After harping over the Ahmedabad pitch and how it is not suitable for cricket over the last few days, former English skipper Michael Vaughan on Thursday for the first time acknowledged the fact that there was no issue with the pitch and it was the poor batting of the visiting team.
On Thursday, the visiting team was reeling at 74/3 at the end of the first session of play on the opening Test of the final Test. Team India bowlers started well with Axar Patel continuing his good run as he dismissed both the English openers before Mohammed Siraj, who came in place of Jasprit Bumrah, dismissed England skipper Joe Root.
At one point, England was tottering at 30/3 before batsman Jonny Bairstow and all-rounder Ben Stokes built a partnership and took their team into the lunch break.’ Tweeting about England’s batting performance, Michael Vaughan wrote: “England’s batting so far worse than any of the last few Tests … This Pitch is a perfect surface to get a big first innings score … No spin … Ball coming onto the Bat … Very poor Batting so far …”
England’s batting so far worse than any of the last few Tests … This Pitch is a perfect surface to get a big first innings score … No spin … Ball coming onto the Bat … Very poor Batting so far … #INDvENG
— Michael Vaughan (@MichaelVaughan) March 4, 2021
Earlier, England had won the toss and opted to bat, attempting to follow the model in their victory in the first Test in Chennai. But Dom Sibley was sent back to the pavilion by Axar Patel in the bowler’s very first over when once again, bringing back the ghosts of the Pink-ball Test, he played for the spin while the bowl went on straight to break the stumps.
Zak Crawley was dismissed soon after attempting to smash a six off Axar and going for a lofted shot but mistimed it to be caught at long-on by Siraj.
Vaughan, along with several other former England greats, had previously been critical about the pitch that was on offer for the third Test between India and England at the newly-renovated Narendra Modi stadium. The match ended inside 2 days with India winning by 10 wickets to take a 2-1 lead in the four-match series.