The Indian Test batting has been extremely questionable in the recent past as there have been frequent batting collapses leaving India vulnerable to counter-attacks from oppositions.
It is a sorry state of affairs for the Indian fans as they were used to the herculean showdowns from players like Rahul Dravid, Virender Sehwag, Sachin Tendulkar, VVS Laxman and Saurav Ganguly to get their daily dose of pride in Test cricket.
Things have now changed as the Indian batting line-up is trying to grapple with some severe pulsating fluctuations that have been plaguing India for quite a good deal of time.
As the series with England comes near and near, we will take a look at five glorious innings by Indians against the Englishmen in red-ball cricket. This will be a reminder to the Indians that how exactly Indians used to make merry against the mighty English batting.
Karun Nair – 303*
This was an extraordinary display from the youngster trying to make a living for himself in the most enduring format of the sport. England imposed a monumental 477 in the first innings. Moeen Ali battered a blistering ton that was aptly laced with brilliant knocks from Joe Root, Liam Dawson and Adil Rashid. India was off to a flyer, thanks to some high-flying KL Rahul and Parthiv Patel. After the opening blistering tempest of the opening duo, the middle-order faced an unexpected collapse to introduce Karun Nair to the game of the big boys. The youngster displayed an extremely aggressive approach in taking out the English force. He carved a few exquisite strokes that rattled the experienced campaigners from England. He stayed unbeaten till the very end with an extraordinary score of 303 from 381 balls, hammering a staggering 32 fours and 4 sixes. Thanks to his brilliant knock, India managed to pile up 759 for the loss of 7. He also became the only Indian barring Sehwag to hammer a triple-century in Test cricket.
Virat Kohli – 235
It was against the likes of England and Australia in 2014, Virat Kohli started taking flight with the willow in his hand. In 2016, he pumped this extraordinary knock to leave England shattered to its last atom. England posed a brilliant 400 in the first innings, courtesy of a scintillating ton from Keaton Jennings and a belligerent 76 from Jos Buttler. Despite the early fall of Rahul and Pujara, Kohli and Vijay played two wondrous knocks, consigning the English hopes of an advantage to hell. Vijay blasted 136 while Kohli knocked 235. Barring Vijay, Kohli played another crucial partnership with Jayant Yadav who also smashed an exciting ton. Kohli was the penultimate wicket to fall as Woakes got the better of him. In his sublime knock, he clubbed 25 fours and 1 six.
Vinod Kambli – 224
One of the most talented southpaws of the Indian cricket team who lost his career to some controversial decisions and allegations, Vinod Kambli carved a few extraordinary innings of his own. He fashioned this knock against England with a handful of exquisite strokes. England batted first and managed to score 347 in the first innings riding on the back of an extraordinary century from Graeme Hick. The Indians were off to a rollicking start, courtesy of some ecstatic batting from Navjot Sidhu, Manoj Prabhakar and the man of the show, Vinod Kambli. Kambli was an extremely belligerent striker of the ball and did not mince his intentions while playing those classic strikes. He hammered a staggering 224 from 411 deliveries, helping India in posting a mammoth total of 591 in the first innings. Kambli batted until the eighth wicket and was finally removed by Lewis. He struck 23 fours in his mind-bending knock.
Gundappa Vishwanath – 222
Despite a couple of flamboyant displays, India could not prise out a victory from this match. These were the baby steps for the Indian cricket team as they were learning to challenge the might of the foreign teams. Batting first, India was in hot waters with Pranab Roy and Gavaskar returning to the stands early. Vengsarkar and Gundappa Vishwanath started knocking out exotic strokes all around the park. Vengsarkar had to retire due to an injury ad that brought in Yashpal Sharma who struck another gem of a knock. Sharma scored 140 while Vishwanath managed to clobber 222 runs from 374 balls, hammering 31 fours.
Sunil Gavaskar – 221
No Indian batting list can be complete without the likes of Tendulkar or Gavaskar. Gavaskar played a single-handed showdown to almost win India a remarkable victory over England, only for the latter to have a lucky escape. Chasing a mammoth total of 438 runs, India was off to an absolute blinder. Gavaskar and Chetan Chauhan were in no mood to relent unless Willis got the better of the latter. Vengsarkar stitched another decent partnership with Gavaskar, bringing India closer to a remarkable dream of an impossible victory. Unfortunately, after Vengsarkar departed, things fell apart for the Indians as they lost 7 wickets in a span of just 57 runs. While trying to hammer a few fiery strokes, Gavaskar got dismissed for 221 from 443 deliveries. He clobbered 21 fours in his scintillating innings against England.