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Home Trott fifty frustrates India
England had the better of a rain hit opening day at Lord’s thanks to an unbeaten Jonathan Trott half century, as India’s key seamer Zaheer Khan picked up an injury.
Trott rode his luck after being dropped at slip by Rahul Dravid off Harbhajan Singh from his first ball and reached the close on 58, while a scratchy looking Kevin Pietersen was 22 not out.
Zaheer had earlier dismissed both England openers either side of lunch, with Alastair Cook out for 12 - his first Test dismissal of less than 50 in 2011 - and skipper Andrew Strauss falling for 22.
Zaheer, so crucial to India’s hopes in this Test, had taken both England wickets to fall before the hosts closed on 127-2.
He left the field clutching his right hamstring halfway through his 14th over, 40 minutes before bad light and then heavy rain forced the players from the field.
It was later confirmed the 32-year-old had picked up a strain which was being 'investigated'.
Strauss’ day had started badly when he lost a delayed toss and was asked to bat first by his opposite number Mahendra Singh Dhoni in overcast and humid conditions.
India, who included Praveen Kumar and Suresh Raina, immediately put Strauss and Cook under pressure with a tight opening spell which nevertheless failed to produce a breakthrough.
Indeed, the closest they came to parting England’s openers was when Strauss set off at the non-strikers end for a single which Cook declined and was outside his ground when Ishant Sharma's throw missed the stumps.
Zaheer was warming up nicely though, and trapped Cook LBW after cleverly dragging him across his stumps. Hawkeye showed the ball hitting leg stump.
Number three Trott should have been snaffled off his first delivery but the usually reliable Dravid at slip missed a tricky low chance.
Trott and Strauss resumed after lunch, but were met by a magnificent bowling from Zaheer who sent down a four over spell without conceding a run.
He also collected his second wicket, coercing Strauss into a lazy hook which went straight down Sharma’s throat at fine-leg to leave England 62-2.
Trott broke Zaheer’s astonishing run off dot balls in the most fortunate manner possible, edging between ‘keeper Dhoni and first slip Dravid when one of them should have taken the catch.
Pietersen was unusually watchful at the start of his innings as he made a slow start, with Sharma in particular causing him a few problems from the Pavilion End.
Disaster struck shortly after for India though, when Zaheer sent down a delivery to Trott and immediately reached for his hamstring. He left the field almost immediately without returning.
The ball continued to swing for the two remaining seamers but with Harbhajan in operation from the Nursery End, things were fairly comfortable for England.
The fortunate Trott looked in the mood to take advantage of his good fortune, playing one beautiful drive off Harbhajan in particular.
Pietersen showed little of his best, and was lucky to survive a couple of edges off Kumar, but their partnership was unbroken on 65 when the inclement conditions took hold.