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How dominant India outplayed England to take 2-1 series lead

Last updated on: February 18, 2024 18:00 IST
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Glimpses from Day 4 of the third Test between India and England in Rajkot on Sunday.

IMAGE: India picked up a crushing win over England in Rajkot to take a 2-1 lead in the five-match Test series. Photograph: Amit Dave/Reuters

India set England a huge target and then skittled the tourists out for 122 to romp to a 434-run victory in the third Test and go 2-1 up in the five-match series on Sunday.

India had been in the box seat since grabbing a handy first-innings lead of 126 and they never took their foot off the pedal at the Saurashtra Cricket Association Stadium.


Opener Yashasvi Jaiswal smashed an unbeaten 214, Shubman Gill made 91 and debutant Sarfaraz Khan struck his second fifty of the match before India declared their second innings on 430-4.

IMAGE: Yashasvi Jaiswal celebrates after reaching his double century. Photograph: Amit Dave/Reuters

Jaiswal equalled Wasim Akram's record of hitting 12 sixes in a Test innings and it followed his 209 in the second test in Visakhapatnam.

Chasing an improbable 557 for victory, England slumped to 50-7 with Ravindra Jadeja (5-41) wrecking their middle order.

IMAGE: Kuldeep Yadav celebrates with teammates after taking the lbw wicket of England's Ben Stokes. Photograph: Amit Dave/Reuters

Once Kuldeep Yadav dismissed England captain Ben Stokes lbw for 15, the match was effectively over.

Mark Wood made a quickfire 33 before being the last England batter dismissed as India registered their biggest Test win in terms of runs.

IMAGE: England's Ben Stokes in action. Photograph: Amit Dave/Reuters

"England played well and put us under pressure but we have class bowlers and the message was to stay calm," home captain Rohit Sharma said.

"It is easy to drift away from what you do as a team but I am really proud of how we came back."

IMAGE: Yashasvi Jaiswal in action. Photograph: Amit Dave/Reuters


After play resumed on the penultimate day, Gill consolidated India's position with his assured accumulation of runs.

Gill was run out after a misunderstanding with Kuldeep Yadav but there was no respite for England as Jaiswal, who had retired hurt on 104 on Saturday, walked in.

IMAGE: Sarfaraz Khan and Yashasvi Jaiswal run between the wickets. Photograph: Amit Dave/Reuters

Jaiswal and Sarfaraz tore into the England attack and it suddenly started raining boundaries as they plundered 172 runs off 158 deliveries.

Jaiswal took a single off Root to bring up his double hundred, while Sarfaraz smashed three sixes in his unbeaten 68.

IMAGE: Sarfaraz Khan celebrates his half-century. Photograph: Amit Dave/Reuters

Left with a mountain to climb, England lost their openers cheaply and could never arrest the slide.

Ben Duckett (four), who smashed 153 in the first innings, was run out after a horrible mix-up with Zak Crawley (11), who was trapped lbw by Jasprit Bumrah.

IMAGE: Ben Duckett is run out by India's Mohammed Siraj. Photograph: Amit Dave/Reuters

Jadeja mowed down the England middle order dismissing Ollie Pope, Jonny Bairstow and Root.

Once Kuldeep removed England captain Ben Stokes lbw for 15, the match was effectively over.

IMAGE: Jasprit Bumrah celebrates with teammates after taking the lbw wicket of England's Zak Crawley. Photograph: Amit Dave/Reuters

Jadeja's seven-wicket match haul, along with his hundred in the first innings, earned him the player of the match award at his home ground.

IMAGE: Rohit Sharma celebrates after taking the catch to take the wicket of England's Ollie Pope, bowled by Ravindra Jadeja. Photograph: Amit Dave/Reuters

"Ben Duckett played an unbelievable first innings and that was the tone we wanted to set through the whole innings," Stokes said after the loss.

"We will leave this game behind us. We have to win the next two to win the series and that's what we will be trying to do."

The fourth Test, scheduled in Ranchi, begins on Friday.

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