Double strikes from Broad reduce India to 102/2 (Lunch Report)

July 23rd, 2011 - 8:20 pm ICT by IANS  

Gautam Gambhir London, July 23 (IANS) Fast bowler Stuart Broad re-discovered his length and mojo to dismiss India’s opening batsmen but Abhinav Mukund struck a fearless 49 as World No.1 Test side made 102 for two in the first innings, in response to England’s 474/ for eight declared, at lunch on the second day of the first cricket Test here Saturday.

Broad, who had a poor run of form in the series against Sri Lanka, produced an excellent delivery to get rid of Gautam Gambhir (15) and then induced Mukund with an away going delivery that the inexperienced southpaw dragged onto his stumps, denying himself a half-century at Lord’s.

Rahul Dravid was batting on 15 and Sachin Tendulkar 10 at the break. Tendulkar, who is on an unprecedented 99 hundreds, got a standing ovation as he came out to bat in the 100th Test between India and England and the 2000th Test in cricket history.

It was an un-yielding and a cracking first session’s play during which Enland bowlers extracted excellent movement from the track and kept the Indian batsmen guessing with their probing line and length.

India openers, resuming at overnight 17 for no loss, started cautiously and it took three maiden overs for the first runs to be scored as both James Anderson and Chris Tremlett were menacing in their opening spell.

Both Gambhir and Mukund left deliveries cautiously and showed the full blade only to the fuller deliveries. The first edge, however, flew off Mukund’s and it fell just short of Jonathan Trott at gully off Tremlett.

Two balls later, Tremlett floored the 21-year-old Mukund with a bouncer that brushed the grille. But Mukund was not ready to go down without a fight and opened up against Anderson with a four, flashing safely between gully and point.

Mukund then struck Tremlett for successive fours as the Surrey bowler strayed on to leg stump bringing up India’s 50.

Broad bowled much fuller and found his swing. He was finally rewarded after he swung back sharply to rattle the stumps of Gambhir, who had leaned on to a drive.

Gambhir’s dismissal brought Dravid to the crease for his one last appearance at Lord’s, where he made a classy 95 on debut in 1996.

The anxiety of getting a half-century at Lord’s got the better of Mukund and he gifted Broad his second wicket by dragging on to his off-stump an away going delivery.

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