London, July 29 ANI | 3 months ago

England batsman Ian Bell returned to his former form with a first hundred after almost a year as the hosts dominated the second day of the third Test against India in Southampton.

Bell made 167; sharing century stands with Gary Ballance and debutant Jos Buttler, who fired away a quick 85 from 83 balls.

When Buttler fell, England declared on 569-7, leaving India 14 overs to bat at the end of the day, The BBC reported.

India struggled with the bat as James Anderson claimed Shikhar Dhawan from the batting pitch, which left the visitors 25-1 and in severe danger of surrendering the 1-0 series lead that they earned after winning the second Test at Lord's.

Bell, like England captain Alastair Cook, was badly in need of a score after passing 50 only four times in his previous 19 Test innings. But, after Cook scored 95 on day one, Bell, who should have been given out lbw to Pankaj Singh on nought, cashed in to deliver a 21st Test ton.

Bell's fluency was matched in the morning session by Ballance, who moved his first-day hundred on to 156.

Ballance was given out caught behind off Rohit Sharma when the ball had missed the bat and hit his back leg, with England gaining some consolation from the fact that the part-time off-spinner was able to find exaggerated turn and bounce, the report added.

(Posted on 29-07-2014)

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