The win was in the air as the 5th day commenced and everyone knew India would prevail but none had imagined how thinly England would fold. Having started the day at 182 for 6, still 49 runs behind the first innings Indian score, England gave up immediately as they lost their remaining 4 wickets without a fight for just 13 runs in 8 overs to give India a series winning victory by an innings and 36 runs. This is India’s first series win against England in 4 test series and also the first win against them at Wankhede since 1993. Overall, India are now unbeaten for 17 tests straight to equal their previous record. Ashwin picked up 6 wickets for the second time in the match to take his tally to 12 wickets for the match.
Earlier England yet again won the toss and elected to bat first. Young Keaton Jennings walked out to open in his debut match with Alastair Cook. India would have hoped for some help early for the fast bowlers and Bhuvneshwar Kumar did swing the new ball but without success. Jennings playing his first international innings got a life when he had not scored and did not look back from there. He displayed a cool head and good skills to counter the spin heavy Indian bowling. Along with Cook, he stitched together an opening partnership of 99 runs before Cook failed to connect one off Jadeja to get stumped. Jennings kept going as Joe Root fell early for 21 runs and Moeen gave him ample support to help bring up a fabulous century on debut. England were solidly placed on 230 for 2 when Ashwin struck twice to remove both the set batsmen, Moeen for 50 and Jennings for 112. From 230 for 2, England collapsed to 297 for 6 as India looked to get a grip back on the match and try and restrict England to a manageable first innings total. The English lower order kept the scorecard rolling with useful partnerships, specially Jos Buttler. England finally were dismissed for 400 runs as Buttler was the last wicket to fall for a brave 76 runs. Ashwin and Jadeja shared all 10 wickets amongst them. Ashwin got 6 for his 23rd five wicket haul while Jadeja had 4.
KL Rahul was back to open for India with Murali Vijay and looked good for his 24 before Moeen Ali let one through the bat and pad of Rahul to hit the timber. At 39 for 1, Pujara joined Vijay and as they often do, started the rebuilding process with yet another century partnership. Pujara fell for 47 as Vijay looked set for a ton. Virat Kohli joined Vijay and the result was yet another century partnership as Vijay completed his century and Kohli looking in ominous form. India were strongly placed at 263 for 2 when just like the England innings, India faced a mini collapse too as they lost the next 4 wickets for 44 runs to reach 307 for 6. Kohli was unbeaten at one end while wickets tumbled at another. India has had an amazing run of lower order contributions recently and the best was yet to come in this innings. First Jadeja scored 25 to get a 57 run partnership with Virat to close in on England total and then the young Jayant Yadav took upon the baton to put up the best ever show for an Indian No. 9 batsmen. While Kohli was jumping past his milestones of 100, 150 and then 200, Jayant got himself noticed big time with a strokeful and classy century. Kohli had his third double hundred of the year, all three as a captain, a record again and Jayant had the highest score by an Indian at No. 9 with a record partnership of 241 runs. Kohli finished at a career best 235, Jayant at 104 and Indian first innings total stopped at 631 all out giving a potentially match winning lead of 231 runs to India.
The pitch was rough, the ball was turning, bouncing and misbehaving and England on the 4th day afternoon had a 231 run wall to breach to make India bat again. First innings centurion Jennings tasted the harsh reality of test cricket as he departed for a first ball duck off Bhuvneshwar Kumar. Later Jadeja sent back Cook and Moeen Ali cheaply to peg back England at 49 for 3. Joe Root was holding the fort for England as he scored quickly along with Johnny Bairstow to lead England counter charge. Root was looking ominous and well set for a brilliant ton when he misread one from Jayant Yadav to be LBW and walked back for 77 runs. Bairstow completed his half century as Ben Stokes and night watchman Jake Ball fell cheaply to Ashwin at the other end. The rest as they say is history.
Virat was adjudged the man of the match for his epic knock of 235 runs. India`s biggest gain this series has been the rise of the lower order with the bat. The team is looking good for more. England on the other hand have looked clueless everytime in their second innings and it is in fact too late now for them to scrutinize this fact. England would like to get some of their pride back in the 5th and final test at Chennai while India would look to stamp their authority.
Ind Vs Eng, 4th Test, Mumbai
Result: India beat England at Wankhede after 23 years; beat England in a test series after 3 series losses.
England 400 & 195 (55.3 ov)