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India vs England - Nagpur Test Match

March 1-5 2006
Vidarbha Cricket Association Ground, Nagpur
Toss: England won the toss and decided to bat
Umpires: Aleem Dar, I L Howell

Nagpur Test Start

England facing tough India opener

Injury-hit England are set for their toughest task yet as they open their three-match Test series against India on Wednesday. England head into the opening match in Nagpur, aiming to win their first Test series in India in 21 years. The team's last victory came in 1985 when David Gower's side triumphed 2-1. But all-rounder Andrew Flintoff makes debut as captain, with skipper Michael Vaughan, Marcus Trescothick and Simon Jones all missing from the squad. The tourists certainly face a daunting challenge as they struggle to overcome a series of injury setbacks and get to grips with the conditions in India. Vaughan was ruled out with a knee injury two days after vice captain Trescothick withdrew for personal reasons, while fast bowler Jones became the latest casualty when he twisted his left knee in the nets on Monday.

Nagpur Test First Day

England toss away Test initiative

England squandered the chance to seize the initiative after winning the toss in Nagpur as they stumbled to 246-7 at the end of the first day's play.
Debutant Alastair Cook (60) and Paul Collingwood each hit half-centuries but a number of promising partnerships were nipped in the bud by India. The most valuable stand was one worth 67 between Collingwood (53 not out) and stand-in captain Andrew Flintoff (43). Left-arm seamer Irfan Pathan took three wickets for the hosts.
Early on, England were impressive. Flintoff, taking over as captain in the absence of Michael Vaughan and Marcus Trescothick, looked visibly relieved to have called correctly after the toss. Openers Cook and Andrew Strauss were into their stride quickly.
India broke through just after the hour mark with the total on 56 when Sreesanth, with the seventh ball of his second spell, ended Strauss' innings on 28. The Middlesex man drove at a wide ball which flew at pace towards VVS Laxman's throat. The fielder reacted swiftly to take the catch.
Pathan, bowling with the second new ball, got one to straighten a little but although it may have flicked pad before bat, it seemed to be missing off stump. As the shadows lengthened, Collingwood hit the day's only six by mowing Kumble over mid-wicket.
But India went into the dressing-room by far the happier of the two sides - particularly after Blackwell had inside-edged Pathan onto his stumps via a flat-footed drive.

Nagpur Test Second Day

England fight back to check India

England's Paul Collingwood hit a fine maiden Test century before Indian pair Wasim Jaffer and Rahul Dravid put the hosts back on top in Nagpur. Jaffer (73 not out) and Dravid (40, also unbeaten) led the hosts to a solid score of 136-1 at stumps on day two after England had finished on 393.
Earlier, Collingwood, who started the day on 53 in a score of 246-7, had rescued a dire situation for England. The Durham ace helped put on 126 for the last two wickets with Steve Harmison (39) and Monty Panesar (9).
Panesar then bowled two overs before tea and gave opening batsman Wasim Jaffer (28 not out) a torrid time. After lunch Collingwood hit his fourth and final six when smashing Irfan Pathan back over his head.
His 66-run partnership with Panesar finally ended when Sreesanth had England's numer 11 lbw with a yorker.
The tourists only had to wait until the third over for their first wicket when a flat-footed Sehwag drove a slower delivery to an elated Kevin Pietersen at cover.
First Test, Nagpur: England 393; India 136-1 (day two, stumps)

Nagpur Test Third Day

England 393 India 322-9: Five-star Hoggard leads England fightback

Steve Harmison and Monty Panesar took vital late wickets on day three as England revived their hopes of winning the first Test against India in Nagpur.
Matthew Hoggard claimed a five-wicket haul as England prospered at both ends of the third day in the Nagpur Test. Yorkshire swing bowler Hoggard, so often England's unsung hero, struck three times in his opening three overs to unhinge the Indian top order and struck again early in the middle session to reduce the home team took to 190 for seven. Although they had not reached the follow-on target at that juncture, a 128-run stand, equalling the highest for an Indian eighth-wicket pair against England, between Mohammad Kaif and Anil Kumble redressed the situation.
With England still leading by 71 runs, they are the team with the advantage.
First Test, Nagpur: England 393; India 322-9 (day three, stumps)

Nagpur Test Fourth Day

England take firm control of first Test

After a calculated assault by Kevin Pietersen, the slow but sure progression of Alastair Cook to a hundred in his first Test, and shoddy outcricket by India, England built themselves into an impregnable position with one day to go. With the wicket now turning significantly, they must hope theres enough time tomorrow to bowl India out for victory.
Alastair Cook became the 15th Englishmen to score a hundred on test debut and at 21 years 69 days the youngest since David Gower to score a century for England. There was just time for Collingwood to larrup 14 off a solitary over from Sehwag before the close of a day that was emphatically Englands throughout.

England (393 & 297-3) lead India (323) by 367 runs (Close, day four)

Nagpur Test Fifth Day

Jaffer slams maiden ton but Nagpur test drawn

Indian opening batsman Wasim Jaffer stroked his maiden hundred before the first test against England ended in an exciting draw on the final day on Sunday. The match was finely balanced when play was called off due to bad light, India needing 108 runs from 11.4 overs and England seeking four wickets. India were 260 for six at the end. The 28-year-old Jaffer made exactly 100 and gathered 167 runs in a cautious second wicket partnership with captain Rahul Dravid (71) after England set an improbable fourth innings target of 368.
India suddenly shifted gears in a bid for a shock victory after reaching tea on 131 one, still 237 runs away with a tame draw appearing imminent. Dravid and Jaffer were out in quick succession, but the promoted Irfan Pathan (35 off 25 balls) and Mahendra Dhoni (16 off 21 balls) attempted a one-day style run chase.
England captain Andrew Flintoff and fellow paceman Steve Harmison shared two wickets apiece to survive the scare after declaring their second innings at the overnight 297-3.

Scores: England 393 (P.Collingwood 134 not out, A.Cook 60; S.Sreesanth 4-95) and 297-3 declared (A.Cook 104 not out, K.Pietersen 87); India 323 (M.Kaif 91, W.Jaffer 81; M.Hoggard 6-57) and 260 for six (W.Jaffer 100, R.Dravid 71).


India drew with England
England won the toss and decided to bat
393 all out (127.5 overs)
297 for 3 (87.0 overs)
323 all out (136.5 overs)
260 for 6 (78.2 overs)

England 1st Innings
A J Strauss c V V S Laxman b S Sreesanth
64 5 0
A N Cook
b I K Pathan
160 7 0
I R Bell c R Dravid b Harbhajan Singh
28 2 0
K P Pietersen
b S Sreesanth
33 2 0
P D Collingwood not out
252 13 4
A Flintoff lbw b A Kumble
70 6 0
G O Jones lbw b I K Pathan
30 3 0
I D Blackwell
b I K Pathan
16 0 0
M J Hoggard c M S Dhoni b S Sreesanth
41 1 0
S J Harmison st M S Dhoni b Harbhajan Singh
42 7 0
M S Panesar lbw b S Sreesanth
43 1 0
12nb 1w 7b 7lb 27
all out 393

I K Pathan 23.0 5 92 3
S Sreesanth 28.5 6 95 4
Harbhajan Singh 34.0 5 93 2
A Kumble 40.0 13 88 1
S R Tendulkar 2.0 0 11 0
Fall of wicket
56 A J Strauss
81 I R Bell
110 K P Pietersen
136 A N Cook
204 A Flintoff
225 G O Jones
244 I D Blackwell
267 M J Hoggard
327 S J Harmison
393 M S Panesar

India 1st Innings
W Jaffer c A Flintoff b M J Hoggard
184 15 0
V Sehwag c K P Pietersen b M J Hoggard
6 0 0
R Dravid lbw b M J Hoggard
122 6 0
S R Tendulkar lbw b M S Panesar
45 2 0
V V S Laxman lbw b M J Hoggard
1 0 0
M Kaif
b M S Panesar
263 12 0
M S Dhoni c G O Jones b A Flintoff
10 1 0
I K Pathan c A Flintoff b M J Hoggard
14 0 0
A Kumble c A N Cook b S J Harmison
168 10 0
Harbhajan Singh not out
4 0 0
S Sreesanth lbw b M J Hoggard
6 0 0
2nb 5w 17b 3lb 27
all out 323

M J Hoggard 30.5 13 57 6
S J Harmison 27.0 5 75 1
A Flintoff 29.0 10 68 1
M S Panesar 42.0 19 73 2
I D Blackwell 7.0 0 28 0
I R Bell 1.0 0 2 0
Fall of wicket
11 V Sehwag
140 R Dravid
149 W Jaffer
149 V V S Laxman
176 S R Tendulkar
183 M S Dhoni
190 I K Pathan
318 A Kumble
322 M Kaif
323 S Sreesanth

England 2nd Innings
A J Strauss c M S Dhoni b I K Pathan
113 6 0
A N Cook not out
243 12 0
I R Bell c M S Dhoni b I K Pathan
2 0 0
K P Pietersen c R Dravid b A Kumble
110 14 1
P D Collingwood not out
56 4 1
2nb 2w 12b 7lb 23
for 3 297

I K Pathan 14.0 2 48 2
S Sreesanth 10.0 2 36 0
A Kumble 32.0 8 101 1
Harbhajan Singh 30.0 6 79 0
V Sehwag 1.0 0 14 0
Fall of wicket
95 A J Strauss
97 I R Bell
221 K P Pietersen

India 2nd Innings
W Jaffer c A J Strauss b A Flintoff
198 12 0
V Sehwag
b M J Hoggard
13 0 0
R Dravid
b M S Panesar
187 10 0
I K Pathan c A J Strauss b A Flintoff
25 4 1
M S Dhoni c A J Strauss b S J Harmison
21 1 0
S R Tendulkar not out
19 5 0
Harbhajan Singh
b S J Harmison
7 1 0
3lb 3
for 6 260

M J Hoggard 16.0 7 29 1
S J Harmison 17.2 4 48 2
A Flintoff 17.0 2 79 2
M S Panesar 16.0 2 58 1
I D Blackwell 12.0 2 43 0
Fall of wicket
1 V Sehwag
168 R Dravid
198 W Jaffer
215 I K Pathan
252 M S Dhoni
260 Harbhajan Singh

Indian Cricket Team for Nagpur Test

V Sehwag, W Jaffer, R Dravid, S R Tendulkar, V V S Laxman, M Kaif, M S Dhoni, I K Pathan, A Kumble, Harbhajan Singh, S Sreesanth

England Cricket Team for Nagpur Test

A J Strauss, A N Cook, I R Bell, P D Collingwood, K P Pietersen, A Flintoff, G O Jones, I D Blackwell, S J Harmison, M J Hoggard, M S Panesar

The Venue

Vidarbha Cricket Association Ground, Nagpur

England will not get many pitches that suit them in India, but the one in Nagpur that hosts the first Test can offer pace and movement for seamers.
Jason Gillespie took nine wickets as Australia bundled out the hosts for scores of 185 and 200 in October 2004.
More worryingly for England, Sachin Tendulkar Sachin Tendulkar's Site has had three centuries in seven innings here, averaging 105.83.
In a 1995 one-day match against New Zealand, a brick wall on the East stand collapsed, killing nine people.

Editor: Nishanth Gopinathan.