India outplayed England on the fifth day of the Oval Test to win the match by 157 runs. This emphatic win from Indians was led by their bowlers, who were outstanding on the day. The visitors started the day needing 10 wickets to win, which was not easy on a placid surface. However, the bowlers bowled England out in just 84 overs. England skipper Joe Root was naturally frustrated with this bitter loss but was also quick to appreciate the efforts of the Indian bowlers.
Led by ever-so-reliable Jasprit Bumrah and all-around brilliance from Shardul Thakur, India bowlers were right on the money in England’s second innings. Shardul Thakur gave India the first breakthrough before a run-out cost Dawid Malan his wicket. Jadeja went past the defences of a set Haseeb Hameed before a fiery spell from Jasprit Bumrah, where he knocked over Ollie Pope and Jonny Bairstow, shattered England’s hopes of a draw. Indian bowlers were all over England in the second session and Root’s wicket just before tea was the final nail in the coffin.
“It’s been frustrating today to lose 10 wickets. But actually, where the game is lost, where we could have really stamped authority on things was earlier in the game, Root said during a virtual press conference.
England collapsed like a pack of cards and lost the remaining nine wickets for just 110 runs. Root felt Indian bowlers were reversing the ball which made it difficult for England batsmen to stay at the wicket.
“Unfortunately we couldn’t quite take it deep enough, and that was a wonderful spell of bowling that really turned the game. They got the ball reversing nicely, and they took advantage of it, and we just didn’t have the right answers, which is slightly frustrating. I think we’ve seen things that we’ve got to get better at.”
“We’ve got to keep looking to improve – recognizing those key moments in games and enforcing our advantage. We did it at Headingley, and we didn’t quite manage to do that this time around. It’s something that we’ve got to be more consistent at,” he added.