We let the game slip away after dominating, says Bumrah

Bumrah lauded Rishabh Pant and Ravindra Jadeja for their tons in India’s first innings.
England captain Ben Stokes and India’s Jasprit Bumrah pose with the trophy.
England captain Ben Stokes and India’s Jasprit Bumrah pose with the trophy.

BIRMINGHAM: India stand-in captain Jasprit Bumrah on Tuesday blamed his side’s defeat to England in the rescheduled fifth Test on the batting failure in the second innings, saying it let the match slip away from its hands after dominating major part of it.

England overhauled the 378-run target in the morning session of the fifth and final day with Root and Bairstow remaining unbeaten on 142 and 114 respectively.

“That’s the beauty of Test cricket, even if you have three good days. We fell short with the bat on Monday and that is where we let the opposition in to let the match slip away from us,” Bumrah said at the post-match presentation ceremony.

“Ifs and buts can always be there. If you go back, if there was no rain in the first match, we could have won the series. But England played really well.”

England’s win meant that the five-match Test series, which spilled over to this year due to COVID-19 cases in the Indian camp last year, ended in 2-2 draw.

“We have drawn the series and both teams played very good cricket and it was a fair result,” Bumrah said.

Bumrah lauded Rishabh Pant and Ravindra Jadeja for their tons in India’s first innings.

“Pant takes his chances. He and Jaddu got us back into the game with their batting. We were ahead in the game. He takes his chances, backs himself and very happy for him,” he said.

Captain Stokes praises team effort

England skipper Ben Stokes said his team was trying to rewrite the way Test cricket is being played in the country with its new-found brand of the game.

“When the lads play like this, it makes my job easier. When you have clarity like we have in the dressing room, it makes chasing totals like this easier. 378 would have been scary five weeks ago, but now it’s all good.

“We want to give some new life to Test cricket. Inspiring the next generation is what we want to do. We want to bring in new fans and want to leave a mark on Test cricket,” he added.

Stokes was all praise of his batters for pulling off the historic run chase for England.

“Jonny and Root will get all the credit, but the precedent was set up by the way the openers played against Bumrah and Shami with the new ball.”

Man-of-the-match Jonny Bairstow, who smashed centuries in both the innings, said he was never afraid of failure and just wanted to put the pressure back on the opposition.

“It is great fun at the moment. I am stripping it back to the basics. The last few years have been tough on me but the last few months have been fantastic.

“Day five was over in 90 minutes. I just have an enjoyment factor now. I am not afraid of failing and just want to put the pressure on the opposition. We are going to lose games with the approach we have, but it is a positive fun brand of cricket to play,” he said.

England’s man-of-the-series Joe Root said they were always confident of chasing down the target set by India.

“The environment has been great and the guys are having fun in the last four weeks. There is absolute clarity that we were chasing it down and there was total belief,” he said.

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