Jurel heroics keep England lead to 46


Dhruv Jurel fell 10 short of his maiden Test hundred.

A heroic 90 from Dhruv Jurel and a patient 28 from Kuldeep Yadav helped India fight back in the fourth Test in Ranchi as they ensured England didn't fetch a substantial first-innings lead. At one point, it did appear that Bashir's efforts on the second day would give England all the momentum. The offspinner went on to complete a five-wicket haul on the third morning but not before India turned their fortunes around.

Both Kuldeep and Jurel were very sedate to begin proceedings as they looked content to just bat out time. The first boundary of the day came only after England took the hard new ball as Jurel drove one down the ground off Ollie Robinson. In the very next over, a confident Kuldeep drove Shoaib Bashir for a boundary as frustration slowly started to creep into the England camp.

The dogged resistance finally came to an end after the first hour of play when James Anderson broke through. Kuldeep inside edged one that hit the pad before hitting the stumps, much to his disappointment. Jurel shortly brought up his maiden Test fifty. Post that, the wicketkeeper-batter was ready to take his chances with Akash Deep at the other end.

While England were happy to give him the single, Jurel farmed the strike for the majority of the time every over. He even received a reprieve when the fielder at midwicket failed to make use of an opportunity. Jurel took full toll of that to smash Bashir for a four and a six off successive deliveries before hammering the same bowler for another six in his following over to race into the 80s.

Akash, who was playing the ideal foil until that point, stunned England by using the long handle to good effect by clearing deep midwicket before getting trapped lbw by Bashir. That forced Jurel to keep playing his shots but unfortunately at 90, he was bowled by a Tom Hartley delivery that turned away sharply to beat his outside edge and crash into the stumps.

Brief scores: England353 lead India 307 (Dhruv Jurel 90, Yashasvi Jaiswal 73; Shoaib Bashir 5/119) by 46 runs