Shamed! Empire strikes back, forces India to capitulate tamely in Nagpur Test
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In the last Test against India, England today broke a 28-year-old jinx by achieving a historic series win on Indian soil, leaving the hosts embarrassed with a 2-1 verdict in their favour after the fourth and final match ended in a tame draw here with Indian players virtually without a clue as to how to effect a fightback - they did not seem to harbour even an iota of desperation at the prospect of a humiliating loss.
The last time an English side had defeated India in their own den was way back in 1984-85, under the captaincy of David Gower.
The day belonged to centurions Jonathan Trott (147) and Ian Bell's unbeaten 116 even as the story remained the same for a hapless India who toiled without much success before the match was called off on the final day with England scoring 352 for four.
The hosts needed to take quick wickets to entertain hopes of a win but that did not happen as Trott and Bell batted off the first session to ensure the series triumph for the hosts.
The English players broke into wild celebrations the moment the two sides mutually agreed to a draw at the Green Park stadium. There was a feeling of bonhomie and the tourists hugged each other even as gloom descended on the Indian dressing room.
Bell and debutant Joe Root (20) were at the crease when the stumps were drawn for the final time in the series.
It was a remarkable turnaround from the visitors after the humiliating defeat in the series opener in Ahmedabad a month ago.
England staged a strong comeback in the next match in Mumbai where the hosts were crushed by 10 wickets, and the script was pretty similar in Kolkata -- the venue for the third Test -- where the visitors cruised to a seven-wicket victory at the Eden Gardens.
This is also the first time in the last eight years that India have suffered a Test series defeat at home. Australia beat India 2-1 in 2004-05.
Trott made an obdurate 143 in 406 minutes, hitting 18 fours, while Bell was equally tenacious in making an unbeaten 116 in 383 minutes as the duo dashed the hosts' hopes of a series-levelling win with their 208-run fourth-wicket partnership.
For India, Ravichandran Ashwin took two for 99 while Pragyan Ojha and Ravindra Jadeja picked up a wicket apiece.
The visitors had made 330 in the first innings and the hosts had replied with 326 for nine declared.
Incidentally, just like Alastair Cook and his men have done in this rubber, Gower's outfit too had rebounded after losing the opening Test.
After trailing 1-2 it became a formidable task for India ahead of series decider.
India had a whiff of a chance when they reduced England to 139 for five on the first day, but did not tighten the noose as Root (73) and wicketkeeper Matt Prior (57) led the tourists' revival with a partnership of 103.
And after managing to restrict England to 330, the Indian batting was rocked by the fiery three-wicket burst from James Anderson.
Virat Kohli and captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni led the fightback on day three with a stand of 198.
After conceding a small lead of four runs, India once again allowed England to escape after having them at a shaky 94 for three yesterday when Trott and Bell joined hands to frustrate the Indian attack for more than five hours.
Under Dhoni, the hosts have also suffered their third defeat in four Test rubbers - the 2-0 win over New Zealand in August being the saving grace after the successive 0-4 whitewashes against England and Australia away from home.
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