(Updates after tea)
Feb. 15 (Reuters) – Virat Kohli produced a batting masterclass on a cornering track, and Ravichandran Ashwin beat fifty unbeaten, as India increased their lead to 416 at tea on day three of the second test against England Monday.
The home side lost five wickets in the morning session, but Kohli collected 96 points with Ashwin to bolster India’s hopes of a series-level victory at MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai.
India were 221-8 at the break with Ashwin at bat on 68 and Ishant Sharma has yet to open his account.
Earlier, Ben Foakes impressed with his glove job on his birthday and was involved in the first three layoffs of the morning session.
England found success in the first round when Cheteshwar Pujara was exhausted for seven years in a bizarre fashion.
After going out to defend a ball, the batter was trying to make his ground when he stuck his bat on the crease and lost his grip. Foakes took the bond off before Pujara could get his footing.
The wicket keeper then pulled a yank to send Rohit Sharma back for 26 on Jack Leach.
India promoted the dangerous Rishabh Pant ahead of Ajinkya Rahane in an attempt to disrupt the spinners, but it made no difference.
Leach and Foakes combined for a second stumping to return Pant for eight and Ollie Pope took a diving hold to return Rahane for 10.
Local captain Kohli put the brakes on his natural game, rarely playing his cover training, in a patient 62 shot before Moeen Ali sacked him for the second time in the game.
Ashwin, who claimed 5-43 in England’s opening innings and is likely to play a key role with the ball later, made his 12th test at fifty at home.