England began Day 4 of the Mohali Test on the back foot, having lost their top four wickets cheaply at the end of Day 3. The morning didn’t begin in the most auspicious of fashions for the visitors as they lost night-watchman Gareth Batty and Jos Buttler quickly to find themselves at 107 for 6.
It was now up to Joe Root and Haseeb Hameed, who came out to bat at Number 7 in the second innings, owing to an injury to ensure their side did not suffer an innings defeat.
The duo put on 46 runs for the 7th wicket before Ravindra Jadeja gave India its most vital breakthrough. Off the 3rd ball of the 66th over, the left-arm spinner got one to rip after pitching. The ball took the outside edge of the bat, and Ajinkya Rahane took an absolute blinder at first slip, plucking it out with his left hand, keeping his balance intact and ensuring that India had their man, before he went to get something huge.
While Rahane has contributed significantly with the bat in this game and this series, he certainly provided everyone with one of the moments of the match on the morning of Day 4 with this effort, and it meant that India ‘s chances of sealing a comfortable win in the Mohali Test went further northwards.
You can watch the video of the dismissal here.
The catch would have also done Rahane’s confidence a world of good, after his poor run of form, which has seen him make 63 runs in 5 innings at an average of 12.60 with a highest score of 26.
Right from the time that he has begun fielding in the slips, Rahane had shown that he possesses a very safe pair of hands and even holds the record for the most number of catches in a Test, when he took eight in an encounter against Sri Lanka in 2015.
At Lunch on Day 4, England found themselves at 156 for 7 with Hameed batting on 13 and Chris Woakes giving him company, unbeaten on 1. They are at present ahead with a lead of 22 runs, and the Indian bowlers will look to dismiss the visitors cheaply post the interval.