India v England: Throwback Test moments in India

India v England: Throwback Test moments in India

India and England are facing each other on Indian soil since 1933. During 88 years of this rivalry, there were 60 Test matches played between these two teams on India’s various grounds. Let us look at some of the most memorable matches from this rivalry.

India vs. England at Bombay Gymkhana, 1933

After India’s Test debut at Lord’s in 1932, the game’s popularity among the Indians increased manifold. And when Douglas Jardin’s MCC squad travelled to India to play three Test matches next year, there was nationwide interest and fan following. The first Test started on 15th December at the Bombay Gymkhana ground. During that time, it was the prime centre of cricket in India, and hence rightly, it was selected as the venue for the first Test on Indian soil.

Indian captain CK Nayudu won the toss and opted to bat. The debutant Lala Amarnath top-scored with 38. Syed Wazir Ali (36) and Sorabji Colah (31) were the other players to reach 30 as India were bowled out for 219. James Langridge, Hedley Verity, and Stan Nichols got 3 wickets each. England replied with 438 as another debutant Bryan Valentine scored 136. For India, Mohammad Nissar got a 5-wicket haul as the 41-years old debutant Rustamji Jamshedji picked up 3 wickets.

India’s second innings was memorable for Amarnath’s maiden Test century. This was the first Test century by an Indian and got a massive response from the delighted fans. He and captain Nayudu (67) added 186 runs in the third wicket but did not get much support from others as India were all out for 258. England easily chased down the target of 40 and won by 9 wickets.

India vs. England at MA Chidambaram Stadium, 1952

After 20 years of their first Test match, India recorded their first Test win in their 25th attempt. Batting first, England could score 266 runs with the fifties from Jack Robertson (77) and Dick Spooner (66) as Vinoo Mankad picked up 8 for 55.

During India’s innings, Pankaj Roy (111) and Polly Umrigar (130) scored two fine centuries to provide India with close to 200 runs. English captain Donald Carr used seven bowlers, including himself but could not get all 10 Indian wickets as they declared at 457 for 9.

In the second innings, England was folded for 183 runs, with Robertson being the highest scorer with 56. Indian spinner duo Mankad and Ghulam Ahmed proved to be deadly on a day 4 pitch as the pair picked up 8 wickets between them. Mankad finished with 12 wickets in the match and proved his supremacy as the leading Indian all-rounder of that era.

India vs. England at MA Chidambaram Stadium, 2008

This Test match was significant for various reasons. The English team was touring India from early November, playing the ODI series. But the horrible ’26/11 Mumbai Attacks’ forced the team to return home without completing the tour.

Once the situation was in control, ECB agreed to return to continue the rest of the tour. They and the BCCI designed an updated schedule cancelling the last two ODIs and made it a 2-Test match series.

An emotionally charged up match started on 11th December at Chennai. England batted first and posted 316 runs in their first innings thanks to 123 from their captain Andrew Strauss. India replied with a below-par 241 as no one except the captain MS Dhoni (53) could pass 50.

Indian bowlers tried hard in their second innings but could not stop Strauss from scoring the match’s second hundred. Paul Collingwood also added a century as they declared on 311/9, setting up a target of 387 for the Indians.

Virender Sehwag provided a great start to the Indian chase later on day four. Instead of focussing on survival, he and Gautam Gambhir added 117 runs at almost run-a-ball in 23 overs. This provided a good momentum to India.

On day five, Sachin Tendulkar (103*) took charge and scored a brilliant unbeaten hundred. He and Yuvraj Singh (85*) added 163 runs in the fifth wicket as both remained not out and completed the chase for India. This remains India’s highest-ever fourth-innings chase.

India vs. England at Wankhede Stadium, 2012

When England came to India in 2012, the home team was favourite for the series win and, as expected, took an early 1-0 lead in the series. But the English spin duo of Monty Panesar and Graeme Swann showed enough promise for them and started to over-perform their Indian counterpart from the second Test.

India batted first and could post only 327 despite 135 from Cheteshwar Pujara and 68 from Ravichandran Ashwin as the rest of the batsmen were blown away by Panesar (5/129) and Swann (4/70), who shared 9 wickets between them.

The England innings was memorable for a Kevin Pietersen masterclass. The maverick batsman scored a brilliant 186 and added 206 runs in just 54 overs with captain Alastair Cook to put England in the driver’s seat. They were all out for 413 and took a handy lead.

In the second innings, India again collapsed to Panesar and Swann and was bowled out for just 142. Only Gautam Gambhir could score 65 as Panesar picked up 6 for 81 and Swann 4 for 43. Cook and Nick Compton easily completed the chase and won the Test by 10 wickets to level the series, which they later won 2-1.

India vs. England at MA Chidambaram Stadium, 2016

India already won the series 3-0 when the teams faced each other to play the series’s fifth Test match. India already proved the superiority in both departments, but England also showed enough spark to ensure it was not a one-sided series. Here also, batting first, they posted a respectable 477 in the first innings. Moeen Ali scored 146 and was supported by Joe Root, who scored 88.

The Englishmen hoped to pressure the Indians, but the Indian batsmen also found the pitch to be of their liking. Karun Nair, only playing his third Test, scored a triple century and remained unbeaten on 303. The opener KL Rahul was unfortunate as he became only the second Indian to be dismissed on 199. With the duo contributing more than 500 runs, India declared on 759/7. This is the highest ever total posted by them in their history.

Despite the 477 in the first innings, England was forced to play to save the Test match on day five. But Ravindra Jadeja’s masterful spin bowling resulted in him picking up 7 for 48 as England were all out for 207 runs, losing the Test match by 75 runs. This was also another record as their first innings 477 remains the highest team total to suffer an innings defeat.

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