India struggled through the first session of the third Test match at Birmingham, getting to 75 for four with all the top four batsmen back to the pavilion.
Virender Sehwag departed as quickly as he had arrived, something of an anti-climax after the build-up associated with his arrival in England. Sehwag had missed the first couple of Tests, both of which India had gone on to lose. Off the first ball on his return, Sehwag decided to let go of the short ball but failed to put his gloves out of the way of the ball and gloved it to the wicket-keeper.
For the rest of the first half hour, Gautam Gambhir played awkwardly, edging many a times towards the slips but survived. It was only towards the end of the first hour’s play that he began to get behind the ball better, even as the ball stopped doing the alarming things that it had threatened to do under the cloudy conditions.
With the only in-form batsman of the series for India, Rahul Dravid, at the other end, Gambhir threatened to take the game away from the English side. The pair added 51 for the second wicket and for most of the second bit of the innings, looked to be getting comfortable.
Unfortunately, much like it has happened throughout the series for India, they lost a wicket, quarter of a session before the break and followed it up with another. Gambhir inside-edged one from Tim Bresnan on to the stumps, while Sachin Tendulkar’s bad run of form continued, as he edged Broad to the slips.
However, the biggest wicket of the session came at the stroke of lunch when Bresnan got one to swing away from Dravid. The batsman missed the ball completely and was bowled to leave India tottering at 75 for four at lunch.
India had made three changes to their line-up, getting in Sehwag, Gambhir and Amit Mishra in place of Abhinav Mukund, Yuvraj Singh and Harbhajan Singh.