Images from Day 1 of the fourth and final Test between India and England, at the Narendra Modi stadium, in Motera, Ahmedabad, on Thursday.
Axar Patel bagged four wickets and Ravichandran Ashwin three, as India dominated Day 1 of the fourth Test against England, at the Narendra Modi stadium, in Motera, Ahmedabad, on Thursday.
The tourists again collapsed to spin, bowled out for 205, their first innings lasting just 75.5 overs after electing to bat.
In reply, India lost opener Shubhman Gill early and were 24 for 1 at stumps, with Rohit Sharma (8) and Cheteshwar Pujara (15) at the crease.
Gill did not even open his account, dismissed by James Anderson off the third delivery of India’s first innings.
Earlier, in the post-tea session, Axar missed out on another five-wicket haul, snaring 4 for 68 runs, while Ashwin claimed 3 for 47 and Washington Sundar (1-14) the wicket of Ben Stokes.
Mohammed Siraj bowled his heart out, returning figures of 2 for 45, as India dominated the opening day with the ball.
Ben Stokes top-scored for England with 55 and Daniel Lawrence compiled a gritty 46 even as England's batting nightmare continued in India.
Like the previous session, the post-tea session started well for India.
Ashwin finally got Ollie Pope, who had survived a confident shout from the spinner earlier in the over. The batsman played for the turn and clipped Ashwin’s third delivery straight into the hands of the fielder at short leg.
The umpires checked for the bump ball, and replays showed it had gone off the inside edge on to the pads for Shubman Gill to take a simple catch at short leg.
Pope went back after scoring 29 as England were reduced to 166 for six.
Ashwin struck again in the next over, this time accounting for Ben Foakes (1). The batsman was drawn forward by a flighted delivery and got an edge which was well-taken by Ajinkya Rahane at slips.
Daniel Lawrence flattered to deceive. He threw his wicket away attempting a rash shot against Axar and was stumped after a well-compiled, dour 46 and England were reduced to 188 for 8.
Axar then picked his fourth wicket, striking a few balls later.
He trapped Dominic Bess leg before wicket. The batsman was struck right in front by a full arm delivery but decided to review it. The impact was in line and the ball crashing into the leg stump. England lost their ninth wicket for 189.
Ashwin ended England's first innings with the wicket of Jack Leach leg before wicket for seven. The impact was in line and the ball going on to hit the stumps.
Young Axar Patel continued his wicket ways, as England were reduced to 74 for 3 by lunch on Day 1 of the fourth and final Test against India, at the Narendra Modi stadium, in Motera, Ahmedabad, on Thursday.
He had figures of 2 for 21 at the break.
Jonny Bairstow (batting 28) and Ben Stokes (batting 24) steadied the England innings in a fourth-wicket partnership to see them through to lunch without further damage.
The in-form left-arm orthodox spinner was brought into the attack in the sixth over as India introduced spin early and struck immediately.
Dominic Sibley defended his first delivery to the off-side, but was dismissed off the next.
Axar, who took 18 wickets in the last two Tests, including three five-wicket hauls, tasted success immediately, having Sibley bowled for two. The opener tried to defend off the front foot but got a thick inside edge which crashed into the leg stump.
It was a perfect start by Axar, as he began his with a wicket-maiden.
He struck again in his second over as Zak Crawley came down the track in an attempt to loft the ball down the ground, but was caught by Mohammed Siraj at mid-off after scoring just 9.
Certainly, poor cricket from the England opener. He looked to take on Axar early on and England were in trouble at 15 for 2.
The visitors went into the first drinks break on 30 for 2 after 12 overs, but their misery continued as Siraj struck with the big wicket of Joe Root immediately after the break.
England’s captain looked to defend an in-swinger from the Indian pacer but was beaten all ends up, struck right in front of the stumps.
Root walked back for 5 without taking the review, leaving England in trouble on 30 for 3.
After the fall of three wickets, Stokes and Bairstow tried to make technical adjustments and showed how to grind it out.
Bairstow (28 batting, 64 balls). after a terrible pink ball Test, looked more assured as he struck six boundaries. He punished the fast bowlers whenever they offered width and also negotiated Patel's straight deliveries with his bat close to the pads and assured front-foot movement.
Ravichandran Ashwin (3-2-7-0) was introduced into the attack in the 20th over as Virat Kohli kept up the pressure by having Patel continue at one end and rotate his two pacers at the other end.
Stokes (24 batting, 40 balls) showed patience, leaving any deliveries outside the off-stump, but lofted Ashwin for a six in his very first over.
However, Ashwin got extra bounce and troubled Stokes with a couple of lovely deliveries.
The Stokes-Bairstow partnership yielded 44 runs for the unbroken fourth wicket and looked to stem the rot set in by Patel.
The first day Motera pitch did not have any extraordinary turn on offer for the bowlers and can be safely called good for batsmen if they apply themselves.
Ben Stokes combined caution with aggression to register his 24th Test half-century and prop England after a poor morning session and guide them to 144 for 5 at tea.
The track offered both turn and bounce, but not as consistently as it did in the previous Test, letting England’s middle-order, led by Stokes, give a far better account of itself.
A bit more discretion would have had England in a better position. Nevertheless, they will be happy with the showing in the post-lunch session, after Axar Patel (2-48) had them reeling early in the morning and the paltry 112 and 81 they scored in the 'Pink ball' third Test at the same venue.
Stokes's knock of 55 off 121 balls, comprised five fours and two huge sixes -- one each off Ravichandran Ashwin (10-4-17-0) and Washington Sundar (7-1-14-1) over long-off and long-on respectively.
Young Ollie Pope (21 batting), who was rated very highly by Sachin Tendulkar during England's home Test matches, used his feet well against spinners to go into the tea break unbeaten with Dan Lawrence (15 batting).
Mohammed Siraj gave India the first breakthrough of the post-lunch session with his second wicket of the match. Bairstow, who was given out caught behind after scoring 28.
The incoming delivery came in sharply and went narrowly missing the inside edge before clipping the pad on the way through to the wicketkeeper.
Bairstow took the review. Ultra-Edge showed the ball missing the bat. However, the television umpire also checked for LBW, and ball tracker showed the impact in line and the ball going on to clip the top of the stumps.
The umpire's decision thus stayed and Bairstow walked back shaking his head in disbelief as England lost their fourth wicket.
That delivery, which was clocked 146.4 kph, beat Bairstow for pace. Siraj impressed while taking those two wickets for 26 in eight overs.
Washington Sundar, who replaced Siraj, got good turn from the wicket immediately and gave India another wicket, dismissing Stokes just when the batsman was looking good for a big innings.
His fuller delivery saw Stokes play for the turn and get struck plumb in front.
Stokes, who had completed his fifty a little earlier, walked back without asking for a review, despite Ollie Pope having a chat with him, after a good innings of 55.
England went into the tea break on 144 for 5 from 56 overs, having lost two wickets for 70 runs in 31 overs in the post-lunch session.
Pope was unbeaten after a gritty 21 from 73 balls, while Lawrence was 15 not out at the break.
Axar and Siraj picked up two wickets each, while Sundar got the big one of Stokes.