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Rediff.com  » Cricket » PHOTOS: Spinners take India to brink of victory in Ranchi

PHOTOS: Spinners take India to brink of victory in Ranchi

February 25, 2024 18:02 IST
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India's Kuldeep Yadav celebrates after taking the lbw wicket of England's Ollie Robinson on Day 3 of the 4th Test at the JSCA International Stadium Complex, Ranchi, on Sunday

IMAGE: India's Kuldeep Yadav celebrates after taking the lbw wicket of England's Ollie Robinson on Day 3 of the 4th Test at the JSCA International Stadium Complex, Ranchi, on Sunday. Photograph: Amit Dave/Reuters

Spin twins Ravichandran Ashwin and Kuldeep Yadav combined to rout England in their second innings and put India on course for a series-clinching victory in the fourth Test on Sunday.

  • SCORECARD
 

Off-spinner Ashwin (5-51) and left-arm wristspinner Kuldeep (4-22) shared nine wickets on a turning track to bundle out England for 145 inside two sessions.

India's Rohit Sharma and Yashasvi Jaiswal put on an unbeaten 40 runs before stumps on Day 3 

IMAGE: India's Rohit Sharma and Yashasvi Jaiswal put on an unbeaten 40 runs before stumps on Day 3. Photograph: Amit Dave/Reuters

Chasing 192 for a victory that would fetch them an unassailable 3-1 lead in the five-match series, India cruised to 40 for no loss at stumps on day three.

Skipper Rohit Sharma (24) and Yashasvi Jaiswal (16) have looked unperturbed on a pitch, where the ball spun sharply and stayed low occasionally.

India's Dhruv Jurel batted stoically before being dismissed for 90

IMAGE: India's Dhruv Jurel batted stoically before being dismissed for 90. Photograph: Amit Dave/Reuters

Earlier, when action resumed on Sunday, Dhruv Jurel (90) led a spirited rearguard action to rescue India, who posted 307 all out in reply to England's first innings 353.

Jurel combined in a 76-run partnership with Kuldeep (28), whose 131-ball vigil was the longest in his test career.

Jurel smashed four sixes and six fours in his knock but fell short of a hundred when Tom Hartley (3-68) bowled him.

England's Shoaib Bashir celebrates with Ollie Pope and Ben Foakes after taking out India's Akash Deep LBW

IMAGE: England's Shoaib Bashir celebrates with Ollie Pope and Ben Foakes after taking out India's Akash Deep LBW. Photograph: Amit Dave/Reuters

Off-spinner Shoaib Bashir (5-119) claimed his first five-wicket haul in Test cricket.

Day three started with Kuldeep and Dhruv Jurel playing calmly and slowly putting runs on the scoreboard at a time when the hosts were under pressure.

Jurel and Kuldeep helped India to cross the 250-run mark in the 86th over. However, James Anderson made the first breakthrough of the day after he dismissed Kuldeep for 28 runs for 131 balls in the 89th.

India moved past the 300 runs mark in the 101st over before Shoaib Bashir removed Akash Deep for 9 runs to bag his first five-wicket haul in first-class cricket.

India's Ravichandran Ashwin celebrates after having England's Ollie Pope out LBW

IMAGE: India's Ravichandran Ashwin celebrates after having England's Ollie Pope out LBW. Photograph: Amit Dave/Reuters

A lead of 46 was much lower than England probably had expected having reduced India to 177-7 before the hosts roared right back into the contest after Ashwin's triple strikes.

The off-spinner had Ben Duckett caught short leg for 15 and trapped Ollie Pope lbw with his next delivery. Pope fell for his second duck in the match.

India's Ravichandran Ashwin celebrates with teammates after taking a return catch to dismiss England's Ben Foakes

IMAGE: India's Ravichandran Ashwin celebrates with teammates after taking a return catch to dismiss England's Ben Foakes. Photograph: Amit Dave/Reuters

While Ashwin could not complete a hat-trick, he got the important wicket of Joe Root (11) lbw.

Root, who made a classy century in the first innings, was initially adjudged not out, but Ashwin coaxed his captain Rohit Sharma into challenging the decision.

The hosts were rewarded when replays confirmed the ball would have gone on to hit the stump.

England's Ben Stokes is bowled out by India's Kuldeep Yadav

IMAGE: England's Ben Stokes is bowled out by India's Kuldeep Yadav. Photograph: Amit Dave/Reuters

Opener Zak Crawley smashed seven fours in his 60 before losing his middle stump to Kuldeep.

The spinner struck another telling blow when he had Ben Stokes bowled for four before the tea break.

The England captain missed the ball, which hit his pad before spinning back between his legs and went on to hit the stumps.

Jonny Bairstow (30) fell in the first ball after the tea break and Kuldeep dismissed Hartley and Ollie Robinson in the same over to pin England on the mat.

India's Kuldeep Yadav celebrates with Rohit Sharma after taking the wicket of England's Tom Hartley, caught out by Sarfaraz Khan 

IMAGE: India's Kuldeep Yadav celebrates with Rohit Sharma after taking the wicket of England's Tom Hartley, caught out by Sarfaraz Khan. Photograph: Amit Dave/Reuters

Ashwin went on to dismiss Ben Foakes and Anderson in the same over as England lost their last six wickets for 25 runs in a remarkable meltdown.

"I've enjoyed bowling with the new ball and today was one of those days where Rohit asked in the huddle who wants to start and I put my hand up," said Ashwin, who opened the attack for India, while also heaping praise on Kuldeep.

"We all know how many revs he can put on the ball and what skills he's got, but when you can change up the pace and the trajectory, he's double the bowler he is."

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