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India clinch series win after thrilling finale to fourth Test

India clinched a series win over England as they edged out Ben Stokes side by five wickets in a thrilling finale to the fourth Test in Ranchi.

England had threatened a remarkable comeback win as they reduced their hosts to 120-5, chasing 192, shortly after lunch on day four when the superb Shoaib Bashir (3-79) took two wickets in two balls.

But, just as in the first innings, India wicketkeeper Dhruv Jurel (39no) chipped in with another vital contribution and his unbroken 72-run partnership with Shubman Gill (52no) for the sixth wicket proved decisive.

Gill, who had dug in for 119 deliveries without a boundary, suddenly put an end to proceedings as he smashed Bashir for a pair of sixes in the same over to bring up his match-winning fifty before India ticked off the eight remaining runs required without alarm.

Score summary – India win by five wickets

India 192-5 in second innings: Rohit Sharma (55), Shubman Gill (52no), Dhruv Jurel (39no); Shoaib Bashir (3-79)

England 145 all out in second innings: Zak Crawley (60), Jonny Bairstow (30); Ravichandran Ashwin (5-51), Kuldeep Yadav (4-22)

India 307 all out in first innings: Dhruv Jurel (90), Yashasvi Jaiswal (73); Shoaib Bashir (5-119), Tom Hartley (3-68), James Anderson (2-48)

England 353 all out in first innings: Joe Root (122no), Ollie Robinson (58); Ravindra Jadeja (4-67), Akash Deep (3-83)

India had appeared to be cruising to their victory target when, having resumed the morning on 40-0, openers Rohit Sharma and Yashasvi Jaiswal progressed their partnership to 84 without loss.

England, in their desperation, threw the ball to Joe Root (1-26), who had the golden touch by dismissing Jaiswal for 37 with his third ball of the day – the 41-year-old James Anderson taking a terrific diving catch at short third.

Rohit (55) continued to look untroubled at the other end, bringing up a 69-ball fifty, before Tom Hartley (1-70) claimed the crucial breakthrough, tempting the Indian captain into a feathered edge behind.

Tom Hartley celebrates the wicket of Rohit Sharma
Image: Tom Hartley celebrates the key wicket of India captain Rohit Sharma for 55

That wicket swiftly brought another, with Rajat Patidar’s dismal form in the series continuing as he bagged a six-ball duck, popping one up to Ollie Pope at short-leg in Bashir’s next over.

Gill and Ravindra Jadeja (4) dug in through to lunch but, in the second over after the interval, Jadeja’s patience was broken as he picked out Jonny Bairstow at midwicket off a full toss, gifting England their fourth.

That became five a ball later as Pope pocketed another to see off Sarfaraz Khan, Bashir bagging an eighth of the match in only his second Test and suddenly on a hat-trick.

Shoaib Bashir celebrates a wicket on day four of the fourth Test in Ranchi
Image: Shoaib Bashir found himself on a hat-trick as he picked up Ravindra Jadeja and Sarfaraz Khan with back-to-back balls

The 20-year-old bowled about as good a hat-trick delivery as he could have hoped for, very nearly squeezing one between Jurel’s bat and pad.

But, just as momentum appeared to be with England – India going 31 overs without a boundary off the bat – Jurel and Gill gradually wrestled the initiative back in India’s favour with their stubborn stand.

It proved to be Jurel’s second match-altering knock of the Test after his 90 in the first innings helped limit England’s lead to just 46 when they’d seemed set to earn a sizeable advantage heading into day three.

It’s another case of what could have been for the tourists following three-straight defeats in which they’ve had their opportunities in all three matches.

As a result, India take the series, holding an unassailable 3-1 lead heading into the final Test in Dharamshala next week.

India vs England fixtures

Follow over-by-over text commentary from the second Test between India and England, in Dharamshala, live on and the Sky Sports App from 3.30am on Thursday, March 7 (first ball at 4am).

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