ENG v IND, 5th Test: India bowl out England for 284, extend lead to 169 despite losing Gill
Birmingham, July 3 (IANS): India strengthened their stronghold on rescheduled fifth Test against England at Edgbaston, taking a sizeable lead of 132 runs and extending it to 169 at tea.
After Mohammed Siraj picked four wickets while Jasprit Bumrah scalped three wickets to bowl out England for 284 in 61.3 overs, with Jonny Bairstow making a belligerent 106, India lost Shubman Gill cheaply. But Cheteshwar Pujara (17 not out) and Hanuma Vihari (10 not out) stitched a stand of 33 runs to take India to 37/1 in 13 overs.
James Anderson struck early, squaring Gill up with a ball angling in from a good length and moved away late, with the extra bounce taking the shoulder edge to second slip. Stuart Broad and later Matthew Poots were getting to move balls back into Pujara quite sharply while Anderson had some nipping away and brushed Vihari’s thigh pad too.
But Pujara was leaving a lot of balls in the outside off-stump corridor while Vihari showed considerable restraint. Whenever England bowled rare bad balls, Pujara carved boundaries twice through off-side while Vihari flayed a short ball from Anderson through backward point for four to maintain India’s commanding position in the match.
Earlier, Bairstow shared stands of 66 with Ben Stokes (25) and 92 with Sam Billings (36) en route to his third Test century in as many matches. But it wasn’t enough to avoid conceding a handy lead to India. He continued from where he left off in lunch, clipping Shardul Thakur in the gap between deep mid-wicket and deep mid-on for a boundary.
From the other end, Billings struck Bumrah for boundaries through fine-leg and third-man to keep England’s run-flow continuing. Bairstow reached his century with a crunchy back-foot punch off Thakur square through the off-side, with Ravindra Jadeja slipping on the boundary and allowing the ball to cross the rope for a boundary. With Thakur struggling to nail his line and length, both Bairstow and Billings were able to rotate the strike to keep the scoreboard moving, with the former surviving an lbw appeal off Bumrah via DRS.
Bumrah and Jadeja combined to concede only six in four overs of sustained pressure. The beneficiary of that tightness was Mohammed Shami, who delivered the breakthrough for India with the first ball of his spell to end Bairstow’s knock at 106.
On a full and outside the off-stump ball from Shami, Bairstow couldn’t resist driving hard away from his body and gave a healthy edge to Kohli at first slip, who directed a flying kiss immediately towards Barmy Army fans.
India then peppered Broad with short-pitched stuff and in an attempt to break free, he skied one high in the air off Siraj, giving a simple catch to wicketkeeper Rishabh Pant. Siraj got his third scalp when Billings played-on while trying to guide the ball through the third man, departing for 36.
He then ended England’s innings when Potts nicked to second slip for a low catch, with replays taking a long time to decide whether the ball had hit the ground or Shreyas Iyer’s finger was on the ground before the catch.
Brief scores: India 416 and 37/1 in 13 overs (Cheteshwar Pujara 17 not out; James Anderson 1-15) lead England 284 in 61.3 overs (Jonny Bairstow 106, Sam Billings 36; Mohammed Siraj 4-66, Jasprit Bumrah 3-68) by 169 runs