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Last Updated: Saturday, 11 March 2006, 12:31 GMT
England recover after Kumble feat
Second Test, Mohali, day three (close):
India 149-4 v England 300

Anil Kumble
Kumble savours the moment as he ousts Harmison, his 500th victim
Andrew Flintoff took the key wicket of Sachin Tendulkar and Yuvraj Singh fell late on as India finished day three 151 behind at 149-4 in the second Test.

Rahul Dravid, who shared an obdurate 78 with Wasim Jaffer, struck his 41st Test fifty and remained undefeated on 61.

Earlier, Anil Kumble passed 500 wickets as England were dismissed for 300.

After Flintoff (70) and Geraint Jones (52) shared their fourth Test century stand, Kumble polished off the innings with three wickets in four deliveries.

With openers Wasim Jaffer and Virender Sehwag both already back in the pavilion, Mahendra Dhoni was unbeaten on 12, needing to show Dravid further support on Sunday.

After a 40-minute delay to the start because of heavy overnight rain, Flintoff survived a scare on 30, when a thick edge off Kumble bounced out of Dravid's palm at first slip.

He's been a champion, an absolute match-winner; he doesn't give up on any surface
Sourav Ganguly

Jones looked all at sea in the early stages against Kumble, who caused constant problems with his clever variations and some turn, persuading Dravid to wait 10 overs before taking the new ball.

Having not added to his overnight seven, Jones was trapped by a googly but umpire Simon Taufel gave him the benefit of the doubt.

Spinner Piyush Chawla was introduced 50 minutes before lunch but was shown little mercy, Flintoff clipping him away for a boundary off his third delivery and launching him for two sixes.

The second was the all-rounder's 68th Test six, which eclipsed Ian Botham's England record.

There's plenty of time left and there's a lot left in this pitch
Steve Harmison

With Jones confidently sweeping Harbhajan from outside the off stump to the boundary and taking two fours in an over from Chawla, the England batsmen looked in command.

But Flintoff pushed back firmly at Patel, who took his second caught and bowled of the innings, pushing the ball up and taking it at the second attempt.

After lunch, the introduction of Kumble brought a rapid end to the innings.

Jones was bowled when the firmness of the new ball resulted in his defensive shot spinning back onto the stumps.

Andrew Flintoff
Flintoff began to find his touch with some superbly struck shots

Harmison was trapped in front first ball for Kumble's magic 500, and Panesar lasted only one ball longer before edging to slip.

Sehwag made a typically fluent start to the India innings, taking two fours from Hoggard's second over.

But in the next he was surprised by an impressive lifting ball from Harmison, which caught the glove.

India's two most defensive batsmen took root, however, Jaffer surviving on on five when Jones was unable to hold a difficult chance at full stretch to his left.

Flintoff brought himself into the attack after 11 overs and immediately found dramatic movement off the wicket.

In only his second Test, Panesar again showed impressive control, bowling unchanged for virtually the entire final session.

He ripped one past Dravid's defensive push and next ball caught the leading edge.

Although he could not dislodge the captain, he dismissed Jaffer, fooling him in the flight and creating a simple catch for Flintoff, shrewdly placed at short cover.

Harmison and Flintoff both hit the 90mph mark in the final session and Tendulkar was beaten by one that climbed up at him, caught the shoulder of the bat and flew high to second slip.

Yuvraj looked intent on scoring some quick runs but he fell in dramatic fashion to Matthew Hoggard with nine overs of the day remaining.

Bell, who had taken a fearful smack on the back of the neck as he tried to take evasive action from a Yuvraj sweep, took off at cover and clutched a memorable one-handed catch to his left.

It was another success for the captaincy of Flintoff, who brought back Hoggard for just one over, and the wicket left England in good spirits going into the fourth day.

Flintoff and Harmison were still charging in at full throttle in the final overs, but Dhoni underlined his threat by stroking both for four.

Interview: England fast bowler Steve Harmison



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