India v England: Alastair Cook sets century record on day two
India v England: Alastair Cook sets a record for England Test centuries with his 23rd on day two of the third Test against India
Alastair Cook hit his 23rd Test hundred to become England’s most prolific century maker, taking his side to 216-1 on day two of the third Test.
England trail by 100 runs to India’s first innings score of 316 after the tourists snapped up the final three wickets for 43 runs.
Cook is well-placed on 136 not out with Jonathan Trott, who needs a score after a barren run of form, on 21.
The England captain surpassed Wally Hammond, Colin Cowdrey and Geoffrey Boycott on 22 centuries to re-write the record books.
During Thursday’s knock he also became the youngest batsman to pass 7,000 Test runs.
Just how much more could Cook achieve when he is barely halfway through his career is another question.
Admirably supported by Nick Compton (57), who scored his maiden half-century, the opening pair moved to 165 for none before the Somerset batsman was caught leg before.
Compton will be happy to final post a score of note after making several starts in his debut series.
Once again he looked assured and more than able to cope with the variety of India’s attack. But with time he will have to adjust the tempo of his innings.
England took only an hour to wrap up the hosts’ innings in the morning.
Monty Panesar took two of the final wickets to fall Zaheer Khan and Ishant Sharma to finish with figures of four for 90 off 40 overs – another magnificent performance from a bowler, whose international career looked all but over two matches ago.
Mahendra Singh Dhoni produced his first score of the series with a credible 52, before Steven Finn showed why he was selected ahead of Stuart Broad.
A steep delivery bouncing from back of length caught India’s skipper by surprise and Graeme Swann took a smart catch in the slips diving away to his right to bowl India out.
England will look to bat India out of the game on day three and also run them ragged in the field as their old fitness frailties surfaced again on day two.