India vs England: Plays of Day 3 at Edgbaston

The third day at Edgbaston was a statistical smorgasbord, the sort of occasion that appeals to the train-spotter that lurks within every cricket fan.

updated: August 13, 2011 11:04 IST
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Birmingham: Plays of the day from the third day of the third Test between England and India at Edgbaston.

Scoreline of the day
The third day at Edgbaston was a statistical smorgasbord, the sort of occasion that appeals to the train-spotter that lurks within every cricket fan. And as with many train-spotters, the desire to rip off the anorak, tie the hair back in a pony-tail and don an ill-fitting black T-shirt to rock out to some dark and foreboding heavy metal is rarely far from the surface. And so it was, when Alastair Cook obligingly carved Ishant Sharma through third man in the 181st over, he brought up the rocktacular scoreline of 666 ... for 6! The moment didn't last long, as Tim Bresnan exorcised the devil's number with a smack back down the ground. But like that elusive sighting of your favourite diesel engine on the Kings Cross-Leeds mainline, it was fun while it lasted.

Biff of the day

Bresnan's all-round credentials are soaring with every innings of this series. By the time of England's declaration, he had muscled along to 53 not out from 75 balls, a performance which carried his batting average after nine Tests to a world-class 45.42, to go along with a handy haul of 36 wickets at 24.13. But the highlight of his innings was unquestionably the mow over cow corner that brought up his fifty. It was a full and flat battering to further dent Ishant's figures, and it also carried England past 700. Not since 1938 had they racked up such riches in a single innings. Impressive doesn't do the effort justice.

Inevitability of the day

Twenty-one years ago at Lord's, the debutant John Morris sat in the dressing-room for hours and hours on end, waiting for Graham Gooch to finish his magnum opus and give him a chance to have his first hit in Test cricket. As things turned out, he had just enough time to strike his first boundary before England declared on 653 for 4. Ravi Bopara wasn't quite in the same boat, but in his first Test innings for two years, he was on a similar hiding-to-nothing when Eoin Morgan finally left the scene at 605 for 5. In his previous appearance at Edgbaston, in an ODI last year, he bashed 45 not out from 16 balls against Bangladesh, but this time he managed just 7 from 15, before Amit Mishra pinned him lbw.

Fail of the day
Edgbaston has spent £32million on revamping its venerable old ground, and the upshot is magnificent, with one of the most imposing stands in the world game, including a press box that dwarves that of any other venue in the country. But during the afternoon session, the new building suffered a teething problem that had unfortunate knock-on effects. A problem with the high-voltage feed caused a power cut in the stand, which in turn led to the floodlights being switched off "as a precaution". None of that would have mattered had the umpires not decided that play could not continue without them. And so, midway through the session, play ground to a thoroughly unnecessary halt. Mind you, with Cook at the crease, it didn't exactly make a dent in the day's glacial progress.

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