Team India made a terrific comeback on the third day of the ongoing first Test against New Zealand in Kanpur. Credit goes to the bowlers who united to bowl out the visitors for 296, handing the hosts a 49-run lead in the first innings. The top-performer of the day was left-arm spinner Axar Patel, who scripted history by picking up the fifth five-wicket haul, in just the fourth game of his Test career. Besides Axar, there were several players who made a mark on Saturday at Green Park. Let’s have a look at all the talking points: Axar Patel’s Five-wicket Haul continued his golden run in favorable home conditions, grabbing another five-wicket haul to put India in the driver’s seat.
Axar Patel picked up his fifth fifer in just the fourth Test match of his career. The left-arm spinner became the Indian with most five-wicket hauls in the first four Tests, equalling the records of former Australian seamer Rodney Hogg and ex-England English Tom Richardson. Ashwin Providing the Breakthrough, The Kiwi openers – Tom Latham and Will Young – resumed the innings with the same confidence with which they toyed with the Indian bowlers on Thursday. The duo added 22 runs to their overnight score of 129, taking their partnership to 151. But before they could march ahead, it was Ashwin who breached the camaraderie and provided the much-needed breakthrough.
He removed Young for 89 and then picked two more wickets in the final session to complete a 3-wicket haul in the first innings. Heroics of KS Bharat The Karnataka wicketkeeper came in as a substitute for Wriddhiman Saha who suffered a neck strain and didn’t take the field. Bharat took a couple of great-looking low catches and effected a brilliant stumping to send back Tom Latham packing for 95. He missed out on a chance to dismiss Ross Taylor, but compensated soon with his agility and helped India bowl New Zealand out for 296.
Ashwin’s Heated Exchange with Umpire Nitin Menon, The pitch on the third day didn’t change its character as it stayed low and slow but the Indian spinners did better as the time progressed by varying the pace of their deliveries. During the session, Ashwin was seen involved in an animated discussion with umpire Nitin Menon after he decided to come round the wicket against Williamson and cautioned for walking on the dangerous area on his follow-through, which also obstructed the umpire’s view. Meanwhile, Axar Patel bagged the fifth five-wicket haul in just the fourth Test match of his career.
The left-arm spinner became the Indian with most five-wicket hauls in the first four Tests, equalling the records of former Australian seamer Rodney Hogg and ex-England English Tom Richardson. The intention was to create a few roughs with his bowling spikes in the region. Menon, having understood the motive, had a word with Ashwin and skipper Ajinkya Rahane and after some discussions, normalcy prevailed. The veteran off-spinner also went past former Pakistan pace legend Wasim Akram’s career tally of 414 Test wickets in the list of highest Test wicket-takers.
As soon as Ashwin got the better of Kyle Jamieson, in the final session, he took his tally of wickets to 415. The Tamil Nadu cricketer now has 416 wickets to his name in 80 matches. Kyle Jamieson Fastest New Zealander to 50 Test Wickets: The tall Kiwi speedster once again found a gaping hole between Shubman Gill’s bat and pad and knocked him over in the second innings for 1. Thus, he became the fastest Kiwi bowler to 50 Test wickets in terms of the number of innings taken to reach this feat. Jamieson reached the milestone in just 9 innings, bettering the records of former speedsters Shane Bond (12) and Chris Martin (13).