Ollie Robinson's five-for leads England to series-levelling win over India

Resurgent hosts bounce back with crushing innings victory over Kohli's side

On reflection, India should have been expecting this.

One side were battered and bruised, down to the bare bones of their playing resources. They were licking metaphorical wounds, too, having been beaten in emotional fashion a few days earlier.

The other were flying, with the winds of one of their finest ever Test victories last time out beneath their wings.

This should have felt familiar to India. This was them last time they went touring in Tests. They were the ones who were battered and bruised, counting the last available fit players, in Australia. And they came back and won that one.

It bears pointing out this series between England and India is still only just over halfway through. Two games — back to back, at The Oval and Old Trafford — remain to find a winner.

But India should heed the warnings. They did not break England with their gripping, final evening win at Lord’s. Nor did they seal the series.

England might have been in a haze thereafter, with an unselectable batting line up, and injuries to at least five of their best front-line fast bowlers.

All of which should have resonated with India. A side can be down, but don’t count them out.

That said, the turnaround from the humbling at Lord’s to a win by an innings and 76 runs at Lord’s was startling.

Yes, Joe Root and James Anderson featured prominently, as ever. But the Headingley win was a triumph largely for relatively new and unproven.

Ollie Robinson had already, in his brief yet divisive four Test career, shown he can be a bowler of great substance for England.

He proved it in spectacular fashion as the home team blew away the remaining vestiges of Indian resistance on the third morning of the Third Test, taking five for 65.

It started with him trapping Cheteshwar Pujara in front, lbw for 91. For the second Test running, Pujara had shown great fighting qualities in the second innings to give his side belief.

Once he was dislodged — rapped on the pad while leaving the ball, and given out after a video referral — the rot had started for India.

Virat Kohli had a reprieve when he was given out caught behind during a thrilling over by James Anderson.

He had started to traipse off, only to be encouraged by Ajinkya Rahane to revert to DRS, and the review shown he had clipped pad rather than ball.

And yet the Indian captain’s long wait for a century continues. He was caught behind shortly after for 55 by Root at slip off Robinson.

Once he was gone, it was just a matter of time for England, and Craig Overton completed the humbling with two wickets in three balls to finish India for 278.

“We did well to stay in the game yesterday, fight back as much as we could, and gave ourselves a chance,” Kohli said.

“But the pressure today was outstanding from the England bowlers and eventually they got the results they wanted.”

Updated: August 28th 2021, 1:09 PM
EDITOR'S PICKS
NEWSLETTERS