Tuesday, July 17th, 2018

Woakes Comeback As Fisher Strikes At Blackfinch New Road

Woakes Comeback As Fisher Strikes At Blackfinch New Road

chris woakes made an encouraging return to first class action but it was matthew fisher who impressed most with the ball for england lions against india a on the second day of the four-day encounter at New Road.

warwickshire all-rounder woakes suffered quad and knee injuries during the second test against pakistan at headingley in early june.

he made a second eleven comeback for his county last week but this was woakes first major opportunity to prove his fitness ahead of the forthcoming test series with india.

the 29-year-old was the fifth bowled used and sent down seven successive overs at a lively pace for a cost of 16 runs and will no apparent ill effects.

however, it was fisher who was rewarded for a testing six over spell which brought him the wickets of mayank agarwal and indian a skipper karun nair on a day of contrasting fortunes to yesterday

the lions had resumed on 310-2 but, under cloudier skies, batting was a different and more challenging proposition today and their last eight wickets went down for 113 in 40.5 overs.

then only prithvi shaw went past the half century mark for the tourists who closed on 144-4.

alastair cook had advanced from his overnight 154 to 180 when he was bowled via the inside edge by ankit rajpoot.

the england opener was clearly furious with having had his fine knock brought to an end but had no need to chastise himself after hitting 26 boundaries in his 268 ball knock and looking in fine fettle for the test battles ahead with india.

the bulk of the damage was done by paceman mohammed siraj who had gone wicketless in 14 overs yesterday but had figures today of 15-5-28-4.

dawid malan, released from the odi squad to get in some red ball practice in the middle before the first test, achieved that objective but after resuming on 59 added only 15 more before he played onto siraj.

it opened the door for siraj as sam curran (12) drove loosely and was caught behind, woakes (15) shouldered arms and lost his middle stump and dominic bess (13) went for a back foot drive and nicked to first slip.

spinner shahbaz nadeem cleaned up the other three wickets, trapping keeper ollie pope (8) leg before accounting for tail-ended matthew fisher (6) and jamie porter (0).

it meant the lions had lost eight wickets for 113 runs in 40.5 overs today – and the same procession of batsmen continued when india a began their reply.

there was the encouraging sight of spinner jack leach beating the outside edge of indian opener prithvi shaw three times in his solitary over before tea.

leach – like woakes – is looking to re-establish his test credentials after lay-offs with a broken thumb and then concussion

jamie porter settled into a good rhythm after the interval and was rewarded when he had murali vijay (8) – one of four test players in the india a side – leg before.

fisher then entered the fray and showed good pace and excellent control at the diglis end of the ground.

agarwal drove at the yorkshire paceman before he had scored and keeper pope snaffled the chance away to his right.

fisher enjoyed another breakthrough in his next over as nair (4) turned the ball loosely into the hands of curran at mid wicket.

shaw looked compact and organised but after making 62 from 82 balls before malan at second slip held onto an edge against curran bowling around the wicket.