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India : in what panned out to be a fascinating day of Test cricket, an all-round effort from the Indian cricket team helped them pull off a historic comeback win over England on the fifth and final day of Ind vs Eng 4th Test at The Oval on Monday. India bowled out England for 210 inside three sessions to win the Oval Test by 157 runs and go 2-1 up in the five-match Test series.
Brilliant display of batting from Rohit and KL Rahul in India’s 2nd innings helped India set a massive target of 368. The Indian bowlers, especially in batting-friendly conditions, bowled their hearts out to produce a remarkable performance. England kept on losing wickets in regular intervals and could never make a comeback after losing both its openers. Ravindra Jadeja (2/50), Umesh Yadav (3/60), Shardul Thakur (2/22) and Jasprit Bumrah (2/27) played the starring roles.
In the history of Test cricket at The Oval, no team has ever succeeded in chasing a 300-plus target in the fourth innings.The highest score that has been chased down at The Oval in Test cricket is 263.
For the last 44 years, India has not lost a single Test match after taking a lead of more than 300, they have won all 34 games so far and today they registered their 35th win. In 1977-78, Australia had defeated India by chasing down 342 runs.
Earlier on day 4, India were bowled out for 466 in their 2nd innings, setting England a target of 368 on Sunday. At Stumps on Day 4, England were 77/0 and needed 291 runs to win.
Chasing such a stiff target, England openers batted well against the new ball and got off to a great start, helping England cross the 100-run mark in the first 30 minutes of the final day. However, all-rounder Shardul Thakur broke the solid stand in his first over of the day, dismissing Rory Burns with a peach of a delivery.
Just a few overs later, hesitation and confusion between Hameed and Burns resulted in a disaster for the hosts as a fiery throw from Mayank Agarwal to keeper Rishabh Pant resulted in Dawid Malan getting out for just 5 runs.
At Lunch, Indian were on top after taking two prized wickets for just 54 runs and England under immense pressure with Hameed and skipper Root at the crease to steady their team’s sinking ship. From here on, it was crucial for the hosts to not lose any more wickets and avoid exposing their inexperienced middle-order so early on, with a few sessions left in the game.
Following wickets of Malan and Burns in the opening session, the Indian bowlers kept the hosts under pressure.
In just a few minutes into the post-Lunch session, India made a complete mockery of England batsmen. A ripper from Jadeja, pitched on the rough took a sharp turn to peg back Hameed’s off-stumps. Speedster Jasprit Bumrah’s masterclass dented England massively and the game took a huge turn towards Virat Kohli & Co. Bumrah messed up Ollie Pope’s stumps to get his historic 100th Test wicket.
In Bumrah’s next over, Bairstow was left stunned when a well-directed in-swinging peach dislodged his stumps. With this, half of the England side was back into the pavilion and just few minutes later Jadeja pushed India even more closer, just touching distance of reclaiming the series by taking the wicket of in-form Moeen Ali to leave the hosts reeling.
All-rounder Shardul Thakur has a knack of taking wickets during crucial moments in the game and he yet again delivered by taking the prized wicket of skipper Joe Root. England tail-enders were soon dismissed by India as they wrapped up the Oval Test to go 2-1 up in the series.
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