Ahmedabad, Feb 25 (IANS) Spinners ruled the roost as India took a 2-1 lead in the four-match Test series with an emphatic 10-wicket win over England on the second day of the third match here on Wednesday. India needed to score only 49 runs for a win and openers Rohit Sharma (25 not out) and Shubman Gill (15 not out) scored those runs in 7.4 overs, even as the dusty pitch comes under scrutiny.
Indian spinners took 19 of the 20 England wickets to fall for a dominating performance at the newly constructed stadium with a pitch that was largely unknown. Sunil Gavaskar described it as a “challenging pitch.
In England’s second innings, three Indian slow bowlers on Thursday bagged all 10 wickets to spin out England for a mere 81 runs, leaving India to score 49 to win.
Left-armer Axar Patel captured five wickets to complete a match haul of 11. Off-spinners R. Ashwin bagged four and Washington Sundar.
England batsmen were completely exposed against spin and only three of them entered double-digit scores, with Ben Stokes being the top scorer with 25 (34 balls, 3x4s).
Earlier in the day, India took a slender 33-run first-innings as they were bowled for 145 in 53.2 overs in the first session. England captain Joe Root, at best a part-time spinner, took a staggering career-best figures of five wickets for eight runs — his first five-wicket haul in first-class cricket — to hasten India’s demise.
Left-arm spinner Jack Leach bagged four wickets for 54, as India slumped from 98 for two to be all out for 145.
Only four Indian batsmen reached the double figures in their first innings, with Rohit Sharma being the highest scorer with 66 off 96 balls.
Brief scores: England: 112 all out in 48.4 overs (Zak Crawley 53, Joe Root 17; Axar Patel 6/38, R Ashwin 3/6) and 81 in 30.4 overs (Ben Stokes 25, Joe Root 19, Ollie Pope 12, Axar Patel 5/32, R. Ashwin 4/48, Washington Sundar 1/1) India: 145 in 53.2 (Rohit Sharma 66, Virat Kohli 27, R. Ashwin 17, Joe Root 5/8, Jack Leach 4/54) and 49/0 in 7.4 overs (Rohit Sharma 25 not out, Shubman Gill 15)
Result: India win by10 wickets