Keaton Jennings completed a gritty debut ton on the second session of the fourth Test in Mumbai, invoking memories of a young Alastair Cook who did the same in Nagpur in 2006 as England finished the second session, in a position of considerable strength at 196/2.
Compared to the first session, the rate of scoring was much slower with the batsmen much more tentative. Joe Root did not last long as Ravichandran Ashwin beat him in flight and Virat Kohli took a smart to dismiss him for 21. But, apart from that, Moeen Ali and Jennings were watchful as India’s spinners were probing. The intended wicket, however, did not arrive for India as Ali and Jennings held on grimly, preferring to block and content in getting singles instead of boundaries.
The other incident of the session happened when umpire Paul Reiffel was hit on the back of his head from a throw to deep. Reiffel immediately went down but thankfully, sat up, despite looking a little dazed. There was a delay of around 10 minutes as Reiffel went off the field, to be replaced by Marais Erasmus. Later, the commentators said that he had been taken to a nearby hospital to get a scan done.
Back to Jennings though. Kohli tried to bait him into getting to his century through big hits but Jennings remained serene. On 96, he hit a delightful reverse sweep to get to a well-deserved century and put England on top.
England 196/2 (Keaton Jennings 103 not out, Alastair Cook 46; Ravindra Jadeja 1/29, Ravichandran Ashwin 1/55) vs India