Advantage England after taking 163-run lead over India

India vs England 2016 1st Test Day 4 Report | Analysis

India England Cricket

Brief Scores : England 114/0 (Hameed 62*, Cook 46*) & 537 lead India 488 (Vijay 126, Pujara 124, Ashwin 70; Rashid 4/114) by 163 runs.

NEW DELHI: If it was not for Ravichandran Ashwin’s valiant 139-ball 70-run knock, England would have had a lead of over 100 runs and a definite advantage in the first India v England Test at Rajkot with one more day to go. England did eventually take a lead of 49, bowling out India for 488 and went on to score 114 without any loss in their second innings, extending the overall lead over India to 163.

They thus ensured that a draw will be the most likely outcome of this opening Test if there is no collapse of epic proportions. Looking at the Rajkot track, such a collapse also looks bleak especially after England openers, Alastair Cook (46*) and Haseeb Hameed (62*), showed intent in their second essay to score at a brisk pace, taking the game away from India.

Also Read :- Detailed Scoreboard & Highlights Of Day 4

Indian spinners did produce some anxious moments that saw Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja finding the extra bounce and sharp turn but the England duo managed to negotiate that tough period. Once they got their eye in, runs came at will. Debutant Hameed showed why he was called up to the England setup this early in his career. He was calm, composed and showed fantastic skills against the spinners. He was silken through offside and managed to rotate the strike well and went on to become the third youngest half-centurion for England in Tests. Cook, at the other end, was perseverance personified.

India had started day four after conceding their slight advantage late on day three. Virat Kohli and Ajinkya Rahane had negotiated Stuart Broad and Chris Woakes, who banged the ball in short to unsettle the Indian duo, well early in the day. But against the spinners, sharp turn and bounce had them in trouble. Rahane misjudged a shortish delivery from left-arm spinner Zafar Ansari and went back trying to play it across, the ball spun the other way and clipped the top of the bails. Rahane departed for 13.
Two overs later, Kohli was cramped for room by the extra bounce Rashid managed to extract. He went back to play the short delivery and clipped the stumps with his foot to be adjudged out hit-wicket. Kohli’s departure for 40 with India at 361 for six and trailing England by 176 runs meant that India were not in a position to dictate the proceedings.

Ashwin and Wriddhiman Saha then combined well for a 64-run stand as they blunted the England attack and helped India inch closer to England’s first innings total. This partnership ensured England lost the initiative to force a result. Ashwin was resolute in defence and rotated the strike well with Saha. But after the lunch break, Saha departed for 35 – chasing a wide delivery from Moeen Ali and edging it to wicketkeeper Jonny Bairstow.

In walked the second local boy, Ravindra Jadeja, and he looked to up the ante but perished after scoring 12 runs to legspinner Adil Rashid. This was a big wicket as India were pushed on to the backfoot with only two wickets left and England’s lead at 88 runs. Rashid added the scalp of Umesh Yadav two overs later, but in company of Mohammed Shami, Ashwin managed to get to his fifty – his seventh in Test cricket – as the duo compiled a handy 29 runs for the final wicket, Ashwin was holed out in the deep off the bowling of Moeen Ali. Rashid was the best bowler for England and finished with figures of 31-1-114-4.


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