England batsman made Indian bowlers toil hard in the first innings of the first Test at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai as they posted 578 runs. Veteran spinner Ravichandran Ashwin attained a unique record during England’s 190-over stay in the middle.
After England won the toss end elected to bat first in Chennai, Joe Root & Co piled on runs against the Indian bowlers. Root scored a fine double century well supported by half-centuries from Dominic Sibley and Ben Stokes to post 578 runs on the board.
While the flat pitch didn’t help India’s cause, their fielders also kept themselves on the field for a longer period with sloppy efforts as England batted for 190.1 overs, spanning over two days and till the early phase of the morning session on Day 3.
As a result, all the Indian bowlers struggled despite trying hard, on a surface that has now slowed down and is showing uneven bounce. Ravichandran Ashwin, who scalped three wickets returned with a unique record up his sleeves, something which clearly exposes England’s dominance and how they made merry to add to India’s woes.
Most overs in an innings by Ravichandran Ashwin
53.1 vs Eng Chennai 2020/21*
53.0 vs Aus Adelaide 2011/12
52.5 vs Aus Adelaide 2018/19
52.3 vs Eng Kolkata 2012/13
52.1 vs WI Mumbai WS 2011/12
The last time Ravichandran Ashwin had bowled in excess of 50 overs in an innings was slightly more than two years ago, during India’s Test series opener versus Australia in their own den in 2018-19. Three out of the five, from the above list, have come for Ashwin while playing in home conditions.
Meanwhile, speaking about India innings, the hosts are struggling to save the follow-on. England spinner Dom Bess was spot on with the ball scalping four wickets including the key wickets of Virat Kohli, Ajinkya Rahane, and Cheteshwar Pujara.
India will want a big stand from Washington Sundar and Ravichandran Ashwin to reduce the gap in Chennai.