A superb team bowling performance, led by Stuart Broad, put England in total control of the test.
Whilst Rahul Dravid played a truly great innings to hold the Indian batting together, the day belonged to Stuart Broad. Under considerable pressure to justify his place in the side, Broad bowled one of the best spells of his career to tear through India’s top order. Figures of 4/37 could, and should, have been even better had England’s slip cordon not momentarily lost their minds. A place on the honours board would have been much deserved.
The afternoon session as a whole was an incredibly intense period of cricket, but the defining moment of the day was the return of England’s much maligned third seamer to the attack after lunch. Dravid and Tendulkar set off like an express train after the interval, but within a few minutes of his re-introduction Broad removed the Little Master before having both Dravid and new man VVS Laxman dropped at slip. The momentum of the game swung on that over, and India never really recovered.
England will bat much of the day before having a go at India late in the afternoon. Much depends on how aggressive the Two Andy’s will be. They have been criticised in the past for taking too long over declarations (we’re putting together a sweepstake on when a certain I T Botham will first demand Strauss calls them in, entries at the bottom please), but with the opposition batting line up as strong as it is one would expect them to err on the side of caution.