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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

India Closing on Second Test Win

LONDON -- India kept alive its chances of victory against England by taking four wickets before lunch Monday, the final day of the second Test at Lord's.


England was in trouble with a second innings score of 168 for six at lunch, only 85 runs ahead of India's first innings score of 429.


All-rounder Ronnie Irani and first innings century maker Jack Russell were the not out batsman, and England's hopes of drawing this match lie with these two men, all-rounder Chris Lewis, and the two tailenders still to bat. India, having taken the wickets of captain Mike Atherton and No. 3 batsman Nasser Hussain for only 113 runs Sunday evening, needed an early breakthrough Monday morning, and paceman Javagal Srinath delivered the goods.


In his first over of the day, Srinath pitched the ball just short off a length and it darted back into Alec Stewart, who edged the ball onto his stumps after adding just one run to his overnight score of 65.


Graham Thorpe, who scored 89 in England's first innings, joined night-watchman Peter Martin, and slowly pushed the score past the 150 mark.


Indian leg-spinner Anil Kumble, who bowled Atherton on Sunday, went around-the-wicket to the left-handed Thorpe and made a delivery lift sharply. Thorpe couldn't control the rising ball and supplied Vikram Rathore with a catch at short leg, making it 154 for four.


Graeme Hick lasted only 35 dull minutes before seamer Venkatash Prasad also found extra bounce from the Lord's wicket, forcing Hick to edge the rising delivery through to keeper Nayan Mongia with the score 167 for five.


Prasad's next over was a wicket maiden. He ended the two-hour innings of Martin (23) who edged yet another sharp-rising delivery to Rathore at second slip.


Both Prasad and Srinath were getting extra bounce from the pitch in the overcast conditions, and Kumble, who bowled unchanged from the first over of the day, was finding rhythm and form for almost the first time during his English tour.


All three bowlers had two wickets each by lunch. If they can continue cutting through the English line-up, India may have a winning target of less than 200 to chase and to win the Test, leveling the series 1-1.