Day 4 : England vs India 1st Test , London – Live Score,Streaming
Tea England 474 for 8 dec and 174 for 6 (Prior 55*, Broad 36*, Ishant 4-41) lead India 286 by 362 runs
Six early wickets, mainly through a resurgent Ishant Sharma, delayed England's declaration on the fourth day at Lord's. England found themselves 295 ahead with just four wickets remaining at one point, which meant an improbable Indian win couldn't be ruled out. Matt Prior and Stuart Broad, however, all but batted India out through a brisk, unbeaten 67-run partnership before tea. Prior - as he has often done - brought some positive intent to the innings, and scored his second fifty of the match. In the process he also hit India's opener Gautam Gambhir, who was fielding at short leg, on the elbow, forcing him to join Zaheer Khan and Sachin Tendulkar in the dressing room.
The first two sessions of the fourth day were always going to be about England striving for a big enough lead to declare somewhere around the tea break, and India trying to delay that eventuality. Ishant played a major role in slowing the runs down, through wickets. Slightly surprisingly, though, England were not urgent at all in the first hour, when the ball hardly swung, even for Praveen Kumar.
In the second hour, India's rhythm bowlers - Ishant and Harbhajan Singh - found their form, converting 54 for 1 to 55 for 4, effectively 243 for 4. Ishant's spell leading up to lunch read 5-3-4-3. In what could be a significant moment for the rest of the series, even though the best India can take from this match is a draw, Ishant let Kevin Pietersen know he will not be bullied. In the first innings, Pietersen had put Ishant completely off his line and length by walking across his stumps and towards the bowler. On the fourth day, Ishant welcomed him with a bouncer, got extra bounce and the batsman's glove. To cap it off he soon bowled two beauties to send back Ian Bell and Jonathan Trott.
The day had begun with Alastair Cook scratching around, and Andrew Strauss feeling his way back into form. Praveen dismissed Cook for a rare single-figure score, and Strauss fell playing a second ordinary sweep to Harbhajan. That early wicket meant Harbhajan was more threatening than in the first innings.
Strauss' departure brought Pietersen in, and Ishant had a message to deliver. Then followed the two quintessential Ishant wickets. Bell got one that left him against the angle, taking the edge. Two wickets in one over. Two overs later, Ishant got one to move in sharply to Trott, against the slope, and hit the top of off. That ball was good enough to get greats out.
Sixty-seven runs came in 26 overs before lunch, for the loss of five wickets. Post lunch, India weren't as aggressive. They didn't begin with Ishant, who had bowled 11 overs in the first session. When they reintroduced Ishant, he got Eoin Morgan with a short ball that did the batsman for pace.
Prior, though, didn't inhabit the shell his team-mates did. Faced with his aggression, India backed off a bit. The running between the wickets was aggressive too. The fielders wilted. MS Dhoni, having an ordinary Test as a wicketkeeper, dropped a tough chance from Broad, and then failed to go for another to his left after he had placed the first slip wide. The lead was 326 and 331 at those points.
Prior, though, didn't offer any chances. He hit only two boundaries, but exploited the in-and-out field well. Every time he got room he drove emphatically, anything straight was punished into the on side, and potentially the biggest blow was a meaty sweep into Gambhir's elbow at short leg, minutes before tea. Thanks to his 55 off 82, England led by 362 at the break, and India were left to wait for a declaration.