India’s bowlers were belted around the park at Edgbaston in the fourth innings by England openers Alex Lees and Zak Crawley first and then Joe Root and Jonny Bairstow as they lost the fifth Test by seven wickets and thus missed out on a first Test series win in the country since 2007. England managed to chase down a target of 378 – England’s highest in Test cricket and also the most any team has chased against India in the fourth innings – in just over two sessions.
Root and Bairstow both scored unbeaten centuries and put up a stand of 269 runs for the fourth wicket off just 315 balls, thus helping England complete their highest succesfull run chase in Test cricket on a canter. There were some former cricketers who wondered if India had made a mistake by leaving out R Ashwin but head coach Rahul Dravid said that there wasn’t enough spin in the wicket to justify selecting him alongwith Ravindra Jadeja.
“I think you can always look at the hindsight, look at the combinations of your team. I think Shardul (Thakur) has done a good job for us in these games, it is not easy to leave someone like Ash out in a Test match, but having said that, when we had looked at the pitch on the first day, it had a pretty even covering of grass, we felt there was enough in the wicket for the fast-bowlers,” Dravid said in the post-match press conference.
He also added that the lack of sun meant that the pitch didn’t break up towards the last two days. “Coming to the last day, the wicket has not really spun you know. Whether it was Jack Leach or Ravindra Jadeja who bowled in the Test match, if anything because maybe the weather played a part in the first three days, there weren’t long phases of sun but the wicket did not break up as we might have expected it to.
“It did not spin as much as we expected, it is easy to look back at the fifth day and say it would have been nice to have another spinner, but it did not turn enough to justify that. I think we accept that they played really well, we could have just hit the areas better in the fourth innings,” said Dravid.
Trending Topics to Follow