After the last day performance at Lord’s three weeks ago, the Indian bowling attack blew the English batting for the second time in the series, or in London, rather to establish an unassailable 2-1 lead. While the day started with all three results possible, India put their foot on England’s throat courtesy of a relentless spell of reverse-swing from Jasprit Bumrah post-lunch. He was supported by Ravindra Jadeja who laid the foundation with a two-wicket haul and constantly landing the ball in the rough throughout the morning session which scuffed up the ball for Bumrah to execute his art. As a result, England were shot down to a 157-run defeat.
Apart from the aforementioned names, Umesh Yadav snapped three wickets while Shardul Thakur picked two crucial scalps, including the prized wicket of the hosts’ skipper, Joe Root.
India, however, did not have the best of the starts with the ball. They sprayed the ball down the leg-side to begin their day, allowing Rory Burns to get to his fifty. Not getting much from his bowlers in the first half an hour, Virat Kohli introduced Thakur in the attack. The Indian all-rounder, with his Midas touch, produced the perfect ball in his first over to break the opening stand. Right after Burns got to his fifty, Thakur got on to seam and swing away from Burns off a good length. The deviation was minimal, yet just enough to get the outside edge of Burns’ bat who had no option but to defend the ball. The Indian bowlers got their act together soon after.
With no loose deliveries on offer, Dawid Malan and Haseeb Hameed struggled in their second-wicket stand of 20 runs from 77 deliveries. It was a phase when the chances of an England win faded slowly as the required rate crept up. The duo eventually fell to the pressure created through a lack of scoring opportunities. Tucking Jadeja into the off-side, Hameed set off for a tight single. Malan gave in to his temptation but an awkward dive saw him short of his ground on Mayank Agarwal’s throw to Rishabh Pant. The replays suggested that Malan was caught off guard as he had not taken the head start required for such a run. Hameed and Joe Root saw England through to lunch with India tilting things in their favor.
Post lunch, it was all India. Root did start with a warning to Jadeja by reverse-sweeping his first ball of the session but the left-arm spinner had the better of Hameed. Jadeja spun the ball miles from outside the leg-stump to hit the off stick, beating Hameed’s front foot defence on the outside edge.
The ball had shown a hint of reverse swing in the final quarter of the morning session. Bumrah, returning post-lunch, enhanced the movement, knocking out England with a spell of 2 for 6 in six overs. He left Ollie Pope’s stumps in a mess with an inswinger. Next over, he accounted for Jonny Bairstow with another inswinger, this time an imperious yorker to left England reeling. Jadeja, from the other end, chipped in with the scalp of Moeen Ali and England, having lost 4 wickets for 6 runs, were pushed back to a position of no return.
Root, alongside Chris Woakes, tried to forge a comeback but lost his fight to Thakur, who bowled on the first ball of his second spell. It was a benign delivery that Root chopped onto his stumps while attempting one of his mischievous dabs towards the third man. Four overs later, Woakes fell into India’s leg-side traps, flicking one to KL Rahul at short mid-wicket at the stroke of tea.
India wrapped up the formalities within 10 overs in the evening session, completing another fairytale Day 5 performance this year on foreign soil having drawn in Sydney, winning in Brisbane and now registering their second win in London this series to go 2-1 up.