Michael Atherton floored by Ben Stokes’ captaincy in the 2nd Test vs India at Vizag

England needs to get to 399 in the last innings to win the second Test against India which is being played at Dr Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy ACA-VDCA Cricket Stadium in Vishakhapatnam (Vizag). India was restricted to 255 in the second innings as Ben Stokes was brilliant with his captaincy on Day 3 as he could restrict India before they got to the lead of 400. Former England cricketer Michael Atherton lauded Ben Stokes for his captaincy and he also appreciated the young spinners, wicketkeeper Ben Foakes, and James Anderson for their performance.

Michael Atherton heaped praises on Ben Stokes especially the catch he took of Shreyas Iyer set an example on the field. According to Atherton, Ben Foakes was also brilliant behind the wickets for taking two low catches and he lauded the young spinners for sharing eight wickets among them and James Anderson for his brilliant delivery early in the day dismissing Rohit Sharma. Even after getting a huge target of 399, Atherton feels that England had a good day on the ground.

“I wouldn’t discount this England team on the Ben Stokes and Brendon McCullum from doing anything and they had an absolutely brilliant day, they were well behind in the game at the start of the play 171 runs in a rare, sort of come out and control the game as they did. I thought Stokes’ captaincy was absolutely superb, he took a brilliant catch, setting the example in the field.” Michael Atherton said on SkySports.

“Ben Foakes was magnificent behind the stumps, two great low catches were taken by him and young spinners responded with eight wickets between them then the 41-year-old Jimmy Anderson at the start of the day produced one of his best deliveries to knock Rohit Sharma’s off stump out of the ground. They had a better day than they could’ve hoped for or imagined and have given themselves a squeak,” he added.

Ben Stokes Has Not Lost A Test Series As A Captain

Ben Stokes replaced Joe Root as the Test captain of England in 2022 and since then, he has been brilliant as a Test captain. He has not lost a Test series as captain of the England team and has been a brilliant leader on the field. However, his record may be shattered by the Indian team who is also yet to lose a Test series under Rohit Sharma and are invincible on their home ground.

Team India has won 16 consecutive Test series at home and has not lost a Test series at home since 2012 when they were last defeated by England by 2-1. The coach and captain duo of Brendon McCullum and Ben Stokes has done a terrific job for England, introducing Bazball; which is an aggressive approach in Test cricket where the batters are expected to take on the bowlers right from the start in a Test match.

Ben Stokes and company are already leading in the ongoing five-match series against India as they won the series opener in Hyderabad by 28 runs. India is cruising towards victory in the second Test to level the series 1-1 and the momentum might help the Indian team to register their 17th consecutive win in a Test series at home.

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