Bowling to a plan
Mahendra Singh Dhoni's 64 off 118 balls bolstered an Indian innings that was sagging after Rahul Dravid's departure at 142 for 5. Though he smacked ten fours, Dhoni's innings was different from the belligerent bashing that Indian fans have got used to seeing. The graphic below shows the percentage of deliveries that Dhoni played various shots to.
England have approached the series with definite plans to snare the Indian batsmen. They cut off Dhoni's favourite scoring zones by pushing him on to the back foot and not allowing him to unleash his ferocious drives. Dhoni possesses a Test strike rate of 80.57 but today he played 57 defensive shots. He drove just 18 balls on the front foot and had to collect 37 runs behind square on both sides of the wicket.
George Binoy is editorial assistant of Cricinfo