Rahul Dravid’s 146* vs England, 2011: When ‘The Wall’ Carried His Bat Against England

In the first match of the Ashes 2023 at Edgbaston, Usman Khawaja opened the batting for Australia and batted beautifully as he looked like the only settled batter in the Aussie line-up. Wickets kept falling down from the other end, but Khawaja looked in good form. However, he got out and was short of achieving the feat of carrying the bat. In this article we talk about what carrying the bat means and how Rahul Dravid achieved this feat against England back in 2011.

What Is Carrying The Bat?

In cricket, the phrase “carrying the bat” refers to a situation in which an opening batter remains not out at the end of an innings where all the 10 wickets have fallen. It is extremely rare and difficult to achieve and only 4 Indian batsmen managed to achieve this feat. Sunil Gavaskar, Virender Sehwag, Rahul Dravid, and Cheteshwar Pujara.

Rahul Dravid Opens The Innings

In India’s tour of England in 2011, India was getting whitewashed 4-0 as no one looked in touch except one Rahul Dravid. In the 4th test match at the Oval, thanks to Ian Bell’s 235 and Kevin Pietersen’s 175, India was chasing a mammoth total of 591 runs. After India’s regular opener, Gautam Gambhir suffered a concussion while fielding, Dravid stepped up and opened the innings for India. Thus Dravid and Sehwag start the proceedings for India.

Indian Batting Collapse

Sehwag started attacking the ball from the start hitting 2 fours off Anderson’s first over, but Anderson got Sehwag out on the last ball of the over. Then in walked Dravid’s parter-in crime VVS Laxman, but he looked very uncomfortable against the English bowlers and soon edged a ball by Stuart Broad.

Then came to the crease India’s best batsman for generations, Sachin Tendulkar who was hunting for his 100th Century. Tendulkar looked in good touch and was hitting boundaries and the partnership between him and Rahul Dravid reached 55 runs. That’s when Tendulkar got out to Swann in a failed attempt to paddle sweep the spinner. The batting collapse didn’t seem to stop as Suresh Raina got out, then Ishant Sharma who was sent as a night watchman too was dismissed by Swann.

Dravid’s Rock-Solid Innings 

At the other end, however, Dravid seemed as if he was batting on a different pitch. He was in complete control and was finding the gaps beautifully well while wickets were falling from the other end. Dhoni came into bat and sought to stabilize the innings and stop the collapse. They together stitched a partnership of 42 runs before Dhoni too got out and India was now at 137/6.

Then Amit Mishra joined Rahul Dravid at the crease and he played a good knock. He hit boundaries and even hit a six off a ball by Swann. While on the other end, Dravid was able to hit his 35th Test century and the third in this series. After a partnership of 87 runs, Mishra too got out and got a pat on the back from Dravid for his 43 runs.

Rahul Dravid Carries The Bat 

A concussed Gautam Gambhir then came out to bat and soon enough got out and after that India were all out for 300. But one man remained not out, he batted from start to finish and carried his bat through the innings. Rahul Dravid with this knock of 146* proved to the world that he is by far one of the best Test batsmen in the world. India lost the match by innings in the end after they were asked to follow on and got all out for just 283 runs.

But this match will always be remembered for the valiance and endurance shown by ‘The Wall’ Rahul Dravid. In fact, he was awarded the Man of the Series as he scored a whopping 461 runs in the series.

Match Summary

England: 591/6d &  India: 300 &  283 (After Follow-On)
Result: England won by an innings and 8 runs

And with that, we come to the end of this article about the time when Rahul Dravid carried his bat against England. We hope you enjoyed reading this article, we will continue to bring you more content like this, till then adios!

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