Pietersen leads England out of early trouble - Cricket - Sport - The Independent

Pietersen leads England out of early trouble

Kevin Pietersen hit a typically aggressive half-century to cheer England in the gloom of the second Test.

Pietersen's 64 helped the tourists recover from losing two early wickets at the Punjab Cricket Association headquarters, before he was caught and bowled by Munaf Patel for 64.

Pietersen's innings, the seventh time in 10 Tests he has passed 50, proved the cornerstone of England's 163 for 4 before bad light stopped play.

Ian Bell's innings of 38 reached its conclusion when he pushed at Anil Kumble and was defeated as the ball fizzed onto the off bail.

Warwickshire batsman Bell realigned the innings alongside Pietersen after the tourists lost both openers cheaply but it was the latter's positive approach which countered India's early ascendancy.

The pair negotiated five overs of a rain-reduced morning session, after Andrew Strauss and Alastair Cook fell in consecutive Irfan Pathan overs, and increased the scoring rate upon the resumption.

Pietersen began the session by attacking 17-year-old debutant Piyush Chawla to sweep a four and then repeating the stroke to clear the huge boundary at midwicket.

Ashes hero Pietersen then took his toll on India's other new boy Munaf Patel, twice finding the rope in one over.

Bell was more circumspect in his approach but pierced the off side with two drives through the covers off Pathan as England batted under floodlights.

After captain Andrew Flintoff won his second toss in a row, it was a stand the tourists required.

Strauss brought about his own demise as he flashed at a wide delivery and edged behind to wicketkeeper Mahendra Dhoni.

It was Pathan's ability to swing the new ball which undid Cook as one ducked back in to earn a straightforward leg-before decision.That left England 36 for two in the 13th over of a tricky morning which began with Pathan locating the outside edge of Strauss' bat with the opening delivery of the match only for the ball to drop short of second slip.

Pathan's spell of 8-2-23-2 certainly gave the Indians a fine start at the venue they secured victory in the 1-0 series triumph over England four years ago.

Overnight rain delayed the start by three quarters of an hour; more wet weather is forecast in the coming days.

Flintoff went into the contest after learning last night that wife Rachael had given birth to a baby boy.

Flintoff, 28, chose to remain here in India after replacing Michael Vaughan in charge rather than return home to witness the birth of Corey, his second child.

England made one change from the first Test with Liam Plunkett earning his second cap in place of Ian Blackwell.

India, meanwhile, brought in three new faces with Chawla and fast bowler Patel making bows and Yuvraj Singh returning after injury.

News
Paper trail: the wedding photograph found in the rubble after 9/11 – it took Elizabeth Keefe 13 years to find the people in it
newsWho are the people in this photo? It took Elizabeth Stringer Keefe 13 years to find out
Arts and Entertainment
Evil eye: Douglas Adams in 'mad genius' pose
booksNew biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Sport
FootballFull debuts don't come much more stylish than those on show here
News
i100
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
Kim Kardashian drawn backlash over her sexy swimsuit selfie, called 'disgusting' and 'nasty'
fashionCritics say magazine only pays attention to fashion trends among rich, white women
Arts and Entertainment
TVShows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Arts and Entertainment
Hit the roof: hot-tub cinema east London
architectureFrom pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
Travel
travel
News
The ecological reconstruction of Ikrandraco avatar is shown in this illustration courtesy of Chuang Zhao. Scientists on September 11, 2014 announced the discovery of fossils in China of a type of flying reptile called a pterosaur that lived 120 millions years ago and so closely resembled those creatures from the 2009 film, Avatar that they named it after them.
SCIENCE
Life and Style
tech
Arts and Entertainment
Matisse: The Cut-Outs exhibition attracted 562,000 visitors to the Tate Modern from April to September
art
Life and Style
Models walk the runway at the Tom Ford show during London Fashion Week Spring Summer 2015
fashionLondon Fashion Week 2014
News
Kenny G
news
News
peopleThe black actress has claimed police mistook her for a prostitute when she kissed her white husband
Life and Style
techIndian model comes with cricket scores baked in
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam
'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

Exclusive extract from Janis Winehouse's poignant new memoir
Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

The Imitation Game, film review
England and Roy Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption in Basel

England and Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption

Welbeck double puts England on the road to Euro 2016
Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Pictures removed from public view as courts decide ownership
‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

Donatella Versace at New York Fashion Week