England close to victory as India crumble to Bresnan
Tea: Second Test, day four, Trent Bridge
Match score: India 68-6 (Tendulkar 35*, Harbhajan Singh 10*) and 288 (Dravid 117, Yuvraj Singh 62, Laxman 54, Broad 6 for 46); England 221 (Broad 64) and 544 (Bell 159, Bresnan 90, Prior 73, Morgan 70, Pietersen 63) Full scorecard
Session score: India 60-5 England win session
August 1 is Yorkshire Day and, bang on cue, Tim Bresnan today produced his finest Test bowling performance as India crumbled towards defeat at Trent Bridge.
At tea on day four, India were 68 for six and England were closing in on a crushing victory and an unassailable 2-0 lead in the four-match series. Yorkshire all-rounder Bresnan had taken 4 for 17 from eight overs of unrelenting hostility.
Celebrations of Yorkshire Day were going on right across the Broad Acres – in York, for instance, there was brass bands, morris dancers and whippets from the Scruples rescue centre – but they could not have been a patch on Bresnan’s heroics in Nottingham.
Billed as “a celebration of all things Yorkshire”, Yorkshire Day could not have a better public face than Bresnan. He is the personification of the word ‘burly’ and could not conceivably be anything other than a Yorkshireman.
Bresnan was on a hat-trick after seeing Indian captain MS Dhoni pad up to an off-cutter to fall for a first ball duck after Yuvraj Singh had gloved a wicked short ball to Alastair Cook. Harbhajan Singh averted the hat-trick in style by driving a full toss for four, but there was precious little for Indian supporters to cheer about in a calamitous afternoon’s cricket which cost them five wickets for 60 runs.
Stuart Broad had made the first incision into India’s second innings by having Rahul Dravid caught at the wicket just before lunch, and Jimmy Anderson then followed up by clean bowling VVS Laxman with a beauty that plucked out his off stump in the second over after lunch.
Bresnan’s first victim was Abhinav Mukund, caught at first slip from a snorting short ball that he did well to glove from in front of his face, and in his next over Suresh Raina was well held by substitute fielder Scott Elstone, the young Nottinghamshire batsman, at long leg when the left-hander top-edged a hook.
Sachin Tendulkar watched impassively from the non-striker’s end as India, technically chasing 478 for victory of their own, wilted in the face of skilled and aggressive bowling. At times, England captain Andrew Strauss set fields of several slips and several gulleys as his side closed in for the kill.
Tendulkar, 35 not out at tea, played some memorable strokes amid the carnage, but ever since Broad’s second day hat-trick this match has been going England’s way – at a rush. A four-day finish is now likely – and it won’t just be Yorkshire celebrating tonight.