Ravindra Jadeja said scoring his first overseas Test hundred had given him “confidence” as he praised the batting heroics of India stand-in captain Jasprit Bumrah against England at Edgbaston on Saturday.
Rain meant only 38.5 overs of play was possible on the second day of the Covid-19 delayed final Test, with India already 2-1 ahead in a five-match series.
But in that time India still smashed 78 runs in 11.5 overs, with Jadeja extending his overnight 83 not out to 104 in a first-innings total of 416.
The run-spree also included Stuart Broad conceding a new Test record 35 runs in a single over.
Tailender Bumrah hit Broad for 29 off the bat, with the paceman also sending down five wides and a no-ball hit for six.
Bumrah, captaining India for the first time after regular skipper Rohit Sharma was sidelined by coronavirus, then starred in his more familiar new-ball role by removing all of England’s top three as the hosts slumped to 84-5 at stumps.
Jadeja completed a well-made century after playing a supporting role while Rishabh Pant made a dashing 146 during a partnership of 222 on Friday that rescued India from the depths of 98-5.
“To do it outside India, especially in England to hit a hundred as a player is a really big thing,” spin-bowling all-rounder Jadeja told reporters.
“I can really take some confidence in myself as a player from this, to score a hundred in England especially in swinging conditions, it feels really good.”
Jadeja added Bumrah’s innings was no fluke.
“Whenever Bumrah bats in the nets he takes it seriously,” he said.
“It is not like when he bats he has a casual approach, he puts a price on his wicket.”
- ‘Best defence is attack’ -
England recently started life under their new red-ball leadership duo of captain Ben Stokes and coach Brendon McCullum with a rousing 3-0 series whitewash of Test world champions New Zealand where they repeatedly hit their way out of trouble.
And England great James Anderson forecast more of the same in Birmingham, especially given the in-form Jonny Bairstow and hard-hitting Stokes are now at the crease.
“I’ve got a fair feeling that our best line of defence will be attack,” said Anderson, whose 5-60, the 32nd five-wicket haul of his Test career, was a rare England highlight on Saturday.
“The way Brendon McCullum and Stokesy have gone about the last few weeks, the way we’ve got ourselves out of sticky situations, has been by trying to put pressure back on the opposition. I don’t see this being any different.”
Anderson, meanwhile sympathised with new-ball partner Broad, with the 39-year-old one of three players to share the previous record of 28 runs conceded in a Test over when Australia’s George Bailey went on a charge during a 2013/14 Ashes clash in Perth.
“I thought it was pretty unlucky,” he said.
“Broady stuck to it and on another day, if the luck was with Stuart, an edge probably would have gone to hand.”