England could not have asked for a better start after skipper Joe Root lost the toss and they were put to bowl first at Headingley. James Anderson, in particular, bowled an exceptional first spell where he finished with figures of 8-5-6-3, putting the hosts in the advantageous position. Throughout the innings, the English bowlers were determined in hitting the right line and length, exploiting the spongy wicket on offer.
In the post-match press conference, the veteran bowler admitted that it was a conscious effort from the team to shut down the outside noise and focus on their own game.
"We have made a conscious effort of trying to just focus on us, on what we do well and try and ignore everything else, the outside noise or wherever they might be going on, and just yet and make sure there's a real focus on what we do well," Anderson said after the day's play.
"I think that you know the first three or four days at Lord's, we probably played brilliantly and we didn't really get involved in too much discussion. Maybe until day three, and then after that, maybe just at times it did affect a little bit or as individuals it did affect a little bit."
At 4/2, with Virat Kohli still there at the crease, there was still plenty of work left to be done for the English bowlers. Anderson, who has had a wood over the Indian skipper, was once again amidst things, dismissing Kohli with a delivery that shaped away. Anderson stated that it was very special to be on the happier side of things against the Indian skipper.
"I think so (it was special). We (Kohli and Anderson) have had some great battles over the years. He is a fantastic player and someone you want to keep quiet as a team. Especially, in a five-match series, if he gets going he can be very disruptive.
"I think the way we have bowled to him throughout the series has been very very good. We just got to keep doing that and keep him quiet as often as we can."
Thus far in the series, England have been one-dimensional, either showing great character with the bat or the ball. However, at Headingley, there was a collective effort from both the units, as they first shot India down to 78 before waltzing their way out on the day, at 120/0, with the openers Rory Burns (52) and Haseeb Hameed (60) staying unbeaten.
"In a performance like that, I think it doesn't get much better and the way the two guys played the day with the bat was outstanding, and exactly what we've been talking about throughout this series," he said hailing their opening duo's effort.