India ride on dominant bowling display to level Test series 1-1 at Vizag
On the back of a strong bowling display, India bowled out England for 292 in their chase of a 399-run target to secure a 107-run victory, and in the process level the series 1-1. Despite isolated acts of resistance, England couldn’t really come together as a unit that would be able to keep the Indian bowlers at bay for more than a couple of sessions as they fell short of the finish line by an emphatic margin.
Starting the day at 67/1, England were hit with their first blow when nightwatchman Rehan Ahmed was caught in front of the stumps by a skidder from Axar Patel. Ollie Pope, the hero of the first Test, was undone by Ashwin’s extra bounce after a brief show of resilience as he departed for 23.
England’s most experienced campaigner, Joe Root wanted to change his batting style in order to accommodate their new belligerent showdown but soon found himself ruing the decision 10 balls in as he hoicked one to Axar at backward point, falling for 16.
The procession of woes continued for the visitors as a set Zak Crawley was the next to depart to Kuldeep Yadav’s extraordinary ball that pitched in the line of the leg-stump, straightened up and crashed onto the opener’s pads, sending him back for a well-fought 73.
In no time whatsoever, Bumrah bagged the prized scalp of Jonny Bairstow, entering the wickets column for the first time in the second innings, as he removed the Englishman for 26. Ben Stokes was soon found short of the crease when an electric effort from Shreyas Iyer saw the latter fire a throw at the stumps as the England captain was run out, much to the jubilation of the entire Indian team.
Despite a late charge from Ben Foakes, who knitted a strong partnership with Tom Hartley for the eighth wicket, Bumrah’s return into bowling left England with much to be desired for. A slower one from Bumrah was hit straight back to the star pacer as Foakes departed for 36 while Mukesh Kumar dealt an immediate blow to get the better of Shoaib Bashir for a duck.
In what you may call poetic justice, it was Jasprit Bumrah who wrapped things up for Team India with an exotic reverse outswinger that pitched in the good length area and nipped back in to kiss Hartley’s pads first and then cannoned into the stumps, ending a 36-run knock from the left-hander. India snatched a 107-run win to equalize the series and Bumrah was awarded the Player of the Match for his figures of 9/91.