The third Test between India and England has kicked off at Headingley on Wednesday. After winning the toss, Virat Kohli opted to bat first despite slightly cloudy conditions in Leeds. It was a brave call by the Indian captain as Joe Root also admitted that he was happy to bowl first. The England skipper probably had a fair idea about the conditions at the venue and he was proven right in the first half of play on Day 1.
Ahead of this match, all eyes were on James Anderson who had quite a dramatic outing in the previous contest, mostly due to his banter with Jasprit Bumrah and Virat Kohli. With no Stuart Broad and Mark Wood, there was always going to be added responsibility on the shoulders of Anderson on Wednesday and the English veteran certainly lived up to the expectations.
Anderson dismisses in-form KL Rahul in first over
The opening partnership between KL Rahul and Rohit Sharma has been haunting England throughout the series so far. The duo has been playing some brilliant cricket at top of the order and with the home side looking to pave their way back into the series, they were desperately in search of an early breakthrough.
After bowling a fairly decent opening over, Anderson pitched the fifth delivery way outside the off stump. KL Rahul was provoked to play a drive which ultimately led to his downfall as he got an edge as the ball went straight into the safe hands of Jos Buttler. For a change, India had lost an early wicket for the first time in the series and went on the backfoot early on Day 1.
Anderson-Buttler duo combines once again to take India's second wicket
As Cheteshwar Pujara walked out to bat, England sensed an opportunity to get rid of India's No. 3 who has not been in decent form off late. Joe Root put on an attacking field and England were on top. One could feel that the wicket was coming with Pujara not looking too comfortable at the crease.
This is when Anderson bowled a peach of a delivery on the first ball of 5th over. The Indian batsman was once again bamboozled by Jimmy's trademark out-swinger as Jos Buttler moved slightly towards his right to take an easy catch. India's score read 4/2 inside the first half hour with the home side on top.
Anderson gets the better of Virat Kohli once again
James Anderson vs Virat Kohli – This was one of the battles to watch out for ahead of the series. The face-off had spiced up after their heated argument in previous match and the fans were waiting for the battle to resume once again in third Test.
On Wednesday, the Indian skipper looked quite comfortable in the early part of innings as he also played a delightful shot straight down the wicket off Anderson. However, the English pacer had the last laugh as Kohli edged one of the deliveries and Buttler once again completed the duties behind the wickets.
Anderson was certainly pumped up after giving England the third breakthrough in first session as his ecstatic celebration reflected how much Kohli’s wicket meant to him. Kohli was dismissed on 7 as India found themselves reeling at 21/3. CLICK HERE for LIVE SCORECARD