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Moeen spins England to victory

By Dave Clark

Moeen Ali’s first international five-wicket haul guided England to a comprehensive 266-run victory over India before lunch on the final day of the third Investec Test at the Ageas Bowl.

Spinner Moeen had already removed Cheteshwar Pujara and Virat Kohli last night as India resumed on 118 for four in pursuit of an improbable 455.

The improbable swiftly became the impossible, as James Anderson had Rohit Sharma and Mahendra Singh Dhoni caught behind by Jos Buttler within the first six overs of play - both players falling for six.

Moeen Ali celebrates the dismissal of Bhuvneshwar Kumar

Ajinkya Rahane was the only Indian batsman to offer any serious resistance, making an unbeaten 52, but when Ravindra Jadeja, the last of the recognised batsmen, was bowled for 15 attempting a big drive off Moeen the tourists’ chances of salvaging a draw looked marginal.

Bhuvneshwar Kumar was caught by Anderson at second slip via bat and pad off Moeen for a duck, before the Worcestershire all-rounder bowled Mohammed Shami and Pankaj Singh in quick succession to wrap up the tail and finish with figures of 6-67, as well as completing England's first Test victory for almost a year.

That saw India bowled out for 178, with the last four wickets falling in the space of 40 balls. Anderson took 2-24 as he and Moeen finished with a combined 15 scalps in a match dominated by England from start to finish.

Not a single session went India’s way as first-innings centuries from Gary Ballance and Ian Bell put a the hosts in a commanding position, before Anderson and Moeen did the damage with the ball.

Match scorecard   /   Live ball-by-ball commentary

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Post-Match Reaction

Man-of-the-match James Anderson said:   "It could quite easily be Gary Ballance] or Ian Bell. They batted very well and set the game up for us.

"Then we bowled well today and Moeen was outstanding."

India skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni said:  "I don't think we played good cricket early on.

"There were quite a few soft dismissals, that phase when Jinks (Ajinkya Rahane) got out and a couple of others fell had a big impact on the game.

"And I think last night, that last session had a big impact. We lost a few wickets and a few of them were soft dismissals. Without that session we would have been facing a different game.

"I think we played the fast bowlers well, Moeen bowled well but we let him bowl well. It's important to be positive against spinners."

England captain Alastair Cook said:   "It was a good performance right from day one, I don't think we lost a session. Every single one of the XI has contributed to a great win.

"Getting 570 (in the first innings) was a great start, then we bowled them out, got runs quickly and put pressure on them then got them out again."


Morning Session

12.48- WICKET! Pankaj b Moeen 9; Ind 178 all out – England win by 266 runs! -  Pankaj swipes a couple of boundaries, but misses a straight one and England have their first Test victory since last summer. We’re all square heading to Old Trafford.

12.46pm - FIFTY! Rahane (121b 7x4 0x6) – Rahane crashes Woakes to the cover boundary to bring up a well-earned half-century amidst the carnage at the other end.

12.44pm – Pankaj Singh gets off the mark with a single to huge cheers from the crowd. A Rahane edge drops short of the slips and he then plays and misses at Woakes.

12.31pm- WICKET! Shami b Moeen 0; Ind 154/9 – Five for Moeen! Shami misses a straight one, and England are on the brink. You have to feel for Rahane at the other end.

12.23pm – Mohammed Shami doesn’t look keen on hanging around, attempting a huge swipe that drops in the vacant mid-off region. Rahane doesn’t look too pleased, and goes for a sharp word with his batting partner.

12.20pm- WICKET! Bhuvneshwar c Anderson b Moeen 0; Ind 152/8 – Cook brings Anderson in as second slip, Bhuvneshwar Kumar inside edges a big turner into his pad and it loops straight too him. Great bowling, inspired captaincy.

12.16pm- WICKET! Jadeja b Moeen 15; Ind 152/7 –  Jadeja looked to take the attack to Moeen, but misses an attempted drive to a full one and gets bowled. In Bon Jovi style, England are halfway there.

12.11pm – Rahane, who has again looked the most technically correct of the India batsmen, flicks Moeen off his pad for three and in doing so takes India past 150.

11.57am – Jadeja cuts Moeen for four, and in the next over Rahane runs Chris Woakes to the third man boundary having been beaten outside off by the first ball of the over.

11.43am – The arrival of left-hander Ravindra Jadeja prompts Alastair Cook to introduce off-spinner Moeen Ali in place of Broad at the Northern End. At the other end, Anderson snorts one past Ajinkya Rahane’s outside edge.

11.23am- WICKET! Dhoni c Butter b Anderson 6; Ind 120/6 – An absolute jaffa from Anderson does for Dhoni. Having run the previous ball to third man for four, the India skipper is undone by an away swinger.

11.16am – It takes India until midway through the fourth over of the morning to register a first run with Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s quick single into the off-side becoming two courtesy of an overthrow. Anderson had beaten Dhoni’s outside edge earlier in the over.

11.06am- WICKET! Rohit c Buttler b Anderson 6; Ind 112/5 – The perfect start for England! Rohit hasn’t added to his overnight score when Jimmy Anderson gets one to move away a touch and a feathered edge carries through to Jos Buttler.

11.05am – Stuart Broad gets us underway from the Northern End, and it’s maiden to kick-off the day. Jimmy Anderson continues at the Pavilion End.

Pre-Play News

10.55am – It’s hot once again down on the Costa del Solent, which should offer more encouragement to spinners Moeen Ali and Joe Root. There looks like being a bumper crowd, too, with long queues forming at the gates as England seek a first win in 10 Tests.

10.35am – Second-innings half-centuries from Alastair Cook and Joe Root left India chasing an improbable 445 for victory, and the tourists were reduced to 112 for four at stumps on day four. Root has called for England to press for early wickets , with the hosts needing six today for a series-levelling victory.

10.30am -  Good morning from the Ageas Bowl, where England are pushing for victory against India on the final day.

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