Monty emulates Bedi
Monty Panesar has captured the imagination of cricket lovers throughout the world, and over the last two days he gave further proof of his talent, becoming the first spinner to take six wickets in a first-innings of an opposition's batting at Lord's since Bishan Singh Bedi took 6 for 226 in 1974.
For a spinner to take six wickets is the first innings is unusual, but it's even more uncommon for five of those dismissals to come through the lbw mode. Thanks to Asad Rauf's brave umpiring - three of those dismissals were pad-first cases, when the batsmen played with their bats behind their pads - Panesar achieved a feat that's only been done four times before, and never by a spinner. Terry Alderman, Curtly Ambrose, Richard Johnson and Mohammad Zahid are the only others to have nailed five lbws in a single innings.
|Bowler||Figures||Against||Venue & year|
|Terry Alderman||33.5-6-105-5||Pakistan||Melbourne, 1989-90|
|Curtly Ambrose||22.4-10-45-8||England||Barbados, 1989-90|
|Mohammad Zahid||20-3-66-7||New Zealand||Rawalpindi, 1996-97|
|Richard Johnson||12-4-33-6||Zimbabwe||Chester-le-Street, 2003|
|Monty Panesar||36.1-3-129-6||West Indies||Lord's, 2007|
Panesar also became the first England bowler in 12 years to take six in a single innings at Lord's - the last one to do it was Dominic Cork, when he took 7 for 43 in 1995 against ... you guessed it, West Indies again.
After Panesar did his bit, though, England still needed quick runs to try and force victory, and they found their man in Kevin Pietersen, who blasted a 138-ball 109. He'd missed out in the first innings, but he made up for that lapse this time around, against one of the friendliest West Indian attacks to have ever toured England. Usually happy to test the batsmen with short deliveries and bouncers, this West Indian attack had neither the pace nor the inclination to push the batsmen on the back foot: off the 138 balls Pietersen faced, only two were bouncers.
The result was Pietersen had ample opportunity to plonk his front foot forward and drive on either side of the wicket. As the table below shows, 78 of his 109 runs came from front-foot drives.
|Front-foot drive - off side||33||48||9|
|Front-foot drive - on-side||34||30||1|
The 135 runs he scored in this match has pushed Pietersen's average back over 50 - he now averages 50.50 from 24 Tests with seven centuries. (Click here for Pietersen's cumulative career average.)