India crush England, attain WTC ultimate


Ahmedabad, March 6

Axar Patel and Ravichandran Ashwin ran through a clueless English batting line-up as India won the fourth Test, and the series 3-1, to reach the World Test Championship final. The innings and 25-run win was recorded when England were bowled out for 135 in the third session of Day 3.

All India needed was a draw to book a Lord’s date in June with New Zealand in the WTC final, but after the team took a 160-run lead, courtesy late resistance by the tail, India’s win was never in doubt.

Patel picked up 5/48 and Ashwin ended up with 5/47 to blow England away in only 54.5 overs.

Poor application

Bad application and a poor mindset while tackling the spinners cost the Englishmen dearly in three consecutive defeats. The Englishmen were so rattled by two defeats that they seemed to imagine demons on the wicket for the fourth Test. There wasn’t much turn on offer — but just enough to ensure that the visitors wilted under pressure. Patel’s series tally stood at 27, while Ashwin ended up with 32 scalps. A lot of credit for this victory should go to Rishabh Pant, who played the enforcer on Day 2 with a magnificent hundred, and Washington Sundar, who made an impressive 96 not out. These two knocks put England out of the game.

Collapse

England’s collapse on Day 3 was similar to their earlier collapses in the series. Openers Zak Crawley (5) and Dom Sibley (3) and No. 3 Jonny Bairstow (0 off 1 ball) seemed like sitting ducks. England’s best players Joe Root (30) and Ben Stokes (2) did not last long. — TNS, agencies

Brief scores: England 205 and 135 (Root 30; Ashwin 5/47, Patel 5/48); India 365 (Pant 101, Sundar 96*, Rohit 49, Patel 43; Stokes 4/89, Anderson 3/44)



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