Spinners of both the sides dominated proceedings on Day 2 of the Mumbai Test. After bundling out England for 400 in the first innings, India managed to reach 62/1 at tea.
Murali Vijay (31*) and Cheteshwar Pujara (7*) were at the crease.
Moeen Ali dismissed opener K.L. Rahul (24) who’s making a comeback after an injury. The off-spinner managed to sneak one in between the batsman’s bat and pad to rattle the stumps.
Indian spinners continued to torment England, as Ravichandran Ashwin (six for 112) and Ravindra Jadeja (four for 109) made full use of the spin and bounce on offer at the Wankhede. However, it wasn’t a bad outing for the visitors, whose total of 400 is nearly 80 runs more than the average first innings score at the venue.
Jos Buttler’s gritty 76 powered the visitors who resumed at 288/5 on Day 2.
England lost the hard-hitting Ben Stokes on 31 just few overs into the day. Chris Woakes’ (11) stay was cut short by a sharp spinning delivery from Ravindra Jadeja, who opened the bowling with Ashwin. The all-rounder’s defensive prod induced a faint edge that Parthiv Patel pocketed with ease. A few overs later, he sent Adil Rasheed (4) back with an arm-ball.
The 26-year-old Buttler notched up his sixth half century in 106 balls. The wicketkeeper-batsman held the lower order together, even as they nudged and struggled to cope against the spin trio of Ashwin, Jadeja and Jayant Yadav.
However, just when things started to look downhill for England, the lanky Jake Ball and Buttler stitched together a crucial partnership of 51, showing some obdurate defence and the ability to keep the scoreboard ticking.
Post lunch, Ashwin returned to dismiss Ball (31) with a loopy ball that jumped on the batsman who was looking to cut it. Buttler was the last batsman to be dismissed.
India leads the five-Test match series 2-0.