momentum following the restart with two wickets in as many balls, including a popular golden duck for captain Kohli, who edged behind.

KL Rahul reached fifty as India sought to regroup, only to then have partner Ajinkya Rahane run out by a clinical direct hit from Jonny Bairstow.

Dom Sibley put down Rishabh Pant from a simple chance and rain fell to further frustrate a resurgent England, who returned twice – first for a single ball and then for two – before heading back to the dressing room again, with play eventually abandoned.

A TIMELY BOWLING BOOST

England were on course to reach the end of the morning session without reward and worse news would great supporters during the interval, with confirmation Jofra Archer will miss the rest of the year, including the Ashes tour of Australia.

How Root could have used the paceman's inspiration as his side started to toil again, staring down the barrel of a fifth defeat in six Tests in their worst barren run since 2018.

Robinson's much-needed breakthrough, in his second match at this level, belatedly provided cause for optimism.

MILESTONE MADE IN STYLE

Anderson's second wicket took him level with Anil Kumble on 619 in Tests, the third-most in history. Of those, 120 have come against India – his most against any team and the most by any player in the men's format – and six have come against Kohli, although this was the first in their rivalry since 2014.

The wicket brought relief then for Anderson, while it was Kohli's fifth Test golden duck, of which three have come in England against England. Indeed, Stuart Broad had Kohli caught behind first ball in his previous away innings against England back in 2018.

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