At the stumps of the third day of the opening Test of the four-match Test series at Chennai, the visitors England have the upper hand over the hosts India.
Starting the day on their overnight score of 555/8, England added 23 more runs before losing all their wickets of the innings. After getting all out for 578 runs, the visitors continuously put the hosts under pressure as India finished the day on 257/6. The hosts are still trailing by 321 runs.
India vs England 2021, 1st Test: Day 3 – Cheteshwar Pujara and Rishabh Pant controlled the day after four early wickets
England batted 10.1 overs in the morning as they decided to get all out in the first innings. After setting up the mammoth first innings total, Jofra Archer struck early by dismissing the opener Rohit Sharma (6) in the fourth over of the innings.
In the 10th over of the innings Archer took his second wicket after dismissing the other opener Shubman Gill (29) as James Anderson successfully took a superb diving catch at wide mid-on. At lunch, India were struggling on 59/2.
England started the second session strongly after dismissing skipper Virat Kohli (11) and Test vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane (1) for cheaply. Dom Bess took both those big wickets while English Test captain Joe Root took a stunning one-handed catch at short cover to dismiss Rahane.
While India were struggling on 73/4, Cheteshwar Pujara and Rishabh Pant handled the situation very well that helped the hosts to fight back. Pant continued his aggressive batting from the one side while Pujara maintained his very familiar strong defensive batting at the other side.
Just before the tea, both these batsmen completed their half-centuries. At the tea break, India were batting on 154/4.
In the early third session, the very crucial Pujara-Pant partnership reached the 100 runs mark. But in the 51st over of that innings, Pujara very unfortunately lost his wicket. Going for a pull shot to Dom Bess, Pujara’s shot hit the back of the short-leg fielder Ollie Pope, who was trying to duck to avoid that shot, and the ball moved to the short midwicket where Rory Burns took a simple catch. While Pujara and Pant put the 119 runs partnership for the fifth wicket, Pujara lost his wicket after scoring 73 off 143 balls (11 fours).
Then Pant and Washington Sundar put the 33 runs partnership for the sixth wicket. But while Pant was just nine runs short from his century, he lost his wicket that put the hosts into real trouble. He went to his Bess but it couldn’t connected properly and Jack Leach took a good catch at deep cover. Before that dismissal, Pant scored 91 off 88 balls with the help of 9 fours and 5 sixes.
Washington Sundar and Ravichandran Ashwin ensured that India didn’t lose another wicket in the day three. At the stumps of the day, while Sundar scored 33 not out, Ashwin was batting on 8 runs. Sundar and Ashwin have already provided the 32 runs partnership for the unbroken seventh wicket.
In the meantime, off-spinner Dom Bess got four wickets on Sunday as he has managed the bowling figures of 23-5-55-4.
Brief Scores: England – 578 (Joe Root 218, Dom Sibley 87; Jasprit Bumrah 3/84)
India – 257/6 (Rishabh Pant 91, Cheteshwar Pujara 73; Dom Bess 4/55)