India won the fourth Test against England by 157 runs, only their second ever at The Oval and first since 1971, to take an unassailable 2-1 lead in the five-match series. This is also only the second occasion in history, following 1986, that India has won two Tests in a row in England.
Last month, they defeated England by 151 runs in the second Test at Lord’s.
England began the fifth and final day with a solid position of 77 without loss, and after losing a few wickets in the opening session, they had advanced to 131/2 and appeared to be on track to draw the Test.
However, between overs 61.3 and 67.2, pacer Jasprit Bumrah (2/27) and spinner Ravindra Jadeja (2/50) swung the game in India’s favor, sharing four wickets to pierce the core of England’s batting.
Jadeja dismissed opener Haseeb Hameed (63 of 193) with a one-handed off-stump that twisted from the rough and clipped his off-stump.
Bumrah then delivered a double whammy to England, breaching the defenses of Ollie Pope (2) and Jonny Bairstow (0) in his next two overs.
Jadeja then chose Moeen Ali, who had been caught with a bat-pad.
England improved from 141/2 to 147/6.
England remained in the game thanks to a 35-run partnership between Joe Root (36) and Chris Woakes (18). However, Root was unfortunate to be bowled off Shardul Thakur when he sliced the ball onto the stumps.
Woakes was caught at mid-wicket off Umesh Yadav (3/60) at the stroke of tea. In the session between lunch and tea, India had taken six wickets.
They immediately cleaned up the tail after tea.
After being knocked out for 191 in the first innings, India won with a stunning reversal. On a calm surface, they were able to limit England’s first-innings lead to 99 runs.
The second innings saw stronger batting from Virat Kohli’s team. The top three batters excelled, as India reached 466 with contributions from the middle and lower order, setting England a target of 368 to win.
It was just too much for England to bear.
Shardul Thakur was the unsung hero who made the difference, scoring fifty in both innings and taking three important wickets. The first innings half-century helped India reach 191, while the second innings fifty enabled him stitch a 100-run seventh-wicket stand with Rishabh Pant, taking the advantage over 300.
In the second innings, Rohit Sharma achieved his first overseas Test century. Cheteshwar Pujara and captain Virat Kohli both scored fifty.
Umesh Yadav, making his comeback, grabbed six wickets, while Jasprit Bumrah took four.
Scores in brief:
India 191 and 466 vs England 290 and 210 all out in 92.2 overs (Rory Burns 50, Haseeb Hameed 63, Joe Root 36, Jasprit Bumrah 2/27, R Jadeja 2/50, Umesh Yadav 3/60, Shardul Thakur 2/22)