Broad keeps India on the back foot
SOUTHAMPTON Stuart Broad took wickets at either end of a long, hot day while Moeen Ali turned the focus back on to his cricket as England strengthened their grip on the third Test against India in Southampton.
At the close of Tuesdays third day, India were 323 for eight in reply to Englands imposing first innings 569 for seven declared, a deficit of 246 runs and still needing a further 47 to avoid the follow-on.
India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni was 50 not out and Mohammed Shami four not out.
Broad, who had looked tired for much of this series while struggling with a knee injury, appeared to have regained his old zest while taking three for 65 in 23 overs.
Meanwhile James Anderson, Englands other senior pace bowler, who had taken a wicket late on Monday, finished Tuesday with three for 52 in 24.
Ali may still be categorised as an occasional off-spinner but he too weighed in with valuable wickets either side of tea.
It was a decent day for batting so to have picked up seven or eight wickets in the day is pretty encouraging, Broad told Sky Sports.
But it makes it crucial to try to finish India off in the first half-hour.
The ball didnt swing a huge amount for us today, he added.
We didnt want to give any free drives away, we just wanted to keep the batsmen hanging back a bit. Indias Ajinkya Rahane, who gave his wicket away against Ali having made 54, admitted: Initially it was quite challenging, they bowled in good areas.
Im sure well get some runs tomorrow and its going be a good game. Beforeplaystarted, Birmingham-born Ali, a practising Muslim, was warned by the International Cricket Council not to repeat his political protestthatsawhimwearing wristbands bearing the words Save Gaza and Free Palestine while batting on Monday.
Ali only managed 12 in an England total built on Ian Bells 167, Gary Ballances Test-best 156, captainAlastairCooksmorale-boosting 95 and debutant Jos Buttler s quickfire 85. India resumed on 25 for one. Murali Vijay was 11 not out and Cheteshwar Pujara four not out.
England, 1-0 down in the fivematch series after Indias 95-run win at Lords and without a victory in their10previousTests, badlyneeded an early breakthrough.
Broad, one of several home bowlers appreciably quicker than thoseplayingforIndiaintheabsence of the injured Ishant Sharma, whose seven for 74 at Lords sealed the tourists victory, got England going with two wickets in quick succession.
Pujara did not get out of the way ofashortballintimeandgaveButtler a simple catch for his first Test dismissal.
Broad struck again when Vijay, also attempting to withdraw his bat, deflected the ball onto his stumps.
The struggling Virat Kohli, who gave a tough chance to Cook on 34, fell soon afterwards for 39 when he edged Anderson to the England captain at first slip.