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Jul 30, 2014 at 12:13am IST

3rd Test: England in control as India fight to save follow-on

Indian batsmen failed to convert good starts into big innings as England took control of the third Test on day three, reducing India to 323 for 8 and in danger of following on after England's 569 for 7 declared.

Murali Vijay (35), Cheteshwar Pujara (24), Virat Kohli (39) and Ajinkya Rahane (54) all got their eye in but failed to make it count, with India still 47 runs away from the follow-on target of 370.

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At stumps, MS Dhoni and Mohammad Shami were unbeaten in the middle at 50 and 4 respectively. James Anderson 3 for 52 and Stuart Broad 3 for 65 led the England attack with three wickets each, while Moeen Ali ended with figures of 2 for 62.

3rd Test: England in control as India fight to save follow-on

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Broad, who had looked tired for much of this series, appeared to have regained his old zest while taking three for 65 in 23 overs.

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Ali may still be categorised as an 'occasional' off-spinner but he too weighed in with valuable wickets either side of tea.

Before play started, Birmingham-born Ali was warned by the International Cricket Council not to repeat his "political" protest that saw him wearing wristbands bearing the words 'Save Gaza' and 'Free Palestine' while batting on Monday.

Ali only managed 12 in an England total built on Ian Bell's 167, Gary Ballance's Test-best 156, captain Alastair Cook's morale-boosting 95 and debutant Jos Buttler's quickfire 85.

India resumed the day on 25 for one.

Murali Vijay was 11 not out and Cheteshwar Pujara four not out.

England, 1-0 down in the five-match series after India's 95-run win at Lord's and without a victory in their 10 previous Tests, badly needed an early breakthrough.

Broad's double strike

Broad, one of several home bowlers appreciably quicker than those playing for India in the absence of the injured Ishant Sharma, whose seven for 74 at Lord's sealed the tourists' victory, got England going with two wickets in quick succession.

Pujara did not get out of the way of a short ball in time and gave Buttler 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.

After lunch, Virat Kohli saw a leaping Cook at first slip drop a catch above his head following a loose cut off Chris Jordan that went for four to take him to 38.

However, the struggling Kohli had added just one run to his score when he edged Anderson and Cook made no mistake at slip.

Rohit Sharma, brought back after India dropped all-rounder Stuart Binny, had offered solid support in a fifth-wicket stand of 74.

But on 28 he sliced a drive off Ali, with Broad holding a fumbling catch at mid-off.

India's 214 for five at tea soon became 217 for six when Rahane, who had made a superb hundred at Lord's, toe-ended an intended pull off an Ali long-hop and substitute fielder Sean Terry, on for the injured Bell, held the gentle catch at mid-wicket.

All-rounder Ravindra Jadeja, who had turned the tide at Lord's with a dashing 68, again opted to counter-attack.

But Anderson, who could be banned by the ICC from the final two Tests of the series because of his confrontation with Jadeja in the drawn opener at Trent Bridge, struck with the new ball to have the left-hander lbw with an inswinger for 31.

Bhuvneshwar Kumar, a thorn in England's side with the bat, struck three fours in four Broad balls.But Broad had his man when Kumar (19) inside-edged the ball onto his pad and was caught by Ballance, diving forward from third slip.

Dhoni, however, smashed Ali for six and cover-drove Broad for four to complete a 103-ball fifty.

(With agency inputs)

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