ENG vs IND, 5th Test: India extend lead to 361 against England

Pant motored along, nailing a controlled short-arm jab through deep mid-wicket off Anderson while Shreyas Iyer, despite being troubled by short balls, produced beautiful cover drives twice off Matthew Potts.
Rishabh Pant
Rishabh Pant

BIRMINGHAM: India on Monday managed to extend their lead to 316 against England on Day Four of the rescheduled fifth Test despite losing four wickets, including Cheteshwar Pujara (66) and Rishabh Pant (57) in the first session.

At lunch, India were 229/7 in 73 overs, with Ravindra Jadeja (17 not out) and Mohammed Shami (13 not out) at the crease. For England, they are now staring at their highest chase of this year in Test cricket, with the pitch starting to show signs of variable bounce.

England began the day with James Anderson and Joe Root from both ends. Anderson wasn't able to trouble much as Pujara hit him for successive boundaries -- a crunchy punch through cover was followed by a slick whip through mid-wicket.

From the other end, Root was unable to bother Pujara as well as Rishabh Pant, with the latter taking a boundary through point. Stuart Broad struck in his first over, with a short and wide outside off stump ball which Pujara cut straight to backward point, falling for a well-made 66.

Pant motored along, nailing a controlled short-arm jab through deep mid-wicket off Anderson while Shreyas Iyer, despite being troubled by short balls, produced beautiful cover drives twice off Matthew Potts.

Pant reached his fifty off Broad with a delicate flick through the fine-leg, becoming just the second Indian wicketkeeper after Farokh Engineer to get a century and fifty in the same Test. The first hour ended with Iyer falling to the short ball yet again, pulling straight to mid-wicket off Potts, giving Anderson his 100th catch in Test cricket.

Pant welcomed Jack Leach with a reverse sweep behind the fine-leg for a boundary despite falling on the ground. With the left-arm spinner getting some turn in from the rough, Pant tried to unsettle his line and length with another reverse sweep, but could only glove behind to first slip, falling for 57. He finished the match with 203 runs across both innings.

Potts then rattled Shardul Thakur with the short-ball ploy and variable bounce happening from the pitch, even striking him on the side of the helmet once. In his next over, Thakur tried to take on the short ball with a pull but the top-edge flew to a deep fine leg. Jadeja had a reprieve when Anderson dropped his catch at the cover while Shami struck a brace of boundaries to keep India on top.

Brief scores: India 416 and 229/7 in 73 overs (Cheteshwar Pujara 66, Rishabh Pant 57; Matthew Potts 2-50, Stuart Broad 2-58) lead England 284 by 361 runs.

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