India all set to win Test series against England in Mumbai

 

virat kohli 

By Kersi Meher-Homji

As India under the dynamic skipper Virat Kohli gets ready to play the fourth Test against England in Mumbai on Thursday I remember the December 1951Test I had watched between India and England in Bombay (now Mumbai).

A Test in Mumbai makes me feel nostalgic. I fondly remember the first ever Test I had ever seen. And it was at Brabourne Stadium in Bombay.

Can’t believe that it was 65 years ago, and I remember it as it was yesterday! Are you ready for some nostalgia?

India’s captain Vijay Hazare won the toss and decided to bat. Opening batsman Pankaj Roy (140 runs) and Hazare (155 run out) added 187 runs for the third wicket and India declared at 9 for 485. It was Hazare’s second century in two Tests, having hit 164 not out in the previous Test in Delhi.

No wonder Hazare became my hero then and still remains my hero number one.

With tall Tom Graveney hitting an elegant 175, England replied with 456, spinning all-rounder Vinoo Mankad taking 4 for 91. I still remember Mankad dropping Graveney when he was on 99. A 12 year-old Kersi was devastated!

The Test was eventually drawn but a cricket lover was born.

Now to the current series which India leads 2-0 with two Tests to go. After the first Test at Rajkot was drawn, India won the second Test at Visakhapatnam by 246 runs and the third Test at Mohali by eight wickets to convincingly lead the series 2-0.

Kohli is the highest run-scorer, 405 runs at a fantastic average of 101.25 (with one century and two fifties). He is followed by Cheteshwar Pujara, 338 runs at 56.33 with two centuries and one fifty. Then comes England’s Joe Root, 299 runs at 49.83 with one century and two fifties.

England’s leg-spinner Adil Rashid is the leading wicket-taker, 18 wickets at 28.66 followed by India’s off-spinner Ravi Ashwin, 15 wickets at 31.53.

Ashwin is the all-rounder of the current series having also amassed 239 runs at 47.80.

Thus India has outplayed England so far. But still two Tests remain, in Bombay starting on Thursday and the final Test at Chennai commencing on 16th December.

 

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