Sole Ray of Hope

Motera – Zak Crawley was England’s sole ray of hope on the first day of the third Test. India dismissed England for 112 with Zak contributing 53 runs to this meagre total.

Joe Root won the toss and decided to bat in this day/night Test at the Sardar Patel Stadium.

Returning after an unfortunate wrist injury, Zak opened the batting with Dom Sibley. Sibley (0) and Bairstow (0) were back in the pavilion with just 37 balls of the innings bowled. England were 2-27, Zak having made 23 of these runs.

Zak refused to let the bowlers settle, his drives accumulating runs at a healthy rate. With Joe Root (17) at the other end, England started to build their innings.

Zak’s 50 (10 fours) came off 68 balls. It was his fifth half-century in 17 Test innings for England.

The Crawley-Root partnership added 47 for the third wicket before Joe fell to an LBW decision off the bowling of Ravichandran Ashwin. The partnership between Zak and Joe was to be the only substantial partnership of the innings.

Zak helped to move the score onto 80 before being adjudged LBW off Axar Patel. After making his debut in the second Test, Patel was already on his way to his second 5 wicket haul in two consecutive Tests.

In the forty-nineth over England last wicket fell for an inadequate 112 runs. In replay India were 99-3 at the close of play.

(PhoenixMedia Images Created from a Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images)