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England seize control after Kumble~~s record

Published: Saturday, March 11, 2006, 23:53 [IST]
 
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Mohali:Anil Kumble became the third spinner to complete 500 wickets before England struck back to put India in trouble in the second Test.

India, helped by Kumble's five-wicket haul, did well to restrict England to 300 in their first innings before squandering the advantage with loose batting to finish the third day at 149-4.

Skipper Rahul Dravid was unbeaten on 60 for his 41st Test half-century with wicket-keeper Mahendra Dhoni (12). The Indian captain has so far hit four boundaries in his solid 147-ball knock.

India suffered three blows in the space of 38 runs Saturday after Dravid and Wasim Jaffer had put on 76 for the second wicket, the wicket-takers being spinner Monty Panesar, swing bowler Matthew Hoggard and paceman Andrew Flintoff.

Jaffer (31) was caught off an uppish drive in the covers by Flintoff off left-arm spinner Panesar and then star batsman Sachin Tendulkar (four) was beaten by extra bounce to be caught by Andrew Strauss off Flintoff.

Yuvraj Singh (15) fell to a superb diving catch in the covers by Ian Bell off Hoggard to leave his team struggling at 134-4.

Virender Sehwag, who made two and nought in the drawn opening Test at Nagpur, failed again when he contributed 11 before being caught behind off fast bowler Steve Harmison.

England were earlier strongly placed at 283-5 following impressive knocks from stand-in captain Flintoff (70) and wicket-keeper Geraint Jones (52) before floundering against Kumble.

Kumble grabbed three wickets off four deliveries and debutant seamer Munaf Patel two with the second new ball. The afternoon session belonged to Kumble who finished with 5-76, his 32nd haul of five or more wickets in a Test innings.

He is now only behind Australian leg-spinner Shane Warne (659 wickets), Sri Lankan off-spinner Muttiah Muralitharan (600), Australian fast bowler Glenn McGrath (542) and retired West Indies paceman Courtney Walsh (519) in the number of wickets taken.

His memorable moment came when he trapped England tail-ender Harmison leg-before for his 500th victim and then finished the innings by having Panesar caught by Dravid at first slip.

Patel (3-72) also played a big role in containing England, claiming the prize wicket of all-rounder Flintoff in his opening over with the second new ball.

Flintoff, who was on 26 in his team's overnight total of 200-5, had been looking dangerous during his 19th Test century before offering a return catch to Patel who held the ball on second attempt.

The England captain smashed two sixes in one over from debutant leg-spinner Piyush Chawla and 14 fours in his 123-ball knock. He was involved in a 103-run stand for the sixth wicket with Jones.

Jones played a solid knock, hitting eight fours in his sixth Test half-century before playing a Kumble delivery on to his stumps. He also completed 1,000 Test runs during his 134-ball knock.

Scorecard

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