Dharamsala Test: Rohit, Gill centuries deflate England

Dharamsala, Mar 8 (UNI) The second century of the series by Rohit Sharma and Shubman Gill helped India deflate England and raced past their first innings total of 218 at lunch on Day 2 of the fifth and final Test here on Friday.

At the first break, Rohit and Gill were batting on 102 and 101, respectively as India were 264/1, leading England by 46 runs.

The duo went about scoring runs at the rate of five runs per over to get 129 runs without losing a wicket in the pre-lunch session.

This swashbuckling approach unnerved the English bowlers in the major part of the session, but Rohit and Gill went into a cautious mode as they neared their centuries.

The duo came out with a clear plan to dominate the proceedings by taking on the English bowlers. And unsurprisingly, Rohit started with a six and four off Shoaib Bashir.

Gill also joined his skipper by unleashing his insignia backfoot strokes on both sides of the wicket. And also danced down out of the crease to punish bad balls into the stands. To check the onslaught, Ben Stokes employed short-pitch stuff but to no avail.

Rohit had a party whacking Mark Wood who was feeding him to his strength, and the skipper hooked and pulled mercilessly, besides punching on backfoot off short-pitch balls.

Except for a couple of streaky shots through the slips, both the batsmen were an edifice of perfection on the surface having eased out in comparison to yesterday morning when there was a bit of help in there for the seamers.

Having reached their centuries, Rohit and Gill will look to extend the lead and England would like to get a breakthrough, probably Stokes would be thinking of doing it by sending a few overs for a change.

Brief scores

India 264/1 (Rohit Sharma 102*, Shubman Gill 101*, Yashasvi Jaiswal 57) lead by England218 (Zak Crawley 79; Kuldeep Yadav 5-72, Ravichandran Ashwin 4-51) by 46 runs

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