Tue, Jul 31, 2007 - Page 20 News List

England desperate to battle on and save second Test


England recovered from the early loss of opener Alastair Cook to reach 129 for one wicket at lunch against India yesterday, still 154 runs behind the tourists.

England resumed the fourth day of the second Test at Trent Bridge on 43-0, having started its second innings with a 283-run deficit. They added just six runs before Cook fell leg-before-wicket (lbw) to Zaheer Khan for 23.

Andrew Strauss moved to 54 and captain Michael Vaughan 36, but England must bat through the remaining two sessions and most of the final day to have a chance of saving the match.

The series is tied at 0-0 after rain saved India from an almost certain defeat in the first Test at Lord's, so the loser of the second Test would have to win the third and final at The Oval to level the series.

India bowlers Khan and Rudra Pratap Singh continued to find movement on Sunday, with Khan swinging the ball both ways.

Khan started his second over, and just the third of the day, by swinging a full, fast delivery wide and away from Cook.

He fooled Cook with the next ball, a straighter delivery that moved back the other way and hit the batsman on the pad to send him back to the pavilion.

It was the fourth time in four innings this series that Cook had been out lbw.

Vaughan joined Strauss at the crease and the pair guided England out of immediate danger with an unbroken 80-run second-wicket partnership.

The scoring rate dawdled along and India turned to the legbreaks of Anil Kumble and Sachin Tendulkar in an attempt to unsettle the pair, but the batsmen took no risks and made it to the interval.

Strauss made it to 50 for the 21st time in Tests along the way. He converted half his previous half-centuries into hundreds.

Vaughan almost dragged an inswinger by Sree Santh onto his stumps just before lunch while he was on 36, but there were few other scares.

England eventually bowled out India for 481 on Sunday. Sachin Tendulkar top scored with 91, while Sourav Ganguly and V.V.S. Laxman also struck half centuries.

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