Saturday, 8 December 2012

India Vs England: Kolkata Day Three

Joyously for England it was a case of more of the same in Kolkata today as Alastair Cook continued to pile on the runs and Jonathan Trott joined in for the first time this series.
The pair took England passed the total score managed by the Indian team and their fans must have been wondering where a breakthrough would come from. After adding 173 Trott went for 87 as he followed a turner from Pragyan Ojha giving MS Dhoni a regulation catch and finally a chance to smile.
A bigger celebration came seven overs later in bizarre circumstances as Alastair Cook had perhaps the first lapse in concentration of his entire life when he wandered down the track and did not manage to ground his bat before jumping to avoid a throw from square leg by Virat Kohli which hit the stumps and sent the captain back to the pavilion for 190.
The opportunities to celebrate were few and far between for India however as England managed to avoid losing wickets in clusters as they had in the first match of the series, Kevin Pietersen registering another half century before playing one sweep too many and Samit Patel chipping in with 33.
Ian Bell was the only real failure as he gifted his wicket to Ishant Sharma, who had earlier dropped the easiest of return chances when Cook was on 156. Bell’s troubles against the spinners have been well documented so it will be especially galling to fall so tamely to a seamer.
Matt Prior was again in the mood for runs and punished the tiring Indians adding an unbroken stand of 56 with Graeme Swann and taking the lead to 193 by the close, smashing an imperious six off Ishant which really summed up the day for India.
Tomorrow England are likely to come out swinging as their last three batsmen are unlikely to contribute too much, but an additional 50 runs could be the difference between an easy target to chase and one that might give India a little something to work with.

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