Rohit, Jadeja tons help India to 326-5 in England Test - GulfToday

Rohit, Jadeja tons help India to 326-5 in England Test


India's Rohit Sharma (R) speaks with Ravindra Jadeja during their third Test match against England at Niranjan Shah stadium in Rajkot on Thursday. AFP

Centuries from skipper Rohit Sharma and Ravindra Jadeja helped India recover and then dominate on Thursday after early blows on day one of the third Test against England.

India reached 326-5 at stumps after Sarfaraz Khan smashed 62 on his debut to turn the opposition attack on its head in Rajkot.

The left-handed Jadeja, on 110, and Kuldeep Yadav, on one, were batting at close of play after Sarfaraz was run out.

England pace bowler Mark Wood took three wickets including two early strikes as India slipped to 33-3 before Rohit, who hit 131, and Jadeja put together 204 runs.

The marathon stand is India's first century partnership and the best so far by either team in the five-match series, level at 1-1.

Rohit fell in the final session off Wood but Sarfaraz stepped into the spotlight as he took on the bowlers with regular boundaries including a straight six off Tom Hartley.

"I was padded up for almost four hours and was thinking, 'I have been so patient in my life, (just) a little more patience now,'" Sarfaraz told reporters.

"I went inside and was initially nervous for a few balls but with such a good practice and hard work it all went well."

With his father and wife in attendance, the 26-year-old Sarfaraz, who has averaged over 69 in 45 first-class matches, reached his 50 in 48 balls.

Sarfaraz put on 77 runs with Jadeja, who was promoted in the batting ahead of Sarfaraz, but was run out after a mix-up between the two batsmen and Wood hit the stumps directly at the bowler's end.

Jadeja, who missed the second match with a hamstring injury, raised his ton with a single and celebrated by swinging the bat in his trademark sword dance.

'Threw everything'

Earlier Rohit stood calm to guide India to 93-3 at lunch and kept up the charge, prompting England skipper Ben Stokes to rotate his bowlers in his landmark 100th Test.

Rohit reached his 11th Test ton soon after the tea break.

He hit 14 fours and three sixes before a bouncer from Wood got him to top edge the ball caught by Stokes at mid-wicket.

Wood came in as the only change for England and had the left-handed Yashasvi Jaiswal caught at slip by Joe Root for 10 in the fourth over of the day.

In the next over, Wood induced another nick from Shubman Gill, who was snapped up by wicketkeeper Ben Foakes without scoring.

"Was a great start," England assistant coach Paul Collingwood told reporters.

"We threw everything up in terms of plans and field positions, we fought hard all the way through the day and right till the end," he said.

"It was a hard-fought day and we will see tomorrow. Hopefully take some wickets in the morning."

Spin was introduced after eight overs and Hartley struck with his left-arm spin to send back Rajat Patidar for five.

Rohit survived a hit on the helmet early on in the innings and Root dropped the opener at slips on 27.

He was also given out lbw to James Anderson, who needs five more dismissals to reach 700 Test wickets, but successfully reviewed, with replays showing a faint edge.

Agence France-Presse

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