Former captain Mohammad Azharuddin has hit out at Team India after their batting collapsed inexplicably on Day 4 of the Headingley Test. Azhar lamented the fact that the visitors couldn’t take the fight to the last day.
Team India resumed their second innings at Headingley on 215 for 2. However, they failed to last even the first session on Day 4, folding up tamely for 278 as Ollie Robinson claimed a five-for.
Taking to his Twitter account, Azhar lashed out at Team India’s batters, describing their performance as 'inept'. The former India captain wrote in this regard:
“Lack of technique & application to play swing led to an inept batting display by India. At the least, we could have batted much better & taken the match to Day 5. Definitely a day to forget.”
Team India lost Cheteshwar Pujara lbw to Robinson before he could add to his overnight score of 91. Captain Virat Kohli also perished to the same bowler after scoring his fifty.
Vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane and Rishabh Pant also failed, and the tail,l too, did not offer any resistance. Team India survived less than 20 overs on Day 4 as England squared the five-match series at one apiece. India were earlier bowled out for 78 in the first innings.
Team India captain credits England's bowlers after abject surrender
Team India captain Virat Kohli hailed England's bowlers for creating constant pressure and not allowing the batters any breathing space.
While Robinson stood out for England with five wickets, Craig Overton also chipped in with three scalps in Team India’s second innings. Praising England’s pacers at the post-match conference, Virat Kohli conceded:
"Basically, it was down to scoreboard pressure. You're always up against it when you get out for under 80, and the opposition puts up such a big score. But we did well to stay in the game yesterday, fight back as much as we could, and gave ourselves a chance. But the pressure today was outstanding from the England bowlers, and eventually they got the results they wanted.”
Trying to make sense of Team India's first-innings batting collapse, Kohli added:
"Quite bizarre, batting collapses can happen in this country. We thought the pitch was good to bat on, coming on nicely. But their discipline forced us into mistakes, and the pressure was relentless. It's difficult to cope when you're not scoring runs. That caused the batting order to crumble.”
Team India will need to get their act together before the fourth Test, which starts at The Oval on September 2.
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