India vs England: What to expect on Day 2 of Vizag Test
With the match only 90 overs and another possible 360 more, the Vizag Test can witness many twists and turns.
New Delhi: India, thanks to two hundreds from Cheteshwar Pujara and Virat Kohli, have taken the Day 1 honours of the second Test against England at Visakhapatnam on Thursday. At stumps, India were 317/4, a good score for any Test.
But the match is only 90 overs old, with another possible 360 more left in the Vizag Test. With that, let's have a look at possible scenarios which are likely on unfold on Day 2.
Scenario 1: India tightening the screws
With a determined Kohli ready to bat for a long time, India are likely to post a big first innings total in Vizag. If the 28-year manages to bat through the day, another 300-odd runs will come India's way, which means, England batting to save the match.
For India to post a first innings total in excess of 500, Kohli will still need more than a steady company. Another unbeaten batsman, Ravichandran Ashwin, is a capable hand. The all-rounder anointed spinner already has four Test hundreds, and his play will be crucial to India's fortunes.
If either of these two fails, India's focus will be on Wriddhiman Saha and up to some extent Ravindra Jadeja. For India to dictate terms in the match, lower order will need to contribute heavily.
Scenario 2: England fight back
For England to put a stop on India's march in the first innings, the visitors will need one of the their spinners to stand up and deliver. James Anderson, alone, can't achieve their team goal. England captain Alastair Cook utilised three tweakers, in Zafar Ansari, Adil Rashid and Moeen Ali on day 1 without success.
An early wicket tomorrow will help England, and the bowler to provide that breakthrough is likely to be Anderson again, considering Cook took the second new ball towards the fag end of day 1's play. Anderson getting a good helping hand from the spinners augur well for them.
England bowlers struggled on the first day, even though Anderson got three wickets. The Vizag top is evidently not a rank turner, and it looked a sporting one, meaning, spinners will get assistance as the game wears on.
Scenario 3: Sharing the spoil
India failing to post more than 400 runs and England seeing out the day without losing a wicket would mean that the match hangs in a balance. Taking a cue from the first Test, England batting line-up looks certainly confident, and the likes of Cook, Haseeb Hameed and Joe Root can negate the Indian dominance derived from the batting of Kohli and Pujara with their own willow talks.
Then, there's this concern of Aswhin failing to pick wickets. If the world's premier spinner comes short again, then Kohli will find it hard to go for an all-out attack.
All in all, it will be another day of enthralling cricket in the coastal city of Vizag.