England showed great character after Trent Bridge loss: Ben Stokes
England all-rounder Ben Stokes lauded his teammates for putting out a clinical performance in Southampton. The hosts beat India by a margin of 60 runs to seal the series 3-1, with one more Test to play. The fifth Test match will be played in London.
A target of 245 turned out to be too much for Virat Kohli and his boys. The side lost their last seven wickets for mere 61 runs. Apart from Kohli and Ajinkya Rahane, the rest of the batters struggled to put bat to ball. Openers Shikhar Dhawan and KL Rahul failed to provide the ideal start while Chetehswar Pujara too, couldn’t defend a beauty from James Anderson.
Kohli and deputy Rahane forged a stand of 101 runs for the fourth wicket. However, it was Moeen Ali, who stepped up the gas to send Kohli packing. From there on, there was hardly any fight as wickets tumbled. Stokes scored 23 with the bat in the first innings and picked the wicket of Rahane.
Stokes on the Southampton Test
In the second innings, the southpaw turned out to be Ravi Ashwin’s only wicket. He made 30 before scalping a couple of wickets in the final innings with the ball. “Came here with a bit of pressure after that performance at Trent Bridge. We could have easily crumbled but we showed great character. Pretty special day. The lead that we had was always crucial regardless of their batting line-up” he said.
Stokes dismissed Hardik Pandya and then Ishan Sharma to help his side sniff victory. “Took me back a few years to score those runs (smiles). I just thought that the time I spent out there was crucial. I said to Stuart I have gone away, away, away, is it too greedy to throw one back in and he said, no it’s No. 9 and it worked”. he said.
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