Indian pacer Ishant Sharma has turned a steep corner with a stellar bowling performance that orchestrated India's historic Test win at Lord's. Ishant's splendid figures of 7/74, his career-best in Tests, enabled India to end a 28-year wait to record a Test win at the 'Mecca of Cricket'. (Match report | Scorecard | Highlights)
The tall pacer came into the series under severe pressure to perform and his poor bowling figures in the tour games did not help his cause. But, like he said in the post-match presenation, he never stopped backing himself and that cricket was a great leveller.
When most people had their doubts, Indian pacer Zaheer Khan showed his support, saying Ishant should be the leader of India's bowling attack. Skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni too seemed to have believed that Ishant could pull a rabbit out of his hat. Ishant pulled out seven! ('India can bounce out teams too')
In the course of scripting India's victory, he became the first Indian speedster to bag seven wickets in the fourth innings of a Test. This was also his sixth five-wicket haul in Tests, but his first in a winning cause.Â Â
Despite what his naysayers claim, Ishant has had a good year with the ball, becoming the first Indian bowler to complete 25 wickets in four Tests at an average of 26.58.
Other stats from the Lord's Test
- Since winning by 74 runs against Australia at Chester-le-Street in August 2013, England are without a win in ten Tests, losing seven and drawing the remaining three.
- Under Dhoni's captaincy, India have won 27, lost 14 and drawn 14 out of 55 played - winning % 49.09.
- Joe Root (66 off 146 balls) has recorded his fifth fifty in Tests - his second against India.
- Root enjoys an excellent record in Tests in England - his tally being 1,074 at an average of 59.66 in 21 innings, including four hundreds and three fifties.
- Root is averaging 100-plus in Tests against India - 326 runs in five innings (ave.108.66), including a hundred and two fifties.
- Root and Ali were involved in a stand of 101 - England's sixth century stand vs India for the fifth wicket in England - the highest being 202 between Tony Greig and Mike Denness at Lord's in 1974.
- Ben Stokes has achieved a hat-tricks of ducks in Tests - all three against India.Â Since posting 70 vs Australia in the Perth ODI on January 24, 2014, Ben Stokes has recorded 0, 5, 5, 4, 0, 4, 0, 0, 0 & 0 in international cricket.
- Mahendra Singh Dhoni, with 272 dismissals (235 catchesÂ 37 stumpings) has moved into the fifth place in the all-time list of leading wicketkeepers, bettering the 270 by Jeff Dujon (West Indies).
(Stats courtesy: Rajesh Kumar)