By BV Swagath
England have leveled the Test Series against India 1-1 with a clinical 10-wicket victory well inside Lunch on the fourth day of the Mumbai Test. It took England a little over an hour to wrap up the match as India surrendered its last three wickets meekly to leave a target of just 57. Opener Nick Comtpon showed some hidden aggression in his game by smashing an unbeaten 30 (from 28 balls) with 4 fours and a six while Skipper Cook was content with 18* (from 30 balls) as England got to the target in just 9.4 overs.
India lost Harbhajan Singh inside 10 minutes of the start of play on Day 4. Harbhajan launched the first ball of the day from Monty Panesar for a boundary over mid off to show India’s intentions. However, in the next over, Harbhajan went back for a cut off Swann but was forced to glove the jumping off break to slip. Zaheer Khan was dismissed by Monty in an attempted slog sweep against the turn which only resulted in a high top edge. Last to be dismissed was Gautam Gambhir who played very selfishly as he didn’t care to farm the strike and was happy to expose the tail enders.
It was a fitting end that Gambhir was out although he was given out lbw off an inside edge in a forward defence to a drifter from Swann. Gambhir added only 12 runs to his overnight score of 53 while facing 33 balls this morning by defending and nudging the ball only. Monty Panesar finished with mean figures of 6 for 81 in 22 overs while Swann complemented him with 4 for 43. The Man of the Match award was given to Kevin Pietersen for taking the game away from India with his 186.
The third Test of the Series will be played at Kolkata starting from the 5th of next month.
Post Match Comments:
Fabulous performance from England to level the series. India has a lot of revamp to do before the Third Test.
Build Up to Day 4: This is undoubtedly going to be the last day of the Second Test Match. Following a disastrous collapse from India yesterday evening, the writing is on the wall of an English victory. They just need to take the remaining three wickets in hand and chase down a few runs. As of now, India have got an overall lead of 31 runs and have got Gambhir and Harbhajan at the crease. Only a miracle can save India from this losing situation.