England left-arm spinner Tom Hartley tore through the Indians’ batting order during the first Test of the five-match series. The debutant took a total of nine wickets in the entire match and played an important role in England’s 28-run victory over India. Hartley made a lot of runs during the first innings, but as soon as the wicket became slow on the fourth day, he took 7 wickets.
India They were given a target of 231 runs to chase in the fourth innings, however, it seems Virat Kohli’s absence has hurt Indian cricket, with their batting line-up left exposed by England’s spinners. Former England Captain Nasser Hussain, speaking to Sky Sports, believed that England registered a notable victory against India. Hussain also praised Ollie Pope’s knock and felt it was a remarkable innings.
Later in the conversation, Nasser Hussain also praised England captain Ben Stokes and player Tom Hartley. According to Hussain, Stokes used Hartley quite well and the credit also goes to Hartley for the way he was able to calm the nerves and deliver such an excellent performance.
Nasser Hussain praises Ben Stokes and Tom Hartley
“Stokes always has his man’s back, but the credit must go to the man himself” 🏏
Nasser Hussain reacts to Tom Hartley’s stellar seven wickets on Test debut as England beat India 👏 pic.twitter.com/6FVeqv14nu
– Sky Sports Cricket (@SkyCricket) January 28, 2024
Nasser Hussain said: “Amazing Test Match, in fact a couple of amazing Test Matches during the night. The West Indies won by eight runs at the Gabba and England achieved a remarkable victory. The 190-run first innings deficit against India with one of the opposition’s best spinners.
“Pope plays one of the most remarkable innings we have ever witnessed. Tom Hartley, who struggled in the first innings and was supported to the hill by captain Stokes, achieved today’s seven-fer. A surprising turnaround by England, they are 1-0 down in Hyderabad and Stokes and McCullum and their regime continue to excite.”
“Absolutely, I think you forget about the nerves, the pressure, about taking a step forward to understand a debut in a Test match. When you’re off the field, forget how much pressure you’re under and nerves get the better of you. In the first innings he didn’t bowl particularly well, the variation in length from him disappointed him.
“I think the way Stokes kept him while others kept him away. Stokes always backs his man, but the credit goes to Hartley. In the test match, when everyone talks about you and says are you a test match player, the second time he bowled like you and the way he did, it is not just about the ability to play international cricket but also of the mental strength that Hartley has shown.”
The Indian cricket team fell to fifth place in the 2023-25 World Test Championship standings and will now try to regain the lost momentum in the second Test match. The Indian team was never in a position to lose the match in the first three days and maintained control of the match. However, Ollie Pope’s innings proved to be a turning point in the match and also took the game away from the hosts.