England pacer Stuart Broad has warned India that they will face a “tough run chase” in the last innings of the ongoing fourth Test being played at Ageas Bowl, Southampton.
India had begun Day Three of the fourth Test with a slender first-innings lead but ended it trailing England by 233 runs, with two wickets still to get. England will resume on Sunday on 260/8 and should Sam Curran and Stuart Broad accumulate more runs in the morning, then India will have a stiff challenge ahead if they are to remain hopeful of winning this series.
“If you’re a fan of cricket, get down to the Ageas Bowl on Sunday because it could be a cracker. We’ll need 10 wickets and India will face a tough run chase. Whoever ends up winning, this game has summed up the best of Test cricket. Every ball counts,” Broad wrote in his column for dailymail.co.uk.
The hosts were helped by a fine half-century by Jos Buttler (69) and valuable contributions from captain Joe Root (48) and Sam Curran, who built on his half-century in the first innings with an unbeaten 37 on Saturday, ensuring that the visitors, who are 2-1 down the series, will be at least around 250 when they bat last.
After enduring a testing morning courtesy of some wicked seam bowling from the Indian attack, England’s middle-order rallied to great effect, Buttler sharing stands of 56 and 55 with Ben Stokes and Curran, respectively.
Heaping praise on the England fightback in the ongoing Test, the right-arm pacer said, “What I’ve really enjoyed about this game is the character we’ve shown to keep fighting back. We were 86 for six on the first day before Sam Curran batted brilliantly for 78. Then India were 140-odd for two on Friday before Moeen Ali got to work with his off-spin.
Even on Saturday, we were in a spot of bother until Ben Stokes and Jos Buttler knuckled down. Stokesy’s 30 felt more like 60 and Jos’s 69 was more like a hundred. We may not be making the totals we’d like but we’re finding a way of putting pressure on India”
“Whatever we end up setting them on Sunday, one thing we’ll be saying as a bowling unit is to bowl as heavy as you can and as quickly into the pitch as you can, with protection either side. Above all, bowl with intensity,” he added.
England are 2-1 in the five-Test series and Broad feels it’s now up to the hosts to seal the series.