India on Monday defeated England by 157 runs in the Oval Test, taking 2-1 lead in the ongoing series. The Indian victory assumed significance given that the tourists were bowled out for just 191 runs in the first innings.
Indian bowlers bowled brilliantly, causing a spectacular batting collapse for England, who started day 5 at 77-0. Haseeb Hameed was out after scoring 63, while Rory Burns failed to capitalise on his fifty. England skipper, known as Mr. Dependable, too could not stop his side from losing the match. Root was out for just 36.
Umesh Yadav ended his spell with three wickets while Jasprit Bumrah, Shardul Thakur and Ravindra Jadeja picked up two wickets each.
Reacting to his side’s defeat, Jope Root said, “Frustrating not to get something from the game today, we felt we had an opportunity to win, but credit to India, they got the ball to reverse and that was the turning point. Could have made more of a first-innings lead, and you have to make chances count against world-class players. Got to find ways to get better but be realistic and realise that was world-class bowling. It might reverse at Old TraffordT, we’ll have to manage it better. Whenever you lose the game you can look at the toss, but we’ve got to be more ruthless, and make that a 200-run lead. Got to be clinical, not be comfy, make big partnerships. We have played good cricket and important to remember that. Woody is coming good, injuries have been frustrating, but those guys that have had the opportunity have been excellent.”
Kohli, for his part, said, ” “The character that the side has shown, to come back from 100 run deficit showed that we were not down and out. I said at Lord’s as well, I am proud of the character, among the top three bowling performances I have witnessed as India captain. It’s relative what you call flat, field wasn’t wet like the first three days, ball got scuffed up nicely, one side heavier, and exploited reverse swing perfectly. We believed as a team that we could get all ten wickets. 27 runs off 22 overs on this kind of pitch, a huge effort. When it started reversing, Bumrah just said give me the ball.” Rohit’s innings was outstanding, but the impact performance from the lower-middle order, Shardul’s fifty was the difference, and a counterattack in the second innings. Looking to restrict us but he was outstanding. We never got towards statistics, we know what we focus on, we take a call on what feels best and we believe we can win Tests with it. Whatever the noise on the outset, it doesn’t bother us. Unfortunate Shastri and the coaching aren’t here but they just called us. it’s a real momentum boost. We are looking forward to opportunities to step on the field for India. And the fans have been outstanding too.”
Rohit Sharma was declared Man Of The Match for his impressive century.