Nottingham [UK]: All-rounder Hardik Pandya’s maiden five-wicket haul helped India in restricting England to 161 and take a 168-run lead on the second day of the third Test at Trent Bridge on Sunday.
Pandya has now become the second fastest Indian to take a five-wicket haul. He took just 29 balls to wreak havoc. Earlier, spinner Harbhajan Singh clinched five wickets in 27 balls against West Indies in 2006.
After getting 307 runs for the loss of six wickets on the first day, India didn’t start well on Sunday as the lower order only managed to add 22 runs, taking the total to 329.
Openers Alastair Cook (29) and Keaton Jennings (20) provided England with a solid start as the hosts were 46 without any loss at lunch. However, soon after the play resumed, Indian bowlers came down heavily on the England side.
Pacer Ishant Sharma gave the first blow to England after he clinched the wicket of Cook at the score of 54. In the very next over, Jasprit Bumrah took the second wicket of Jennings. Following that, Ollie Pope also got out cheaply after scoring 10 runs.
What happened next was something that England could have never expected. Pandya was brought into attack by Indian skipper Virat Kohli with a hope of keeping the hosts under pressure and he performed much better than usual.
England captain Joe Root (16), Ollie Pope (10), Ben Stokes (10), JM Bairstow (15), Chris Woakes (8), Adil Rashid (5), Stuart Broad (0) and Jos Buttler (39) all fell down cheaply and could only manage a total of 161 runs.
Apart from Pandya, Ishant Sharma (3/32), Jasprit Bumrah (2/37) and Mohammed Shami (1/56) were also among the wicket takers for India.
India would now be aiming to put up a strong target of over 400 and put pressure on England, if they are to win this Test match and stay alive in the series. Currently, England are leading 2-0 in the five Test series.