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Ravi Ashwin & Rohit Sharma inspired India win the 2nd Test against England by 317 runs at Chepauk

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Team India was trailing in the 4 Test Match series ahead of the 2nd Test at Chepauk, but courtesy of Rohit Sharma’s 161 with the bat in the first innings, Ashwin’s 5 wickets in the second innings, Virat’s gritty 62, and a stunning century by Ravi Ashwin while a 5-fer from Axar topped off a 317 runs victory for India against England. This win at Chepauk in the second test got the series level at 1-1 while also making this a record for Team India against England by making this the highest ever victory margin in terms of runs.

The Hitman was on song on Day 1 at Chepauk where he tormented the bowlers while scoring a big hundred (Image Source: BCCI Twitter)

Day 1- Rohit Sharma’s class and Rahane’s grind give India an edge

India won the toss and elected to bat first on Day 1 with the pitch looking like it would assist the spinners from the outset. Shubman Gill was out LBW in the second over with Olly Stone getting the better of the in-form youngster. With the trustable Pujara at the other end, Rohit Sharma got into his groove early in the game. He played some mesmerizing cover drives and tonked Ben Stokes and Jack Leach beyond the boundary ropes to assert his dominance into the match.

Jack Leach got the wicket of Pujara while Virat Kohli was out on the third ball of Moeen Ali while trying to play an expansive cover drive, leaving a country mile between his bat and pad and the ball sneaked through to take his stumps. Rohit had already scored more than 80 runs in the first session but it was the partnership between the Mumbaikars in a wicketless second session that managed to stabilize the Indian innings. Rahane and Rohit were watchful but made sure every bad ball ended up with the fielder running beyond the boundary.

Rohit completed a stunning hundred in cruise control mode and showed his elegance at one end with his sweeps and cuts and drives while the gritty Rahane grinded at the other end. India lost Rohit Sharma at 161 when he got a sweep shot wrong for a change and then lost Rahane trying to pull off his attempt of a sweep. India also lost Ravi Ashwin in the final session but Rishabh Pant stabilized the game and the day ended at 300-6.

 

Day 2- Ravi Ashwin with a 5-fer and a dream debut for Axar Patel give India a massive lead as England crumble

Rishabh Pant decided to take the attack to the spinners again as the pitch started deteriorating early on Day 2 in an effort to maximize scoring. He scored 58 of 77 balls while Axar, Siraj, Ishant, and Siraj failed to give the necessary support to Pant. Jack Leach and Moeen Ali took 4 wickets each in the match as India ended their innings at 329.

Ishant Sharma got the England opener, Rory Burns, out in the very first over. India also got the wickets of Dom Sibley through Ravi Ashwin and Axar got his first Test wicket in the form of Joe Root, who for a change failed in playing his famous sweep shot while only managing to top-edging it to short fine-leg. Ravi Ashwin won the mental battle on the last ball before Lunch as he enticed Lawrence into giving his wicket away as England were reeling at 39/4 at Lunch.

Stokes and Pope showed little in terms of character and application on a turning track while Ashwin got the better of Stokes again and Pant took a wordie of a catch off the bowling of Siraj to dismiss Pope. With Foakes’ 42 N.O. England managed to put up 134 on the board and avoided the follow-on.

India lost Shubman Gill again before the close of play but Rohit Sharma and Cheteshwar Pujara ensured India ended Day 2 with the score of 54/1 and with a massive lead of 249 runs. Rohit Sharma was rather controversially given not out in the first innings on a stumping and similarly was given not out when the third umpire deemed to have called it a “shot offered” but the England team felt otherwise.

 

Chennai lad Ravichandran Ashwin scored a 106 of just 148 balls to send fans at Chepauk into celebrations mode (Image Source: BCCI Twitter)

Day 3- Ravi Ashwin scores a dream century at Chepauk as he & Virat help India set England a target of 482

India had a terrible start to the day losing Pujara, Rohit, Rahane & Pant in the first hour of the first session while the England spinners Jack Leach and Moeen Ali seemed to have made the most of the conditions. India lost Axar Patel soon after drinks and the Chennai lad Ashwin walked into the middle to bat with Virat Kohli. Ashwin came out with positive intent making the sweep shot (sometimes even the reverse sweep) his best friend and put the onus back on India while Virat was displaying a batting masterclass at the other end.

Ravi Ashwin and Virat Kohli continued their same mode of batting after Lunch with the all-rounder hitting the bowlers for some glorious boundaries and also showed his match intelligence by strike rotation. Ashwin was dropped off Broad’s bowling but another “Umpire’s call” didn’t go India’s way when Moeen dismissed Virat Kohli who looked set for a hundred but got out on an artful 62. India were 221/8 at Tea.

The dismissal of Ishant meant Siraj joined Ashwin in the middle but with the No.11 batsman around, Ravi Ashwin decided to show controlled aggression with the bat. He bamboozled the England bowlers with his strokeplay but ironically got his century moment via an outside edge that looped above the short third-man into the boundary.

Little did that matter to Ravi Ashwin as he scored his 5th Test Match Hundred, the first at his home-ground Chepauk. A truly emotional moment! Siraj who was cheered on for every ball he played out before Ashwin’s hundred decided to show his appreciation for the crowd with 2 magnificent sixes which would shame even the best of batsman. Indian innings ended at 286 when Ashwin got out.

England simply couldn’t resist the Indian spinners again before the close of play as they ended the Day on 53/3 which possibly could have been 4 had the “Umpire’s call” gone the other way. Fair to say the day belonged to Ravi Ashwin!

 

Day 4- Axar Patel picks up 5 wickets as India seal a huge win at Chepauk

The day started with the early wicket of Dan Lawrence and with the quick wickets of Pope, Stokes, and Foakes, England were simply unable to stay on the pitch while Axar and Ashwin seemed to be unplayable. England were 116/7 at Lunch with Kuldeep Yadavhaving joined the wicket-taking party.

Moeen Ali entertained the crowd and while for a few minutes it did look like he would break Misbah’s fastest test 50 world record, Kuldeep Yadav enticed the England batsman into a false shot only for Rishabh Pant to show his spiderman moves behind the stumps and end the England innings at 164. India sealed a massive win and the series was level at 1-1. The euphoria was there for everyone to see at Chepauk where the joyful Indian team and the ecstatic crowd had seen a historical win over England in a much-expected change of fortunes after the first test.

Ravi Ashwin was awarded the Man of the Match after his magnificent knock of 106 and a 5-fer and a 3-fer with the ball to single-handedly confirm the momentum in India’s favor. England will look back at this game with lots of learning to be taken despite the pitch controversy. All said and done, India were the better team and did not give England even an inch in this match by winning 9 sessions and sharing the other 3 in this match. With all attention now shifting to Motera for the Pink Ball Test, India have lots to be excited about!

 

Also Read: 7 Reasons why India lost to England in the first test at Chennai

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