After a frustrating day one of the second Test between India and England, the weather gods finally smiled on Friday as the skies broke out that eventually led to some play. England captain Joe Root won the crucial toss and invited Virat Kohli’s men to bat first in overcast conditions at the iconic Lord’s Cricket Ground. Both teams made a couple of changes in their playing XI for the second Test – England included all-rounder Chris Woakes and Ollie Pope, whereas, Kohli opted to use the services of Cheteshwar Pujara and Kuldeep Yadav.Also Read - India to Play Cancelled 5th Test vs England in July 2022, All You Need to Know About Revised Dates, Venues of Test, T20I and ODI Series
Among all, the 20-year old Ollie Pope caught everyone’s attention, who was awarded his Test debut cap from former England wicketkeeper Alec Stewart in a team huddle before the start of the contest. The Surrey County Cricket Club director Stewart also showered a few words of praise for the youngster and called him a future star of English cricket. Also Read - T20 World Cup 2021: Shane Warne Picks His Favourites to Win Title, Bewares Teams For Underestimating Australia
“Popey, Since 1877, 686 players have represented England. You are about to become, 687. These caps are not given away, these caps are purely earned. when I gave you Surrey Under-9 player of the year, two years ago (jokingly said),” Stewart said. Also Read - T20 World Cup 2021: Eoin Morgan Willing to Drop Himself From England T20 Squad, Says Will Not Come in Way of Team Winning Title
“We knew you were going to be good. Did we expect you were going to be playing for England at the age of 20? We weren’t sure… but in the last 18 months we’ve seen a very special talent,” the 55-year-old added.
Stewart also made Pope realise about the burden of responsibilities while wearing that coveted English Test cap. He asked the youngster to make a mark for himself and pick up the nitty-gritty’s from the other stalwarts present around him.
“You are now going to join an elite group of players. You’ve earned the right, now when you go out there today make sure you show everyone just how good you are.”
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“Your captain spoke brilliantly of you two days ago, we saw you get a big 150 for Surrey against Yorkshire and now I’m going to watch you go out and do well for England.”
“You got some great players around you. You got the captain, Alastair Cook, James Anderson, Stuart Broad, you name it.”
“Tuck into their knowledge, but most importantly do it your way. Well done mate, really proud of you, good luck,” Stewart signed off.
Later, Rain interrupted play on the second day of the second cricket Test between India and England at Lord’s on Friday. After rain washed out the opening day without a ball being bowled, England skipper Joe Root won the toss and elected to field against India.
England then reduced India to 11 for two in 6.3 overs before heavens opened up to halt the proceedings.
At the break, Cheteshwar Pujara, who replaced Shikhar Dhawan in the playing XI, was at one and giving him company was skipper Virat Kohli (1).
England won the first Test by 31 runs.