Birmingham: England will be drawing confidence from India’s strong comeback from a similar situation, according to veteran seamer James Anderson, who insists the hosts will continue to play aggressively in the rescheduled fifth Test here.
England are in all sorts of trouble with half of the team back in the pavilion at the end of the second day.The hosts ended at 84 for five, still trailing India by 332 runs.
The situation is akin to where then India team found itself on the opening day at 98 for five.
“We’re in a similar situation to them, and that gives us confidence we can do something similar,” Anderson said after the second day’s play.
Rishabh Pant (146) and Ravindra Jadeja (104) had , however, changed the complexion of the game as the duo shared 222 runs for the sixth wicket to take India to 416 in their first innings.
“We’ve all got a job to do down the order, we’ve got to put on some big partnerships and put some pressure back on India.
“I’ve got a fair feeling our best line of defence will be attack,” Anderson said.
In the second Test against New Zealand last month, skipper Ben Stokes and Jonny Bairstow had bailed England out of a similar situation.
“The way we’ve got ourselves out of sticky situations in the last few weeks has been by trying to put pressure back on the opposition, and I don’t see this being any different,” Anderson said.
“We want to score, we want to move the game forward, and that’s what we’ll try and do.”
With the ball, Anderson picked a fifer, ending the first innings with figures of 5 for 60 but conceded that Pant’s brilliant innings swayed the momentum in India’s favour.
“I actually thought we bowled well yesterday morning and into the afternoon and then Pant played an amazing innings.
“He’s extremely talented, he’s got all the shots and he’s not afraid to play them, so he’s a difficult guy to bowl at.”
To add to the assault, skipper Jaspirt Bumrah bludgeoned a hapless Stuart Broad for 29 runs to create a world record for maximum runs off a single over in Test cricket.
Broad ended up giving away 35 runs in that over after adding the extras.
“On another day one of those top edges goes straight to hand, and if that happens no one talks about the over. The way it went was pretty unlucky I thought,” Anderson said.
“Sometimes it can be easier to bowl to top-order batsmen, I remember a few balls I bowled to Mohammed Siraj today where he tried to hit two out of the ground and then played a perfect back-foot defensive to the next one,” Anderson said.
“So, it can be tricky to get into a rhythm against them. You’ve just got to back yourself that your best ball will get them out eventually.”