India followed their comeback win in the second Test of the ongoing five-match series against England with a miserable defeat in the third match at Headingly. India’s batting capitulated miserably in the first innings and they could never recover from there on. England took a huge lead and ended up winning the match by an innings and 76 runs.
There was a pattern within most of India’s dismissals. More than 50% of the wickets were either caught behind by Jos Buttler or by one of the fielders in the slip cordon. Former cricketer Sunil Gavaskar pointed this out as a cause of concern in the post-match show.
“That would concern everybody because despite the fact the lines that England bowlers bowled were outstanding lines, around the fourth and fifth stump which is difficult for the batsmen, but when the lengths were a little further up, they got the wickets.
“When you bowl short of the length, every batsman has the time to play or leave it. Once the batsmen were drawn forward, there’s not much you can do and that is where the bat speed factor comes in.”, said the cricketer-turned-commentator.
He explained that credit should be given to the bowlers for bowling good lengths outside the off stump and mentioned that the batsmen should not have attempted to defend those balls and just let the ball run to the wicket keeper.
Virat Kohli was dismissed in the same fashion and has fallen victim to deliveries bowled outside the off stump. A similar thing can be said for the likes of Cheteshwar Pujara and Ajinkya Rahane. Rahane was caught by Jos Buttler in both the innings, while each of Pujara, Pant and Jadeja were caught by the wicket keeper once each.
England levelled the series after the massive win at Leeds. The next test will begin on second September at the Oval. India will be keen on improving on their batting display from the last test and hope to avoid being dismissed in the same fashion.