India captain Virat Kohli struck a sublime double century before his bowlers picked up six England wickets to put the hosts on course for a series-clinching victory in the fourth and penultimate test at the Wankhede Stadium on Sunday.
Trailing 2-0 in the series, England needed a win in Mumbai to keep alive the series but the tourists now require something extraordinary to even save the match following Kohli’s batting masterclass.
India piled on 631 in their first innings on the fourth day, a lead of 231 runs over England, after Kohli’s third double century of the year. The touring side were 182 for six in their second innings at stumps, still trailing by 49. Jonny Bairstow was unbeaten on 50 with nightwatchman Jake Ball falling for two in the last over before the close.
Paceman Bhuvneshwar Kumar dismissed first-innings centurion Keaton Jennings for a golden duck and left-arm spinner Ravindra Jadeja sent back England captain Alastair Cook for 18 and Moeen Ali for nought to leave England tottering at 49-3 at tea. Joe Root and Bairstow hit brisk fifties during their stand of 92 for the fourth wicket before the former fell leg before to off-spinner Jayant Yadav for 77.
The wickets of Ben Stokes, who made 18, and Ball to off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin towards the end further dampened England’s hopes of saving the match.—AFP