The ongoing Southampton Test between England and India continued to enthrall the fans on the third day.
Resuming their second innings on 6/0, England lost three wickets in the first session by adding 86 runs. While Bumrah and Shami removed Cook (36) and Jennings (12), Ishant got rid of Moeen Ali (9), who was promoted at the crucial no.3 position.
India started the post-lunch session brilliantly with Shami dismissing Bairstow for a duck on the very first delivery. After Bairstow’s departure, Stokes along with skipper Root stood tall against the visiting bowlers.
It was a direct hit from Shami from mid-on that provided India with the much-needed breakthrough as Joe Root walked back to the pavilion after scoring a gritty 48-run knock. Jos Buttler came in at number 7, stitching another crucial 30-run partnership for the sixth wicket as England went into the Tea break with 152/5, leading India by 125 runs.
In the final session, Stokes and Buttler added 26 runs and took the lead past 150 before Ashwin removed the former on 30. Stokes’ dismissal led to Sam Curran’s arrival at the crease and the in-form southpaw once again proved his mettle with the bat.
England took control of the match when Buttler and Curran forged a valuable 55-run partnership for the seventh wicket. In the process, the English wicketkeeper recorded his ninth fifty in Test cricket. Ishant trapped Buttler in front but not before the right-hander scored a well compiled 69.
Curran, on the other hand, continued to frustrate the visiting bowlers as he remained unbeaten on 35. Shami got rid of Adil Rashid (11) in the last over before the end of the day, with England eventually finishing the day on 260/8, leading India by 233 runs in the second innings.
As always the Twitterverse was buzzing with the experts sharing their opinion on a beautiful day of Test cricket.
Here are some of the top tweets from the third day’s play:
Day 4 pitch may not be as challenging to bat as we thought start of day 3. So there is hope for India.#ENGvIND— Sanjay Manjrekar (@sanjaymanjrekar) September 1, 2018
Sam Curran! And to think he was asked to sit out of a test match! #ENG— RK (@RK_sports) September 1, 2018
England have adapted well to the need here and are taking the game into dangerous territory for India. India haven't yet got as many wickets as they would have liked but have at least kept the run-rate under check— Harsha Bhogle (@bhogleharsha) September 1, 2018
While we have been hailing (quite rightly too) the Indian pace attack for consistently picking 20 wickets, we must also accept that they haven’t been able to wrap up the tail in this series as consistently. #EngvInd— Aakash Chopra (@cricketaakash) September 1, 2018
Test match very evenly balanced in Southampton - anything more than chasing 275 will be difficult for India. My thoughts on Ashwin - he’s fighting the expectations that were on him as the pitch is turning - hence he’s rushing his action along with bowling consistently to fast !— Shane Warne (@ShaneWarne) September 1, 2018
Splendid rearguard fightback by England— Cricketwallah (@cricketwallah) September 1, 2018