India seal series with emphatic innings victory as England collapse


ndia blew England away on the third day of the Fourth Test at Ahmedabad to seal an emphatic 3-1 series win and book their place in the inaugural World Test Championship final. 

Facing a first innings deficit of 160, England were bowled out for 135 after a top-order batting collapse, Ravi Ashwin and Axar Patel both claiming five-fors as the hosts romped to victory by an innings and 25 runs.

India had resumed their first innings on 294 for seven overnight following Rishabh Pant’s mesmeric ton on day two and pressed home their advantage thanks in large part to an eighth-wicket century stand between Patel and Washington Sundar.

The latter looked on course for a maiden Test century, but when Patel was run out for 43, both Ishant Sharma and Mohammed Siraj fell quickly to Ben Stokes for nought, leaving Washington stranded on 96 not out as the home side were bowled out for 360.

Neither England opener had made it into double figures in the first innings and neither ever looked likely to here, either, Zak Crawley edging Ashwin to Ajinkya Rahane at slip, while Dom Sibley saw a powerful sweep ricochet off short-leg and into the gloves of wicketkeeper Rishabh Pant.

In between, Jonny Bairstow’s disastrous series continued as he was dismissed first ball for a third duck in four innings and Ben Stokes, who had showed signs of a return to form with a first innings half-century, soon followed, miscuing to leg slip for two.


At that point, England were 30 for four, before a partnership between Ollie Pope and Root offered brief resistance. The former hit Ashwin over long-on for one glorious six, but the Surrey man was soon on his way thanks to some superb glove work from Pant, stumped off Patel for 15.

Root was trapped lbw by Ashwin two balls later, leaving Dan Lawrence and Ben Foakes to shepherd England to tea 91 for six, still 69 runs adrift, with Foakes out soon after.

Lawrence would eventually reach his half-century, which, together with his 46 from the first innings, at least offered something of a bright point, but the tail failed to wag alongside him and when he was last man out to Ashwin the inevitable was confirmed inside three days.

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