England batted like “idiots” as India took control of the second Test, says former batsman Geoffrey Boycott.
The tourists closed day two on 103-5 in reply to India’s 455 in Visakhapatnam.
Four wickets fell for 29 runs from 51-1 with the collapse sparked by the run out of teenage opener Haseeb Hameed.
“It’s been poor, poor batting. The low scuttler hasn’t got anybody out, I haven’t seen the jumping ball and yet England are in trouble at five down,” Boycott said on Test Match Special.
“It’s pressure, pressure, pressure. It’s a little bit about technique but it’s a mental game. It’s not a raging turner, let’s be honest. There’s been some sloppy, poor batting.”
Joe Root looked the most comfortable English batsman in reaching 53 but perished when he tried to hit off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin over the top and miscued a simple catch to deep mid-off.
Ben Duckett was bowled by Ashwin for five while Moeen Ali was trapped lbw by Jayant Yadav for one after a successful India review.
Ben Stokes and Jonny Bairstow halted the slide as both reached 12 not out by the close but with the pitch expected to deteriorate further, England are struggling to save the game and avoid going one-nil down in the five-match series.
Boycott’s verdict on the England wickets
Former England opener Boycott felt captain Alastair Cook, who was bowled by Mohammed Shami for two, fell victim to “a really good ball” but said the other four wickets were self-inflicted.
- 21 overs – Hameed run out 13 (Eng 51-2): “The kid was doing his bit and Root has to take the blame for the run out. Hameed gets halfway down the pitch and Root calls ‘no’. He stranded him and has to accept responsibility.”
- 27.3 overs – Duckett b Ashwin 5 (Eng 72-3): “You know which way he is spinning it, which is away from you, so you’ve got to get slightly outside the line of the ball. He’s playing leg-sideish – the ball turned, he’s playing down Bakerloo and it’s gone down Piccadilly.”
- 31.5 overs – Root c Umesh b Ashwin 53 (Eng 79-4): “Ashwin bowls him a ball that turned and bounces just a little bit, it hit his glove and didn’t go to hand. The next ball he runs down the pitch and tries to whack over the top. That was totally immature and unnecessary.”
- 34.2 overs – Moeen lbw Jayant 1 (Eng 80-5): “I take the point that it’s slightly unlucky to be [given out] that far down the pitch but you put your pad next to the line of the ball so your bat can come down and hit the ball – your pad is not there to play the ball.”
‘The game is gone’
Boycott believes “this game has gone” for England who trail India by 352 runs with three days still remaining.
“I was saying before England batted, you can’t afford to give India a 100-run lead. Batting last it gets worse and don’t pray for rain because this is not Manchester or Yorkshire,” he said.
“I can see India batting again if England hang on a bit. The pitch is going to wear and tear a bit more. There are three days left – this could be over in four days without a problem.”
England pace bowler Stuart Broad, who was limping on day one, has had a scan after experiencing discomfort in his right foot. The results are expected to be revealed on Saturday morning.
Jonathan Agnew, BBC cricket correspondent
“The groundsman expected the ball to start spinning shortly after lunch and he got it about right. Not sharply, but enough to unsettle jittery batsmen and expose poor technique.
“Some balls are keeping low, so batting is difficult but not impossible. It’s hard to see any obvious escape route for England.”
Article source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/cricket/38026323