2125 IST: And now it’s official... play called off without a ball being bowled.

2117 IST: Looks like matter of time before play is called off...

2055 IST: This is an interesting stat... (and we are getting close to the day being washed out, so apt as well)

2033 IST: Aaaanndddd again.

2030 IST: Technically, we have lost two full sessions now and not clear-cut update yet on when play could resume.

2012 IST: More good news trickling in...

2000 IST:

Update from BCCI (and it’s good-ish news!): “It’s getting a lot brighter at the moment and the ground staff have gone out to see what can be done”

1942 IST: Still the same. Rain isn’t go away today.

Early lunch has been taken

Since there has been no play at all, early lunch has been taken in a bid to save time later.

The Bell Ringer

If and when, the rain

Asian teams like Lord’s

The last five Test match played by Asian teams have seen them make a very positive impact. The ball tends to turn more here and Asian teams have made the most of that.

Victory at Lord’s in 2014

Remember that win? Remember Ishan’t short ball attack? If you don’t, read how Dhoni got Ishant use the short ball to his and India’s advantage:

“To start off with, it was very difficult to convince him [Ishant],” Dhoni had then said. “When he first came on to bowl, I asked him to bowl short, and he turned the other way. Then I set the field for him so that he couldn’t even think of bowling up. So the strategy was to give him a field so he is forced to bowl the length that I wanted him to bowl.

“It worked, and once he got Moeen’s wicket [with the last ball before lunch] he was eager enough to try that attack for a consistent period of time. He works really hard on his fitness and on his bowling and doesn’t shy away from bowling long spells. Whenever you ask him to bowl, whatever situation, he gives his 100%. There is no reason why he shouldn’t test this line of attack. He will have to bowl a high number of overs outside India so he will have to bowl short because he has the height so he can exploit the bounce and put pressure on batsmen. He can add this to his armoury because it is definitely difficult to convince him.”

“At times it’s not the bouncer that gets you the wicket but what happens after the bouncer that can actually get you wickets. At times it becomes difficult to make them understand even if you are saying it in simple words. Cricket is a complex sport. Ishant never wanted to bowl round the wicket. He was like, ‘No it’s going that way. So I want to bowl over.’ So what happens is when you go through that phase it opens that sector for you. Your armoury increases. We don’t want to force ourselves on the bowlers, but now in the past four or five games I definitely think their view to bouncers and short stuff has opened up. Now they are using it quite consistently.”

Does India really use Pandya as an allrounder?

Rather than using Hardik Pandya as a stop-gap all-rounder, Virat Kohli should opt for a second spinner at Lord’s, writes Kushal Phatarpekar.

“Unlike Hardik, Stokes as an all-rounder is more of a bowling option. That he is part of the team’s pace battery makes him more valuable than Hardik, who by coming down the order is hardly seen as a batsman of choice. As a bowler too he is used as a stop-gap option by Kohli.

To put it in perspective, Stokes bowled as many as 33.2 overs compared to Hardik’s tally of 10 in the match.”

Read the full piece HERE

Pujara or Dhawan? Kuldeep or a paceman?

What is India’s playing XI going to be? That is always the big question with Kohli as skipper. Here’s what are reader’s thought should be India’s playing XI today. Agree?

How does India fare at Lord’s?

India’s batting history at the ground isn’t very enviable. Eleven of the 105 centuries by visiting batsmen have been scored by Indians, three of which were made by Dilip Vengsarkar over three consecutive tours making him the only overseas batsmen in history to hit three centuries at Lord’s.

India’s bowlers by comparison have done well since 2000.

Here’s a quick look at the numbers.

Where do India’s cricketers come from?

Since 1932, Mumbai has produced generations of Indian Test cricketers. But now its presence in the national side is nearly gone.

Read the full piece HERE

Delayed start?

It’s drizzling at Lord’s and the covers are on. Will this impact team selection too?

The confidence game

Will Pujara make it back to the playing XI? He may but perhaps it is time Kohli starts showing confidence in his players and his choices. Chopping and changing is not always the way to go.

“He needs to remember that MS Dhoni had gone against popular opinion to retain him in the side and give him a go in the Perth Test in 2012 despite poor performances in Melbourne (11 and 0) and Sydney (23 and 9). Kohli responded to that confidence with scores of 44 and 74 in Perth and then 116 and 22 at Adelaide. India lost the series… no, they were crushed but they found Kohli.”

Read the full piece HERE

India’s over-dependence on Kohli

Does India depend on Kohli even more than it did on Tendulkar? Vinayakk Mohanarangan and Anand Katam do a data check to find out:

Read the full piece HERE

England’s batting not the greatest

In 17 Tests since Root became captain in July 2017, England have managed just nine hundreds between them and, even more concerningly for their fans, have been dismissed for under 300 in their first innings seven times and for under 250 in the second innings nine times.


England will be without Ben Stokes while India could make changes too for the second Test at Lord’s on Thursday.

Stokes played a starring role in England’s 31-run win in the first Test of a five-match series at Edgbaston last week, including taking the wicket of India captain Virat Kohli, who had been anchoring the tourists’ run-chase.

But Stokes was omitted by England because he is in court this week on a criminal charge of affray.

Fellow pace-bowling all-rounder Chris Woakes has been called up in his place to the England squad, with uncapped Surrey batsman Ollie Pope selected instead of Dawid Malan, dropped after a run of low scores.

But in a dry English summer that has seen pitches more receptive to slow bowling than usual, England could recall off-spinner Moeen Ali to partner leg-break bowler Adil Rashid even though England captain Joe Root bowls occasional off-breaks.

India too could make a top-order change with the experienced Cheteshwar Pujara waiting in the wings if struggling opener Shikhar Dhawan is omitted.

They also have the option of playing a second-spinner, be it orthodox left-armer Ravindra Jadeja or left-arm wrist-spinner Kuldeep Yadav, with all-rounder Hardik Pandya the man most likely to miss out if either slow bowler is selected.

“It’s a good choice, a tough one too,” Bharat Arun, India’s bowling coach, told reporters at Lord’s on Tuesday.

“We really need to look at any change in strategy, depending on the wicket.”