ENG v IND, 5th Test: England on track in chase of 378 despite Bumrah taking out Crawley

Birmingham, July 4 (IANS) Despite India skipper Jasprit Bumrah taking out Zak Crawley just before the tea break, England have managed to keep themselves on track in a mammoth chase of 378. At tea, England are 107/1 in 24 overs, requiring 271 runs more to achieve their highest successful chase in Test cricket.
After Ben Stokes took the remaining three wickets to end India’s second innings at 345 in 81.5 overs, the effect of the heavy roller on the pitch was apparent by the terrific opening stand of 107 between Lees and Crawley, before a ball change and Bumrah brought India back to life an over before tea.
Lees began by successfully taking boundaries off Shami and Bumrah in the first three overs. Crawley was more cautious to balls outside the off-stump before leaning into drives off Shami and Bumrah.
As England raced to 43 runs in eight overs, India introduced Ravindra Jadeja into the attack. But it had little effect on England as Lees danced down the pitch to drive through mid-off before nailing the gap through point to make it two boundaries off Jadeja’s opening over.
Lees continued to be eye-catchy in his stroke play, with an upper cut-off Mohammed Siraj being a standout. He then got his fifty in just 44 balls with a copybook style back-foot punch through cover-point off Siraj.
Crawley, who survived a caught behind appeal off Jadeja, brought out some exquisite drives and flicks and started to find gaps crisply for fun. The left-right duo brought up England’s century in 19.5 overs, marking the first-century stand between the two.
For India, who got to change the ball after 20.5 overs, Bumrah brought himself on in the 22nd over and got success on the fourth ball as Crawley’s off-stump was castled, with the batter offering no shot to an in-ducker, providing India a vital breakthrough an over before tea.
Earlier, Stokes, who had taken out Virat Kohli on Sunday, bounced out Mohammed Shami, having him caught at deep backward square leg. Jadeja never got going and Stokes ended his stay by getting one to jag in sharply and force the left-hander to chop on his stumps.
Bumrah, the Indian skipper, pulled him for a huge six over fine leg. But Stokes had the last laugh on the very next ball as Bumrah went for the same shot, only to hole out to fine leg, with Stokes ending with 4-33 in 11.5 overs as India set England a mammoth target of 378.
Brief scores: India 416 and 245 in 81.5 overs (Cheteshwar Pujara 66, Rishabh Pant 57; Ben Stokes 4-33, Matthew Potts 2-50) against England 284 and 107/1 in 23 overs (Alex Lees 56 not out, Zak Crawley 46; Jasprit Bumrah 2/24). England need 271 runs to win.

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