Hyderabad, Jan 27 (PTI) England showed semblance of fight to score briskly on a fast-wearing uneven pitch to reach 89 for one at lunch against India on the third day of the first Test here on Saturday.
Ben Duckett (38 batting) and Ollie Pope (16 batting) are at crease as the visitors were left to wipe out a massive deficit of 190 runs in their second innings. England still trail by 101 runs.
India were bowled out for 436 in their first essay. Ravindra Jadeja (87) and Axar Patel (44) failed to touch their respective individual milestones as the hosts could only add 15 runs to their overnight 421 for seven.
Despite the hefty task at hand, England openers Ben Duckett and Zak Crawley (31) did not panic and went ahead with their duty with determination, continuing the strategy of employing sweep and reverse sweeps to counter Indian spinners.
Crawley even smashed Axar for a six over sightscreen to bring some cheer to the England camp. In this period, the left-arm spinner conceded more than seven runs an over, while Ashwin went for over five.
But India did not have to wait long for the first breakthrough.
Bowling around the wicket, Ashwin created an angle across Crawley and the right-hander’s defensive prod ended up in a simple catch to Rohit Sharma at first slip.
Earlier, India’s first innings did not last too long once the play resumed in the morning, coming to a close in 54 minutes.
Jadeja could not bring up a much-anticipated fourth Test hundred, falling leg before to Joe Root.
Jadeja went to front foot to defend a length delivery on off-stump, and the ball took a good amount of turn to hit his pads. Umpire Chris Gaffaney raised his finger as Jadeja opted to review the call.
There seemed to be a deflection of the bat but the replays remained inconclusive and the third umpire went with the on-field umpire’s decision.
In the very next ball, Root castled Jasprit Bumrah and Rehan Ahmed cleaned up Axar as Indian innings came to a quick end as they lost the last three wickets without adding any run. PTI UNG BS BS