Day 4: English bowlers keep India on leash

Image credits: Twitter England Cricket

Mark Wood and Moeen Ali struck vital blows late on against India on Sunday to give England a slight edge on Day 4 of the second Test.

India were 181-6 in their second innings, a lead of 154 runs, when bad light forced an early close.

Wood on fire

Play resumed Sunday with England 27 runs ahead after Root’s superb 180 not in a total of 391.

Mark Wood, recalled after Stuart Broad suffered a series-ending calf injury, was the bowling star of the day.

He rocked the Indian batting line-up and had figures of 3-40 in 14 overs.

Wood’s first wicket was that of KL Rahul who fell for five when he edged a 93 mph (150 kph) delivery to wicketkeeper Jos Buttler.

Rohit helped India neutralise the 27 runs lead when he pulled a 91 mph Wood ball for six.

However, Rohit tried to repeat the shot just three balls later, even though three fielders were out for the hook.

As a result, he he was caught by Moeen, running in from deep square leg, for 21.

India were now effectively 0 for 2.

India was in even greater trouble at 55-3 when Sam Curran captured the key wicket of Indian captain Virat Kohli.

Earlier, Kohli survived left-arm swing bowler Curran’s review for lbw on height.

When he had made 20, Kohli played for an in-swinger off a Curran delivery angled across him and was caught behind off a thin edge.

Pujara Rahane rescue act

Just when England’s tails were up, Cheteshwar Pujara and Ajinkya Rahane fought back with a big partnership.

Pujara (45) and Rahane (61) blunted England’s attack for 59 overs and put on 100 runs for the fourth wicket.

Pujara consumed 206 balls for his 45.

However his innings ended when a Wood delivery bounced unevenly off a good length ball and took the edge of the bat, landing gently in the hands of Joe Root at second slip.

At this time, India was 155-4.

Worse was to come as two more wickets fell for just 20 runs.

Off-spinner Moeen Ali got into the act and removed vice-captain Rahane and the dangerous Ravindra Jadeja cheaply.

Rahane was caught behind trying to cut Moeen.

Moeen then produced an unplayable delivery – which turned and bounced to clip the top of the Jadeja’s off stump.

Mooen, in for dropped batsman Dan Lawrence, had figures of 2-52 in 20 overs.

Shortly before play ended, the umpires appeared to suggest the game could not proceed if England took the new ball, even though the floodlights were on.

England, however, did not want to risk conceding runs in those circumstances, with Rishabh Pant 14 not out and Ishant Sharma unbeaten on four.

England will be hoping to wrap up the Indian innings quickly on Day 5 and go for victory.

With Jimmy Anderson in the attack and a new ball on offer, England will be relishing their chances.

India 181 for 6 (Rahane 61, Pujara 45, Wood 3-40, Ali 2-52) and 364 lead England 391 by 154 runs


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