"When you play Test cricket...": Skipper Rohit Sharma takes dig at England's 'Bazball' style after massive Rajkot win

Rajkot (Gujarat): In a veiled dig at England over is 'Bazball' style of cricket after India steam-rolled the visitors by a massive 434 runs in the third Test at Rajkot, with a day to spare, skipper Rohit Sharma said staying in the game for all five days was more important than winning in two or three days.

A five-wicket haul by ace all-rounder and first-innings centurion Ravindra Jadeja and top knocks from skipper Rohit Sharma, Shubman Gill, double centurion Yashasvi Jaiswal and debutant Sarfaraz Khan saw England sink to its knees and surrender to the hosts inside four days.

The sparkling victory saw the hosts go 2-1 up in the five-match series.

Speaking at the post-match presentation, Rohit said, "When you play Test cricket, you do not play it in two or three days. You have to stay in the game for five days. They played good shots (in the second innings) and put us under pressure but we have got class in our squad when it comes to bowling. So obviously the message was to stay calm (after day two). Important that time to stay calm, otherwise you drift. We stuck to our plans on day three, and when those things happen, it is a delight."

On Jadeja promoted to number five in the first innings and Sarfaraz Khan notching up two half-centuries in his debut Test, the India skipper said, "For this game, we thought he (Jadeja) has so much experience in this format, and scored lot of runs of late. We also wanted left-right batting as well. Sarfaraz being Sarfaraz, we know his quality, we wanted him to have some time before he comes out to bat. We saw what he can do with the bat. By no means is it some long plan with the batting order, we go with what is right for us for that Test match. Including calculating what the opponents' bowling attack is."

On what he felt was the turning point of the match, Rohit said, "Lots of turning points. Once we won the toss, that was a good toss to win. We know runs on board is important in India. The lead was also crucial for us. The way we came out to bowl after the English batters' onslaught, important to stay calm... the bowlers showed a lot of character. Not to forget we did not have our most experienced bowler too (Ravichandran

Ashwin who missed the day three due to personal reasons). I was proud to watch the bowlers. Then in our second innings, we knew half the job was done. We wanted to extend the lead, and the two youngsters helped extend. And then finally Jadeja."

Lavishing praise on young opener Jaiswal, who is in the form of his life in the ongoing series and brought his second double ton in Tests in the second innings at Rajkot, Rohit said, "I have spoken a lot about him. I am sure people outside the changing room have also been talking about him. I want to be calm about him, not talk a lot about him. He has started his career on a high."

Chasing 557, England was bundled out for just 122 runs in 39.4, losing the match by 434 runs. Ravindra Jadeja took 5/41, while Kuldeep Yadav took two wickets. Ravichandran Ashwin and Jasprit Bumrah took a wicket each.

Earlier, India secured a 556-run second innings lead, declaring their second innings at 430/4. Following skipper Rohit's early fall for just 19 runs, young batters Yashasvi Jaiswal and Shubman Gill steadied the ship for India with a 155-run partnership for the second wicket, which ended after Jaiswal retired hurt for 104. India ended the day three at 196/2, with Gill (65*) and Kuldeep Yadav (3*).

On day four, Gill and Kuldeep continued to stitch yet another partnership, which ended with Gill heartbreakingly missing his fourth Test ton due to a run-out, scoring 91 in 151 balls, with nine fours and two sixes. Kuldeep also made a solid 27 in 91 balls, leaving India at 258/4. From this point on, Jaiswal resumed his innings with the fellow Mumbai star Sarfaraz Khan. Both took the English spinners to cleaners.

Jaiswal scored his second double-century in Tests after scoring his first one in the last Test. A key highlight of his knock was smashing veteran pace legend James Anderson for a hat-trick of sixes. Sarfaraz also scored his back-to-back half-century on Test debut. India ended the innings at 430/4, with Jaiswal (214* in 236 balls, 14 fours and 12 sixes) and Sarfaraz (68* in 72 balls, with six fours and three sixes) unbeaten to form a 172-run partnership for the fifth wicket.

Joe Root, Tom Hartley and Rehan Ahmed took a wicket each for England.

Earlier, England in their first inning scored 319 runs in reply to India's 445 runs in their first inning. Though Ben Duckett (153 in 151 balls, with 23 fours and two sixes) scored the fastest century by an English player in India, no other batter could give him much support. Skipper Stokes (41 in 89 balls, with six fours) and Pope (39 in 55 balls, with five fours and a six) played some decent knocks.

Siraj was the pick of the bowlers for India with 4/84, while Kuldeep Yadav and Ravindra Jadeja took two wickets each. Jasprit Bumrah and Ravichandran Ashwin managed a scalp each, with the latter reaching his 500th Test wicket as well.

In the first innings, after opting to bat first, India put up 445 in the first innings. The hosts were rocked by England bowlers earlier and were struggling at 33/3. Then skipper Rohit stepped up, forming a 204-run stand with Jadeja. Rohit scored 131 runs in 196 balls, with 14 fours and three sixes. Jadeja went on to score his third Test ton and crafted a 77-run stand with debutant Sarfaraz (62 in 66 balls, with nine fours and a six). Useful scores from debutant Dhruv Jurel (46 in 104 balls, with two fours and three sixes) and Ashwin (37 in 89 balls, with six fours) took India to a fine total.

Mark Wood justified his selection with figures of 4/114. Rehan got two wickets while Root, Hartley and Anderson got a wicket each.
Jadeja took home the 'Player of the Match' award for his century and seven wickets in the match. 

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