India have beaten England by 10 wickets inside two days in the Pink-Ball test match to knock them out of contention from the finals of the World Test Championship. They have chased down 49 needed for victory in just 7.4 overs and have taken a 2-1 lead in the series with one Test match still to play. In the process, they have bettered their chance of playing the WTC final against New Zealand at Lord’s in June later this year. More about the report in detail below.
As many as 17 wickets fell on day 2 of the Pink-Ball Test with Joe Root picking up his career-best of 5 for 8 in the Indian first innings. India lost their last seven wickets pretty quickly inside the first session starting at 99 for 3 and being bowled out for 145. Root got enough help from the wicket to keep the Indian lower-order guessing. The pitch showed increasing signs of turn and bounce as England used none of their seamers in the first session on day 2. India took a 33-run lead with England looking forward to batting better in the second innings.
Spin Twins Make It India’s Game
Meanwhile, no one expected things to pan out the way they did in the second innings or England. Axar Patel took a wicket of the very first ball and was in with a chance to pick up a hat-trick. It was him and Ravichandran Ashwin bowling in tandem throughout the England second innings. After picking up a six-for in the first innings, Axar took a five-wicket haul in the second. They have bowled out for 81 in the second innings with Ravichandran Ashwin going past 400 Test wickets. In the process, he dismissed Ben Stokes for the 11th time in his career. Jofra Archer was Ashwin’s 400 scalp in red-ball cricket. Axar Patel, meanwhile took 11 wickets in the game and won the Man of the Match Award.
England batters found batting even more difficult in the second innings. They had absolutely no idea as to how the pitch behaved throughout the phase of play. Stokes top-scored with 25 in the second innings while Root and Ollie Pope scored 19 and 12 respectively.
With India needing 48 needing to win in the second innings, Rohit Sharma (25) and Shubman Gill (15) got the runs inside eight overs for an early finish.
England 112 (Zak Crawley 53; Axar Patel 6-38) and 81 (Axar Patel 5-32) lost to India 145 (Rohit Sharma 66; Joe Root 5-8, Jack 4-54) and 49/0 (Rohit Sharma 25*)