India vs England: Thought Rishabh Pant was playing in the IPL, says Jack Leach

The left-arm spinner says his England team-mates helped him stay strong after the hammering he received from Rishabh Pant in the first Test in Chennai.

Jack Leach is cock-a-hoop after dismissing an India batsman during the first Test. - BCCI

England team-mates helped Jack Leach stay strong and bounce back from the hammering he received from Rishabh Pant during the first Test against India, the left-arm spinner said after his team’s 227-run win. Riding on productive bowling spells from Leach (4 for 76) and James Anderson (3 for 17), England took a 1-0 lead in the four-match series.

Leach, who was taken to the task by a belligerent Pant on the third day, shone brightly when the host came out to bat again.

“Thought he (Pant) was playing in the IPL. It’s a challenge that comes for a spinner. Was a tough evening that one but boys helped me stay strong,” Leach said after the match.

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Coming from the extremely cold England, it wasn’t easy to get acclimatised to the humid conditions in this part of the world. “Had a long time without any cricket (before the Sri Lanka series). It was about bowling those long overs in the heat. My first time in India. They have a great batting lineup and I knew the pressure that comes with it. Happy to take some wickets and get the boys over the line,” the 29-year-old spinner said.

Set a 420-run target to go one up in the rubber on the fifth day, India was bowled out for 192 in the second session, with captain Virat Kohli's half-century (72 off 104 balls) the major piece of resistance for the home team on a challenging M. A. Chidambaram pitch.