Bringing You the Daily Dispatch

India secures an impressive victory in the third Test as Jaiswal and Jadeja dismantle England.
Cricket Sport

India secures an impressive victory in the third Test as Jaiswal and Jadeja dismantle England.

It is probably for the best that Ben Stokes has little interest in career milestones because his 100th Test is one he will want to forget. This was his first genuine pummelling as England captain, India victorious by 434 runs to claim a richly deserved 2-1 series lead after overwhelming their opponents.

Feeling disheartened in draining temperatures due to Yashasvi Jaiswal’s outstanding unbeaten score of 214, the rising star at the forefront of the Indian team, England were given a hypothetical – although possibly unrealistic in their minds – target of 557 to win in four-and-a-half sessions. However, by 4:45pm on the fourth day, they had completely crumbled, being dismissed for just 122 runs in 39.4 overs.

The Rajkot crowd was eager for this exciting match, as India had already shown their dominance with England’s collapse to 319 all out on the third day. They were not disappointed, as Jaiswal matched Wasim Akram’s record of 12 sixes in a Test innings, bringing his total to 22 in the series, and their own Ravindra Jadeja took five wickets for 41 runs through his spin bowling.

Reworded: During the match, there was a moment when Jimmy Anderson, who is much older than his opponent by 19 years, was hit for three consecutive sixes after lunch. This proved that anything was possible. This was the most expensive over that Anderson had bowled since George Bailey hit him for 28 runs during the 2013-14 Ashes. After pausing at 104 due to back spasms the day before, Jaiswal resumed his innings with a powerful slog-sweep and a drive over extra cover, followed by a perfect straight hit.

Sarfaraz Khan, a rookie player, scored 68 runs in 72 balls, while Jaiswal achieved his second double century in just one hour during the afternoon session. This led to Rohit Sharma becoming the first captain to declare against Stokes. India declared at 430 for four, showing mercy towards England’s bowlers and beginning a thorough investigation.

During this time, Ravichandran Ashwin was returning from his urgent family matter in Chennai. He arrived during the tea break with only eight wickets remaining for him to add to his total of 500. Ben Duckett was unfortunately run out in a chaotic manner, similar to the type of collapses that result in defeat. Zak Crawley was caught out by Jaspit Bumrah’s precise lbw delivery. After the match, England expressed frustration with technology once again, showing their disorganized state of mind.

Ashwin ultimately only managed to add one more wicket to his tally, that of Tom Hartley for 16, towards the end of the game. This was made possible by his long-standing partner in crime, Jadeja, who expertly dismantled England’s middle order. This was the difficult task that the visiting team had anticipated before the series began; a tense and suffocating experience with a barrage of close catches and Jadeja’s deliveries proving to be more dangerous than those of his counterparts.

Yashasvi Jaiswal celebrates his double century for India on a brutal day for England in Rajkot.View image in fullscreen

The first wicket fell when Ollie Pope was caught by Sharma at slip after scoring three runs. Jonny Bairstow (four runs from three balls) and Joe Root (seven runs from 40 balls) were both dismissed lbw while attempting a sweep shot. Ben Stokes also fell to Kuldeep Yadav’s bowling, bringing the score to 50 for six in the 23rd over. Stokes was one of two victims for Yadav on the day, which began with him scoring 27 runs as the nightwatchman. His innings proved to be an annoyance for Shubman Gill, who was run out for 91 due to a miscommunication.

Aside from one hiccup, India performed flawlessly in the final two days of the match. Their reaction to Ashwin’s departure on the second evening, when England seemed to be gaining momentum through Duckett’s sweep-heavy century, was particularly impressive.

Many returned to the beginning, naturally, when Sharma’s impressive score of 131 and Jadeja’s hardworking 112 extinguished the initial struggles of three for 33. It was incredibly appropriate that Jadeja would be named player of the match on this emotional return to his home ground. Ben Foakes and Mark Wood were the last to fall victim to Jadeja’s talents, as he achieved the rare feat of scoring a century and taking five wickets in the same match for the second time in his remarkable career.

Ignore the newsletter advertisement

There is a limited amount of time until the fourth Test in Ranchi begins on Friday. Anderson and Wood, who have had little time to rest between innings and were then faced with Jaiswal’s bowling, will likely be the focus of discussion for Stokes and Brendon McCullum when it comes to team selection. However, there may also be talks about potentially altering the batting order.

Although Foakes may raise an eyebrow, loyalty has been a key factor in their strategy. However, it seems highly improbable that Bairstow, who has only faced seven balls in this match, will reach his 100th cap on this tour alongside his captain. He would need to make it to the fifth Test in Dharamshala to achieve that.

Sentiment should not come into it. More relevant is Bairstow’s career struggles in India; too often stuck on the crease, five of his six dis­missals for just 102 runs in this series either bowled or lbw. Dan Lawrence, the spare bat, is also an extra option with the ball. If the nets at lunch were anything to go by, Lawrence working on his whirlygig off-breaks, it may well be in their thoughts already.

Root has now sent down 107 overs on tour – 44 more than his previous highest odometer in a series – and England must surely lighten his load. The notion of a player simply being out of nick has disappeared from the discourse, replaced by the binary prism of Bazball, and yet Root ­waking up sore every morning and saddled with thoughts of two ­disciplines feels more pertinent.

As the evening session began, Root walked out to the middle with a sense of familiarity despite England being 18 for two. Among the various challenges England faced before this tour, such as Stokes not bowling and a new spin attack, they did not anticipate having to figure out how to bring back the batter who was known for turning around tough situations.

Source: theguardian.com