England registered their first victory in the ICC Test Championship (2021-2023 cycle) after beating India by an innings and 76 runs in the third Test of 5-match series on Saturday (August 28) at the Headingley, Leeds. With this thrashing victory, England also tied the series at 1-1. England dominated over India from the beginning of the match and this momentum continued till the very end. Captain Joe Root once again displayed his absolute class in the contest with a dominating century in England's first innings. The third match report of the ENG vs. IND 2021 series is discussed in this article.
Third Test Match Report of ENG vs. IND 2021 Series
England were anxious to win the third match of the series after losing the second Test by 151 runs against India.
England's bowlers had to shoulder the bulk of the responsibility to put Indian batters on the back foot. Thankfully, they were able to accomplish it by bowling with incredible consistency. Anderson, Robinson, and Overton all targeted the off corridor in an attempt to force Indian batters to play shots. The English bowlers executed their tactics well, bowling India out for only 78 runs in the first innings.
Only two batters, Rohit Sharma (19) and Ajinkya Rahane (18), reached double figures. James Anderson (3), Craig Overton (3), Ollie Robinson (2), and Sam Curran (2) did an excellent job with the ball For England.
After the English pacers' excellent bowling, the local supporters were anticipating some strong batting displays from the English batsmen. The English top order did not disappoint the home crowd, scoring 350 runs for the loss of only four wickets before the Indian pacers made a dramatic comeback in the afternoon session of day two.
English skipper Joe Root was brilliant with the bat. He played a 121-run knock in 165 balls. Rory Burns (61), Haseeb Hamid (68), and Dawid Malan (70) contributed as well. After taking a big 354-run first-innings lead, England were finally bowled out for 432 in the first session of day 3.
England had total control of the match at that point, and the English team management hoped to wrap up the series before the end of day-3. However, India finished the day with 215/2 runs on board thanks to Rohit Sharma (59), Cheteshwar Pujara (91), and skipper Virat Kohli's (55) resilience with the bat.
Though things changed drastically at the start of the first session of day-4, when India lost their last eight wickets in only 19.3 overs, allowing England to bowl India out for 278 runs in the second innings. India suffered an innings defeat as a result of this unexpected collapse.
Ollie Robinson took 5 wickets in the second innings for England, and he was named player of the match for his total of 7 wickets in the match.
England gained 12 Test championship points as a result of the victory. England have now climbed to the top of the ICC Test Championship points table with 14 points. India are currently in second place with 14 points, ahead of Pakistan (12) and the West Indies (12).
The following two matches in the ENG vs. IND 2021 Test series are also crucial for both sides in terms of the ICC Test rankings. India are presently ranked second (119 points), only 7 points behind the table-topper New Zealand. On the other hand, England are in fourth place (107 points), just one point behind third-placed Australia. Both teams have a strong chance to rise up the ICC team rankings if they win the remaining matches in the series.
The ENG vs. IND 2021 Test series is now evenly balanced after each team claiming a victory. India's captain Virat Kohli hasn't hit an international century in 54 innings. He must stand up in the next two matches for the sake of India. While English captain Joe Root has been in scintillating form this year. His batting made the difference in the third Test, and he will be the main man for the remainder of the series. The fourth match of the series will begin on September 2 at the Oval in London. The match will be vital in order to keep a strong position in the series. Whoever wins the fourth Test will have an edge going into the fifth match.