LONDON: England captain Joe Root smashed an unbeaten 180 for his second hundred of the series to help his team eclipse India`s first innings total of 364 on day three of the second Test on Saturday. England were all out for 391, taking a slender 27-run first innings lead, riding on Root`s majestic knock on an entertaining day of Test cricket at Lord`s.
The 30-year-old became the second English batsman after Alastair Cook to score 9000 Test runs. His 22nd Test hundred was studded with 18 fours.
It was a significant turnaround for England who were reeling on 23-2 when Root walked out to bat on Friday. Having added 85 runs with Rory Burns to arrest the slide, Root forged a century partnership with Jonny Bairstow to further consolidate England`s position. They batted throughout the morning session, much to the frustration of the Indian bowlers who tried all they could but just could not separate them.
While Root, who scored 64 and 109 in the drawn series opener in Nottingham, maintained his red-hot form, Bairstow regained his mojo with a fighting 57, his first test fifty in 20 innings. Mohammed Siraj (4-94) had Bairstow caught in the slip after cramping him for room as the batsman tried to pull a short-pitched delivery from round the wicket.
Root, who has scored more than 27% of England`s runs in 2021, brought up his hundred with a tight single off Jasprit Bumrah. The 30-year-old took off his helmet and soaked in the applause from the crowd before being embraced by Jos Buttler.
Ishant Sharma (3-69) sent back Moeen Ali and Sam Curran in successive deliveries but Root kept going at the other end.
Realising he was running out of partners, Root played a cheeky reverse ramp shot against Siraj to score a boundary over the slip cordon, and followed it with a second successive four.
James Anderson survived a 10-ball over from Bumrah but lost his off-stump to Mohammed Shami to be the last man out.