India win as England go into a tailspin

Image courtesy Twitter account of Ajinkya Rahane
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Five-wicket hauls from Ravichandran Ashwin and Axar Patel led India to a magnificent win by an innings and 25 runs on Saturday.

India won the 4-match series 3-1 and made it to the final of the ICC World Test Championship.

India will now face Kane Williamson’s New Zealand which is scheduled to be held in June 2021 at Lord’s.

Resuming the day at 294 for seven in reply to England’s first innings total of 205, the hosts put on board 365 for a big 160-run lead.

India’s batting hero was Sundar whose 113-run partnership with Rishabh Pant had tilted the game in India’s favour on Friday.

Sundar continued the good work and forged another century-plus stand with Axar Patel to put India in charge before Patel was run out for 43.

Patel’s departure triggered a collapse as Ben Stokes trapped Ishant LBW with a stunner, and then three balls later, cleaned up Siraj to end India’s innings.

Sundar stayed unbeaten on 96 while Axar Patel scored 43.

England falter again

For England, their batsmen yet again found it tough to negotiate the challenge posed by the Indian spinners.

As many as 13 wickets fell on Day 3, ten of them for England as they faltered despite getting the best conditions to bat.

Dan Lawrence (50) though showed the required temperament to counter the spinners. Once he was dismissed, India did not take long to wrap up the match and the series.

Left-arm spinner Patel (5/48) and Ravichandran Ashwin (5/47) shared all the England wickets between them.

Rishabh Pant was named Man of the Match and Ashwin, predictably bagged the Man of the Series award.

At the start of this Test series, both India and England were in with a shot of making the final of the WTC.

From India’s point of view, a win by at least a 2-1 margin was good enough.

However, with this handsome victory, they have sealed their position at the top of the table.

Naturally, a lot of questions are being asked about England’s rotation policy.

This is what Michael Vaughan had to say.

India 365 (Pant 101, Sundar 96, Stokes 4-89) beat England 205 (Stokes 55, Patel 4-68) and 135 (Lawrence 50, Ashwin 5-47, Patel 5-48) by an innings and 25 runs