India’s tail didn’t last long once the defiant Ashwin-Sundar stand was broken. The second new ball did the trick for England, with the visitors picking the remaining four wickets to bowl India out.However, Joe Root’s men decided against enforcing the follow on and came out to bat for a couple of overs before the break. But they couldn’t properly negotiate that, losing Rory Burns on the first ball of their 2nd innings.Brief scores: England 578 all out and 1/1 ( Dominic Sibley 0*, Daniel Lawrence 0*; Ravichandran Ashwin 0/1) lead India 337 all out by 242 runsIndia started the day in promising fashion, with Ravichandran Ashwin and Washington Sundar looking comfortable at the crease.Ashwin was comfortable playing second fiddle, and Sundar once again showcased his batting abilities on home turf.The youngster was confident throughout, and the duo put up 80 runs together. But things quickly unravelled after England took the new ball.Jack Leach came back after a disappointing first day. The bounce off the pitch helped him considerably.Leach first got Ashwin with a delivery that jumped on the batsman, and the extra bounce did it again for the left-arm spinner as he sent Shahbaz Nadeem packing.
Despite India’s loss of wickets, Washington Sundar was in his element. He batted with the tail superbly, attacking England’s pacers whenever he had the chance.But the youngster was left stranded on 85, missing out on what would have been a glorious century.Ishant Sharma couldn’t negotiate Anderson’s bouncer, with the England seamer getting his first wicket of the game.He got his second in his next over as Ben Stokes took a blinder at slip to dismiss Jasprit Bumrah for a duck.What target will England set for India? Joe Root’s wicket will once again be key for IndiaEngland then came out to bat for two overs but made an ominous start.
It was Ashwin’s turn to use the bounce to great effect for India, and Rory Burns edged one to slip.The visitors have a lead of 242 runs and will not be too bothered by losing a wicket before lunch. They will target a lead of 400+ today, while making sure that they are left with enough overs to bowl out India in the 2nd innings.Expect England to come out firing on all cylinders, as they pick up the pace post lunch.For India, the task is simple: build up the pressure to keep the scoring rate in check. Making England bat as long as possible will also increase their chances of survival in this Test.Taking wickets in quick succession can help their cause too.India’s bowlers would look to make the most of the new ball and the deteriorating day four pitch.
Published 08 Feb 2021, 12:35 IST