Day 4: Ashwin Picks Six, India Lose Rohit Early in 420-Run Chase
Live updates from Day 4 of the Chennai Test between India and England.
India’s 420-run chase did not start off in the best possible fashion during the final session of Day 4 as Jack Leach drew first blood to send Rohit Sharma packing for 12. From then on in, Shubman Gill and Cheteshwar Pujara ensured India went to Stumps without any further scares in Chennai. At Stumps, India were 39/1, 381 runs away from the target as England stayed in command of proceedings.
R Ashwin had led the charge for India picking six wickets, his 28th five-wicket haul in Tests, in England’s second innings. Ashwin started things off with the first ball of the innings when he dismissed Rory Burns, added the scalps of Dom Sibley, Ben Stokes, Dom Bess, Jofra Archer and James Anderson to his tally.
Shahbaz Nadeem picked two wickets, while Ishant Sharma and Jasprit Bumrah also picked one each.
Pacer Ishant Sharma got into the act and picked his 300th Test wicket when he trapped Dan Lawrence lbw before Bumrah struck in his second over, trapping Root LBW for 40 to reduce England to 101/5 before Tea.
Starting off with the new ball in England’s second innings, R Ashwin picked the wickets of both openers once the visitors decided to bat again after bowling India out for 337 on Day 4 of the Chennai Test.
Rory Burns was the first wicket to fall, off the first delivery of the innings. The ball turned sharply taking the edge of the bat of Burns and went straight into the hands of Ajinkya Rahane at the slips for a duck
Dominic Sibley was the next Ashwin wicket, out for 16.
Root and Lawrence put together a 25-run partnership with the skipper sweeping very effectively at every possible chance to keep the scoreboard moving.
Virat Kohli brought on the experienced Ishant Sharma, who responded with a wicket in the second over. Ishant trapped Lawrence LBW for 18 to pick up his 300th Test wicket. England at 58/3, had Ben Stokes walk out to join Root after the dismissal.
Stokes’ aggressive approach did not bring him too much success this time as he was foxed by Ashwin for 7.
Even though Ollie Pope found it tough against Ashwin, he and Root then put on a 30-run stand for the fifth wicket before Bumrah jagged one back in sharply to trap the England captain LBW for 40. England were at 101/5 with Jos Buttler walking in to join Pope.
The duo played out the rest of the session watchfully and added 18 runs in the final 20 minutes as England went into Tea with the lead at 360.
Needing to accelerate, Pope smashed two boundaries after Tea before an attempted third went straight to the hands of Rohit Sharma of Shahbaz Nadeem.
Jos Buttler and Dom Bess batted on, surprisingly at slow pace after Tea, and stretched the lead beyond 400 runs. Buttler, who will be returning to UK after this Test, danced down the track to Nadeem but missed the line completely, allowing Pant to complete a simple stumping. England at the time led by 406.
Of the very next over, Bess failed to keep one from Ashwin out and was trapped LBW for 25 and the lead at 408.
11 runs for England later, Ashwin struck again as he went through the gates of Jofra Archer to complete his 28th five-wicket haul. A couple of deliveries later, James Anderson became Ashwin’s sixth wicket as England were bowled out for 178. India needed 420 runs to pull off the win.
Rohit Sharma (12) and Shubman Gill played out a watchful first five overs and put away the bad balls elegantly before the senior pro played down the wrong line against Jack Leach saw the woodwork disturbed. India were 25/1 with Cheteshwar Pujara (12*) joining Gill (15*) in the middle.
The duo ensured England had no further joy in the rest of the evening as India went to stumps at 39/1.
Earlier, India got bundled out for 337 in their first innings, thus conceding a massive lead of 241 runs in reply to England's 578.
For India, Washington Sundar remained unbeaten on 85 while Jasprit Bumrah was the last wicket to fall with Ben Stokes taking a catch in the slips for Anderson’s second wicket of the match.
R Ashwin and Washington Sundar’s overnight partnership was ended by Jack Leach after he sent Ashwin back to the dressing room. The Indian spinner was caught-behind by Jos Buttler on 31, having faced 91 deliveries.
India started Day 4 of the Chennai Test on the overnight score of 257/6 after England were bowled out for 578 on Sunday’s morning session.
Sundar continued his form from Australia and completed his half-century before the 80 run stand came to an end.
Shahbaz Nadeem, who came in next, went back to the dressing room without troubling the scorers, becoming the second scalp of Leach. Ishant Sharma (4) also didn't stay long at the crease and was out caught at short-leg on a well directed short-delivery from James Anderson.
Jasprit Bumrah was the last wicket to fall as he was caught brilliantly at the slips by Ben Stokes against Anderson. Sundar remained unbeaten on 85 for which he faced 138 deliveries. He scored 12 boundaries and two sixes during the course of his innings.
Off-spinner Dominic Bess was the pick of the England bowlers as he scalped four wickets in the 26 overs he bowled. Leach, Jofra Archer and Anderson scalped two-two wickets each.
On Day 3, despite Rishabh Pant and Cheteshwar Pujara’s fightback, England remained in control of the match. India ended Day 3 on 257 runs for six wickets in reply to England's 578 at the M.A. Chidambaram stadium.
At one point, England had reduced India to 73/4 earlier in the day with captain Virat Kohli (11), Ajinkya Rahane (1), Rohit Sharma (6) and Shubman Gill (29) being dismissed cheaply.
Pant put up a measured counter-attack, targeting Leach and refraining himself from going after Bess. He smashed nine fours and five sixes and was dismissed when he finally mistimed a lofted shot off Bess. Leach completed the catch at deep cover to leave Pant nine runs short of his third Test century.
Pujara was dismissed by Bess in a rather bizarre fashion. The Indian batsman attempted a pull shot. The ball rebound off Pope's shoulder at short leg before looping to Burns at short midwicket.
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