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England 148/1 at lunch on day 2

India vs England

London: England captain Alastair Cook fought his way to another gritty half-century as home team reached a comfortable 148 for one against India at lunch, on the second of the fifth and final cricket Test, here today.

At the break, Cook was unbeaten on 56 with in-form Gary Ballance undefeated on 40 in an unbroken 82-run stand for the second wicket after Varun Aaron had removed opener Sam Robson (37) early in the day.

While Cook had six fours in 140 balls, fellow left-hander Ballance was more attacking having eight hits to the fence in 66 balls.

The Indian bowlers toiled hard but the conditions had changed quite a bit from the first day.

Bhuvneshwar Kumar (0-37), Varun Aaron (1-49), Ishant Sharma (0-23) and Stuart Binny (0-22) were all deployed to make use of a semi-new ball but only the one wicket was all that came through in the session. Ravichandran Ashwin (0-9) also bowled four overs.

The day started with England at 62/0 overnight, trailing only by 86 runs. India needed early breakthroughs to force the hosts onto the backfoot with Kumar starting proceedings.

And they did get a bright spark when in the second over of the day – 21st of the innings – Aaron bowled Sam Robson with quick straight delivery that beat the batsman.

The under-fire opening batsman scored 37 runs off 70 balls, including 6 boundaries, and added 66 runs for the first wicket with Cook.

It brought Ballance to the crease but he was quick to get off the mark and got a nice start first up to dash any hopes the Indians had of triggering a sudden collapse.

Brief Scores:

India: 148 all out

England: 148 for 1 wicket in 45 overs (Alastair Cook 56 batting, Gary Ballance 40 batting; Varun Aaron 1/49).


England 1st Innings (Overnight 62 for no loss):

Alastair Cook  batting        56 
Sam Robson b Aaron 37
Gary Ballance batting 40

Extras: (B-8 W-1 NB-6)                15

Total: (For 1 wkt in 45 overs)      148

Fall of wickets: 1/66

Bowling: Bhuvneshwar Kumar 13-2-37-0, Ishant Sharma 14-5-23-0, Varun Aaron 10-0-49-1, Stuart Binny 4-0-22-0, Ravichandran Ashwin 4-1-9-0.

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