Cook slams ton, but Ojha leads India's quest for victory

Last Updated: Sun, Nov 18, 2012 07:33 hrs

England captain Alastair Cook notched up his third century against India, but the visitors lost three wickets to reach 182 for 3 at lunch in their second innings after following on, even as the home team pressed hard for victory on fourth day of the first Test here today.

England still trail India by 148 runs with seven wickets remaining. The hosts had scored a huge first innings total of 521 for eight declared before bundling England all out for 191 in their first essay.

Cook, overnight 74 in team's second innings total of 111 for no loss, remained unbeaten on 109 at lunch today here at the Sardar Patel Stadium. The captain exhibited patience and skillful batting on a turning track.

Cook faced 205 balls in his 267-minute stay at the crease, while striking 17 fours. Ian Bell was the other not out batsman on 11 at the interval.

Pragyan Ojha, who had picked up five for 45 to help skittle out England for a paltry 191 in the first innings, was again the chief wicket-taker with impressive figures of two for 54 in 23 overs.

The left-arm spinner, brought on quite late into the attack, accounted for two wickets in a space of seven balls, by packing off Jonathan Trott for 17 and star batsman Kevin Pietersen for 2 to leave England tottering at 160 for 3 half an hour before lunch.

Senior left arm pacer Zaheer Khan gave India the initial breakthrough after 28 minutes into the fourth morning by dismissing debutant opener Nick Compton for 37.

Compton was lucky not to be given out when he was rapped in front by the unlucky Ravichandran Ashwin and then survived a clear stumping chance by Dhoni off the same bowler.

Cook and Ian Bell, however, prevented further damage after the fall of Trott and Pietersen in quick succession.

Zaheer took one for nine in seven overs, while Ashwin, who had claimed 3 for 80 in the first innings, was wicket-less after bowling 11 overs this morning.

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