3rd Test: Yashasvi Jaiswal’s double ton, Ravindra Jadeja’s 5-wicket haul help India hammer England

February 18, 2024
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Yashasvi Jaiswal scored a phenomenal unbeaten double-century while Ravindra Jadeja followed up his first-innings century with a five-wicket haul

Rajkot, Feb 18 (IANS) Yashasvi Jaiswal scored a phenomenal unbeaten double-century while local lad Ravindra Jadeja followed up his first-innings century with a five-wicket haul in the fourth innings as India hammered England by 434 runs in the third Test at the Niranjan Shah Stadium here on Sunday.

Jaiswal, who retired hurt on 104 due to back cramps on Day Three, remained unbeaten on a career-best score of 214 off 236 balls. He hit 14 fours and 12 sixes and levelled with Wasim Akram for the world record for most sixes in a Test innings. Jaiswal is also the first Test player to hit 20 sixes in a series. With his smooth power game enthralling fans under bright sunshine, Jaiswal is now the leading run-getter in the ongoing series and also became the third-youngest player to smash two double-centuries in Tests, behind Vinod Kambli and Don Bradman.

On the other hand, Gill made a fine 91 while Sarfaraz piled on the misery for England’s inexperienced spin bowlers by making 68 – his second fifty on Test debut, becoming the fourth Indian batter to do so. Sarfaraz and Jaiswal, who come from the same school in Mumbai, produced plenty of fireworks in their entertaining 172-run partnership for the fifth wicket in just 26.2 overs as India declared on 430/4, showing that the future of Indian Test cricket batting is indeed very bright.

Given a mammoth 557 to chase, England crumbled under the pressure of runs and were skittled out for 122 in 39.4 overs, with Jadeja taking 5-41. The result gave India their biggest win by runs in Tests to go 2-1 up in the five-match series.

From 33/3 on the opening day, India have now gone to win at Rajkot with a day to spare. It is also England’s second-biggest defeat in Tests, with their implosion coming under bright sunshine, leaving them a lot to ponder ahead of the fourth Test at Ranchi starting on February 23. Resuming from 196/2 and the lead at 322 runs, nightwatchman Kuldeep danced down the pitch to hit Tom Hartley for a delightful six over mid-on, also his first maximum in international cricket. He then slapped a short ball from the left-arm spinner over extra cover for four.

Gill joined the boundary-hitting spree with a trademark short-arm jab and sumptuous drive, even as Kuldeep grew in confidence by drilling Hartley over the bowler’s head and bringing in a deft late cut off Wood to bring the fifty up of his stand with Gill. England’s frustration was summed up when they burnt a review on Kuldeep off Wood and failed to take one when the batter was trapped plumb LBW on the sweep. Luck deserted India when Kuldeep didn’t time the ball well to mid-on and set out for a non-existent single.

He took a couple of steps but sent Gill back, who was too late to get back into the crease and was run out by a direct hit from mid-on despite the batter making a full-length dive, ending his knock at 91, which was coincidentally the same score he made in the 2021 Gabba Test chase. Shortly later, Kuldeep fell when his drive sent an outside edge to slip off Rehan Ahmed. From there on, Jaiswal and Sarfaraz, the Mumbai lads, took a six each off Root over long-on fence, while entertaining the fans with sweeps, flicks, slog-sweeps and lofts till lunch came.

Post lunch, Jaiswal took a single to get his 150 and then scooped James Anderson over fine leg for a boundary. If this wasn’t enough, Jaiswal treated Anderson with absolute disdain -– smashing sixes over fine leg, cover, and straight down the ground to take 21 runs off the over. Sarfaraz continued to get boundaries by picking the leg-side gaps with ease, and eventually got back-to-back fifties on debut. Jaiswal’s carnage had no stopping as he reached his 200, leaping in joy, kissing the helmet and raising his hands to soak in the applause from the crowd.

He celebrated the landmark in style by slicing and slog-sweeping Root for back-to-back sixes. Sarfaraz then crunched Rehan for two leg-side sixes and a four lofted over extra cover, before Rohit Sharma declared the innings, leaving England with a mountain to climb. Chasing 557, England were off to a watchful start, in complete opposite of their aggressive nature. Zak Crawley took two boundaries but was involved in a horrible mix-up as Ben Duckett went in pursuit of a single after pushing the ball to mid-wicket.

Crawley sent Duckett back, but it was too late as Mohammed Siraj fired in a throw and wicket-keeper Dhurv Jurel rushed towards the stumps and collected the ball in motion to break the stumps quickly. At the stroke of tea, Crawley was trapped lbw by Jasprit Bumrah by a sharp nip-backer, which England couldn’t overturn on review.

Post tea, England fell like nine pins. Ollie Pope tried a cut shot off Jadeja but was caught at first slip. Jonny Bairstow tried a sweep off Jadeja but was trapped plumb lbw. Root battled for 40 balls before missing Jadeja on the sweep and was trapped lbw.

Capitan Ben Stokes was beaten on the sweep against Kuldeep and became the third batter in the innings to be trapped LBW. Rehan Ahmed went for a big shot down the ground off Kuldeep but found long-on. Ben Foakes and Hartley put some resistance with a 32-run standoff 67 balls for the eighth wicket, but the former gave a thick edge on a cut to an impressive Jurel behind the stumps.

Ravichandran Ashwin, who left the match mid-way due to a family medical emergency, came back to take Hartley’s inside edge to the stumps and Jadeja ended the match by ending Wood’s cameo of 33 off 15 balls when the batter holed out to long-off to complete a dominating win for India.

Brief scores:

India 445 & 430/4 dec in 98 overs (Yashasvi Jaiswal 214 not out, Shubman Gill 91, Sarfaraz Khan 68 not out; Tom Hartley 1-78, Rehan Ahmed 1-108) beat England 319 & 122 all out in 39.4 overs (Mark Wood 33; Ravindra Jadeja 5-41) by 434 runs

–IANS/nr/bsk/

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