IND vs ENG: Michael Atherton’s big compliment for Virat Kohli’s Team India, ‘To all intents, India should be 2-0 up’ – After two matches, Virat Kohli-led Team India have taken 1-0 lead in the five-match Test series. India were in a winning position in the first Test at Trent Bridge and found their way to win the 2nd Test despite starting the final day at Lord’s as underdogs. But India fought back to claim a historic 151-run win. Former England captain Michael Atherton is impressed with India’s intent on the pitch and the way they have fought back. Backing Kohli’s team, Atherton said, “India should be 2-0 up” in the series.
“Although home sensibilities will focus, inevitably, on England’s final day performance on Monday, which was by far unintilligent and then limp, it was India who left an indelible impression. The ferocity of their play, their will to win, and their skill to carry them through difficult moments, should have removed any doubts about how the Nottingham Test would have finished but for rain. To all intent and purposes, India should be 2-0 up,” Michael Atherton wrote in his column on The Times.
Reliving Lord’s triumph from the dressing room 👏 👏
— BCCI (@BCCI) August 17, 2021
IND vs ENG: England although began the series as heavy favourites due to familiar home conditions and a world-class pace bowling line-up besides Joe Root leading from the front with his willow. In many ways, Root was England’s Knight, leading a lone battle with his bat commanding every Indian bowler. That despite being praised for the relentless attack, India’s pace quartet could not get Root’s wicket as the England captain posted 180 with the team’s total reading 391.
IND vs ENG: Why Michael Atherton is all praise for Virat Kohli & Co?
- India were in a winning position in the 1st Test with 157 to chase with nine wickets in hand on Day 5. Had rain not played spoilsport, India could have taken a 1-0 lead.
- Considering it is England’s home conditions where England are dominant and familiar, they were expected to take a lead.
- Indian batsmen haven’t been in great form. The middle-order has especially struggled including Virat Kohli.
- England pace battery had enough firepower to bowl out India twice in a match. But going against the conventional approach, Indian batsmen had shown great focus and perfecting the “art of leaving”.
- India’s pace battery in all possible way bettered the likes of James Anderson, Stuart Broad and Ollie Robinson.
- Indian pacers hunted in packs and unsettled England batsmen, never giving them an opportunity to settle.
IND vs ENG: But despite his sole effort in the 1st innings, India found a way. From 209/8, Mohammed Shami and Jasprit Bumrah — India’s two unlikely heroes with the bat — commanded James Anderson, Ollie Robinson and Mark Wood. That in turn, changed the game, putting India in driver’s seat. Virat Kohli & Co had 60 overs to bowl out England after setting 272-run target and India’s pace quartet bowled them out for 120 runs, claiming a famous win.
However, Michael Atherton believes England will bounce back strongly and feels all is not lost despite several batsmen struggling and Stuart Broad, Chris Woakes and Jofra Archer out with injuries.
“Over two matches, England have competed for long periods, and this without some serious cricketers – Ben Stokes, Jofra Archer and Chris Woakes absent for two Tests and Stuart Broad for one. They have the benefit of two of their greatest cricketers, in James Anderson and Joe Root, and in Test cricket great players can make up a lot of ground for limitations elsewhere. All is not lost,” Michael Atherton said.