England all-rounder Chris Woakes completely changed the game with the bat as his unbeaten 120 helped England reach 357/6 and take their lead to 250 against India on Day 2 of the second Test at Lord's.
Woakes walked into bat with the hosts struggling at 131/5 and India slowly crawling their way back into the game. But Woakes ensured that India's fight back didn't derail the hosts as he scored quick runs to hurt the visitors.
What made the knock more special was the fact that Woakes was returning to the team after a six-week layout due to a knee injury.
“It’s a sweet day, really. I was over the moon to get the call to be back in the squad and I could never have dreamed of getting a hundred in my comeback Test,” said Woakes after the end of play.
"To get to a hundred was an incredible feeling and I was getting a bit nervous through the 90s, to be honest. To receive a standing ovation at Lord's is a bit of a boyhood dream."
"It would’ve been nice to have had a little bit more red-ball cricket under my belt (before the Test) but I definitely felt I was ready from the mental side of things if called upon. Obviously coming in instead of Ben Stokes, it’s quite big boots to fill, but I try not to play like him, I try to play like myself and hopefully I’ve done a job so far.”
Woakes averages an incredible 121 with the bat and 9.93 with the ball at Lord's but the all-rounder didn't care too much about the special numbers.
“I don’t know to be honest, obviously, I’ve had a couple of good games here in the past. I don’t know whether it’s the surface or the conditions or I’ve just hit form at the right time. The slope gives you a little bit more to work with as a bowler and I feel like I’ve bowled well from the Nursery End here.”