Oval Test: Indian bowlers dominate in Day 1 of Cook’s final Test

London: England were on Friday restricted to 198 runs for the loss of seven wickets at stumps, Day 1, in the ongoing fifth and final Test match against India at the Oval cricket ground here.
A strong showing by the Indian pacers pegged back the hosts after they started well in opener Alastair Cook’s final match in the international stage.

Having won the toss, the hosts elected to bat first, with 33-year-old Cook receiving a guard of honour from the visiting team and a standing ovation from the Oval crowd.

Cook and Keaton Jennings fended off early threats from the Indian pacers and took England beyond the 50-run mark, just the second time in the series that the pair has amassed 50 runs between them.

Ravindra Jadeja orchestrated the first breakthrough for India with England’s score at 60 runs by dismissing Keaton Jennings (23 from 75), who flicked a ball down to K. L. Rahul at leg slip.
Moeen Ali was sent at number 3 and partnered a 73-run stand with Cook and saw off the Indian pacers’ threat till tea. The finals session saw the England batting spectacularly collapse, with the Indian pacers’ disciplined showing all day reaping rewards.

The first victim of the evening was Cook, as he dragged a Jasprit Bumrah delivery on to his stumps with the score at 133-2.

The left-handed opener, who famously captained his country to an away series victory against India in 2012 and is also England’s highest run scorer in Test match cricket with 12,254 runs in 160 matches, was the hosts’ best performer on the day with his knock of 71 runs from 190 balls, his 57th half century in Tests.

The score soon read 134-4 as Joe Root and Jonny Bairstow were dismissed for ducks in consecutive overs by Bumrah and the pick of Indian bowlers – Ishant Sharma respectively.

Ben Stokes (11 from 40) was scalped by Jadeja before Sharma sent England’s other half-centurion, Ali (50 from 170), packing. Sharma ended the day with figures of 3-28 in 22 overs with the dismissal of Sam Curran.

England have Joss Buttler (11 from 31) and Adil Rashid (4 from 25) at the crease, who will resume the host’s innings tomorrow.