Jonathan Trott holds up India in first Test at Lord's
First Test, Lord's (day one):
England 127-2 v India
England rode their luck to reach 127-2 after being put into bat in testing conditions on a rain-hit opening day of the first Test against India at Lord's.
Jonathan Trott was dropped by Rahul Dravid on eight and edged between wicketkeeper and first slip on his way to 58 not out before the weather ended proceedings.
To make matters worse for India, left-arm seamer Zaheer Khan - who had earlier removed England openers Alastair Cook and Andrew Strauss - was forced off the field with what appeared to be a hamstring problem.
Any serious injury to the tourists' number one seam bowler would dramatically increase England's chances of winning the four-match series. If Strauss's men can triumph by two clear Tests they will usurp India as the number one ranked Test side.
India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni had no hesitation in choosing to bowl first as the 2,000th Test match in history got underway with grey clouds looming over the home of cricket.
“I don't think it was a bowl first pitch. You have to be sure you can bowl a team out in a day and India didn't look like doing that. England's batsmen got a bit lucky with some of their shots, but they are sitting pretty only two wickets down”
The decision was immediately justified as Praveen Kumar - a 24-year-old in his fourth Test - beat Cook's bat three times in the opening over.
Zaheer generated plenty of movement from the Nursery End and claimed the first wicket when an inswinger trapped Cook leg before wicket for 12, the first time the Essex opener had been dismissed for fewer than 55 since December.
Captain Strauss, who escaped being run out for two when Ishant Sharma's throw missed the stumps, looked nervous and tentative as he sought to end a run of low Test scores.
But after prodding his way to 22 off 83 balls, he was tempted by a short ball from Zaheer soon after lunch and top-edged an attempted hook to Sharma at fine leg.
Trott was totally bamboozled by off-spinner Harbhajan's first delivery of the series, the ball clipping the edge of his bat and glancing off Dravid's outstretched right hand.
The Warwickshire man had reached 32 when a snorter from Zaheer ripped off the seam, took the edge and flew between Dhoni and Dravid.
Zaheer left the field midway through his next over after clutching his hamstring during his follow-through.
In his absence, Trott and Kevin Pietersen took their partnership to 65, the latter playing and missing several times and looking jumpy at the crease.
Attempting to make his presence felt, he tried to smash Harbhajan out of the ground and was fortunate that Sharma misjudged the catch at long-on.
With an improved forecast for the remainder of the match, England will be looking to post an imposing total before unleashing their trio of seamers - with Stuart Broad preferred to Tim Bresnan - on India's star-studded batting line-up.
Listen to Jonathan Agnew and Geoff Boycott's review of each day's play on the TMS Podcast page.