India clinch a thrilling 157-run win over England
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INDIA - SPORT'S - September 7, 2021

Fourth Test: India clinch a thrilling 157-run win over England

England suffered a dramatic collapse to crash to 157-run defeat in the fourth Test against India at The Oval in London. Needing 368 to win in the second innings, England looked to be on course for a draw, if not an unlikely win, at 100/0.

But the Virat Kohli-led side once again spectacularly rose to the occasion, prising out all the 10 wickets thereafter, to bowl out the hosts for 210 to take an unassailable lead of 2-1 in the five-match series.

Umesh Yadav (3/60) was the top wicket-taker, but Jasprit Bumrah (2/27) and Ravindra Jadeja (2/50) swung the match decisively in India’s favour. Shardul Thakur, chipped in with two wickets, including the all-important wicket of skipper Joe Root.

The slide started in the post-lunch session where Jadeja hit the rough created outside the left-hander’s off-stump as skipper Kohli had assessed at the toss.

Jadeja made Haseeb Hameed (63) pay for his ultra-defensive tactic with a classic left-arm spinner’s dismissal.

Using the rough outside the leg-stump of the right hander, he landed one on the spot as the opener prodded forward for a defensive stroke but the ball turned enough to evade the bat and hit the top of the off-stump.

Then it was Bumrah’s turn to unleash his sharp incoming reverse swinging deliveries with a lethal mix of yorkers for Ollie Pope (2) and Jonny Bairstow (0), who couldn’t stop their defence from being breached.

Pope got one that came in sharply at a brisk pace which also ensured the quickest 100th Test wicket for India’s most prolific all-format fast bowler in the last decade. But the ball that got Bairstow was even special as it would have made someone like Waqar Younis proud.

It moved in the air and dipped at the right time to york Bairstow and leave England in tatters.

n that same over, Bumrah bowled another menacing yorker that Root just about managed to dig out.

If that was not enough, Moeen Ali became a “walking wicket” as he trapped himself in the set plan, with Jadeja again landing on the rough outside the left-hander’s off-stump.

The extra bounce meant that it hit the shoulder of the blade and Suryakumar Yadav, substituting for Cheteshwar Pujara at short leg, took an easy catch.

Bumrah and Jadeja hit England with such ferocity that a batsman of Joe Root’s (36) stature looked dumbfounded at the other end with the kind of distress that his fellow batters were in.

Perhaps that was the reason that India’s man-of-the-moment Shardul Thakur’s (2/22) off-cutter was dragged back onto the stumps by Root, signalling the end of English resistance.

From 141 for two, it was 147 for six in the space of six overs. England in that hour after lunch lost four wickets for 19 runs in 14 overs.

India certainly got in driver’s seat by lunch with those first two wickets and Hameed’s approach didn’t help England’s cause either.

Thakur, who was disappointing in the first innings provided the breakthrough in the 41st over after a partnership of 100 runs, the first against India in the fourth innings in 58 years.

Thakur bowled one fuller and it moved a shade away taking the outside edge of the Rory Burns’s bat as he squared up.

Dawid Malan (5) was looking solid in defence till Hameed misjudged a single, tapping a Jadeja delivery to short cover where substitute fielder Mayank Agarwal picked and threw in one action that found Malan short of his ground much to the joy of visitors.

Yadav then burst through the tail, with wickets of Chris Woakes (18), Craig Overton (10) and James Anderson (2), to complete a famous win.

The final Test begins on September 10 in Manchester.

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