5th Test: Kuldeep’s five-wicket haul, Ashwin’s four scalps help India bowl out England for 218

Dharamshala: Left-arm wrist-spinner Kuldeep Yadav scythed through England with a sensational five-wicket haul while off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin took four wickets as the visitors’ were bowled out for 218 by India on day one of the fifth and final Test at the HPCA Stadium on Thursday.

Electing to bat first, England were in a strong position at 100/1, before Kuldeep’s 5-72 and Ashwin’s 4-51 led to them being bowled out in 57.4 overs. Only Zak Crawley waged a lone battle with a good-looking 79 as England flattered to deceive, falling like a pack of cards and were outwitted by Kuldeep’s mastery.

It was a brilliant spell from Kuldeep, which also included picking his 50th Test wicket. He bowled a mix of googlies and leg-breaks while drawing the batters on both front and back foot, and is now the second spinner after Australia’s Nathan Lyon to take a five-wicket haul in Tests at Dharamshala, a venue where he made his Test debut in 2017.

Electing to bat first, Crawley and Ben Duckett had to withstand some outstanding swing bowling from a returning Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Siraj asking tough questions constantly. The duo rode their luck as they played and missed deliveries on various occasions while dealing with variable bounce.

While Duckett struggled, Crawley was pristine in his drives whenever he wasn’t troubled by swing and even survived an lbw appeal off Siraj. Duckett brought up the half-century of the partnership, the fifth such instance for England in the series, with a pre-mediated lap-sweep against Ravichandran Ashwin in the 15th over.

Crawley and Duckett took a four each off Kuldeep, but the latter tried to smash a googly over the leg-side, but got a huge leading edge and Shubman Gill ran to his right from cover to take a fabulous diving catch.

Crawley was languid in using his long levers for driving in mid-off, extra cover and down the ground against the spinners to get his fourth fifty of the series. He would also hit the first six of the match by dancing down the pitch to smack Ashwin over long-on. But at the stroke of lunch, Pope came out of the crease for a flick against Kuldeep, but the googly skidded and went past the outside edge to give Dhruv Jurel an easy stumping from behind.

Post lunch, Crawley survived an inside edge to short leg on a leg-break from Kuldeep, as India didn’t take the review, with replays later showing a thin edge. He and Joe Root hit five boundaries between themselves, with Crawley surviving a caught-and-bowled dismissal off Ravindra Jadeja.

But his knock came to an end on 79 when he was tempted into a drive by Kuldeep, but was castled through the gate. Jonny Bairstow, in his 100th Test appearance, came out all guns blazing with his leg-side boundaries, but in an attempt to drive off Kuldeep, he sent a nick behind to keeper Dhruv Jurel.

Joe Root was next to fall, trapped lbw by a Jadeja slider and Kuldeep got his fifth wicket when his googly rapped Ben Stokes in front of the stumps.

Ravichandran Ashwin, playing his 100th Test match, had Tom Hartley top-edging a slog-sweep to deep mid-wicket and Mark Wood edging to slip to pick two wickets in three balls. England could have ended second session at 184/9 if Jurel had caught a thick edge of Bashir off Jadeja.

Post tea, Ashwin got his third wicket as Ben Foakes’ attempted sweep resulted in him rolling back onto his stumps. James Anderson survived an lbw appeal, but in a bid to slog against Ashwin, he mistimed it to mid-wicket, bringing an end to an England innings which didn’t even last 60 overs.

Brief Scores: England 218 in 57.4 overs (Zak Crawley 79; Kuldeep Yadav 5-72, Ravichandran Ashwin 4-51) against India

Also Read: INDvENG: Ravichandran Ashwin Becomes 14th Player To Play 100 Tests For India


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