England’s bowlers were frustrated on the first day of the one-off Test match in India in eighteen years as India amassed 410 runs despite losing seven wickets in the day’s play. Test debutants Jemimah Rodrigues and Shubha Satheesh, along with half-tons from Yastika Bhatia and Deepti Sharma, helped India to their best innings total in home Test history as they plodded along at a canter for most of the afternoon and evening stretches.
The new ball was quickly taken by England, but Deepti looked unfazed, bringing up her third fifty in as many Tests by flicking Lauren Bell through square leg. She hasn’t lost on 60 overnight.
Strange events prevented India skipper Harmanpreet Kaur from scoring a fifty in a Test match when she was run out retreating up on 49. After Danni Wyatt’s direct hit bounced off the stumps at the non-striker’s end and Harmanpreet ran a single, she had initially celebrated reaching the milestone.
However, replays revealed that she had failed to ground her bat in time, seemingly getting it encapsulated in the crease. Bizarre still, the outing was a replay of her run-out in the World Cup semifinal in February, which again seemed to have been caused by a stuck bat.
SIX & that's the maiden Test5⃣0⃣ for @YastikaBhatia 👏 👏— BCCI Women (@BCCIWomen) December 14, 2023
1⃣0⃣0⃣-run stand between her & captain @ImHarmanpreet 🙌#TeamIndia inching closer to 300.
Follow the Match ▶️ https://t.co/UB89NFaqaJ #INDvENG | @IDFCFIRSTBank pic.twitter.com/d0UMsKCDFm
At 15, Bhatia top-edged Charlie Dean to mid-on, but Bell dropped a simple catch, denying England the opportunity to end her innings early. After Bhatia hit a six off Lauren Filer to reach her fifty in style, Bell was able to make up for her mistake by hanging onto an opportunity in a comparable position off the same bowler.
For two of the three debutants from India, it was a day to remember. Rodrigues, a Northern Superchargers stalwart in The Hundred, came to the lengthier format like a duck to water after being denied the opportunity to play in India’s two previous Test matches by the selectors. She added 68 runs to the total before Bell pinned back her middle stump.
In the meantime, Shubha, who was playing in her first Test match as well as her first appearance for India in any format, richly exceeded the selectors’ faith with an innings of 69 played before lunch. After scoring 49 and 99 in India’s four-day practice match, Shubha, 24, was unexpectedly called up to the Test team. She reached her half-century shortly before the interval with a beautiful drive down the ground for four.
Surprisingly, Sophie Ecclestone’s solitary wicket of the day came after she had taken ten in June’s Ashes Test. Nat Sciver-Brunt did the honours by diving at midwicket to pick off the young Indian batter.
In the previous match, England’s most recent red-ball match, Bell and Kate Cross had started with a successful extension of the new-ball partnership they had formed at Trent Bridge against Australia in June. In the opening forty minutes of play, the duo eliminated both openers, as India elected to bat first for the first time in a home Test since 2014.
𝗦𝘁𝘂𝗺𝗽𝘀!— BCCI Women (@BCCIWomen) December 14, 2023
Delightful day for #TeamIndia as the batters help reach 410/7 👌@Deepti_Sharma06 remains unbeaten on 60* 😎
Follow the match ▶️ https://t.co/UB89NFaqaJ#INDvENG | @IDFCFIRSTBank pic.twitter.com/O3vpqJ7stA
Bell had the opportunity to truly have Smriti Mandhana with her second ball of the day’s play, but Tammy Beaumont’s helmet hindered her and caused her to oversight the skied catch at short leg. In response, Bell angled the ball to the left-hander in the sixth over, where she attempted to cut but was only able to draw it onto her stumps.
After three overs, Cross finally got her comeuppance for Shafali Verma’s persistent probing line when she pushed the ball late off the pitch and dislodged Verma’s off stump.
However, the opening day belonged to the hosts as Shubha and Rodrigues combined for a 115-run partnership and India scored plenty of runs.
India vs England One-off Test Day 1: Brief Scores
India 410/7 (Shubha Satheesh 69, Jemima Rodrigues 68, Yastika Bhatia 66, Deepti Sharma 60*; Lauren Bell 2-64) vs England.