'Silent' Stokes wins mini-battle

After getting Virat Kohli caught behind – a dismissal that left India worried at 204 for five in the post-tea session on Day Two in Mohali - Ben Stokes gestured by placing a hand over his mouth, in an obvious reference to Saturday’s incident between the two.

Ben Stokes (second from right) reacts after dismissing Virat Kohli on Day Two in Mohali.   -  Reuters

If there was ever ‘a battle within a battle’ on Sunday, Ben Stokes was the winner over Virat Kohli.

In the background of Stokes being reprimanded by the International Cricket Committee (ICC) following the verbal spat with Kohli after being dismissed on the first day of the third Test here on Saturday, the England speedster silently hit back at the Indian captain.

>Report: Ashwin rescues India with unbeaten 57

After getting Kohli caught behind – a dismissal that left India worried at 204 for five in the post-tea session - Stokes gestured by placing a hand over his mouth, in an obvious reference to Saturday’s incident.

>Read: 'We stuck to our plans', says Rashid

“This was obviously a big wicket,” said Adil Rashid, the leg-spinner who took three wickets on this day and continued, “We know Kohli is a class player and for Stokes to get him was good. There’s been a bit of friction between them. Ben showed his class.”



Cheteshwar Pujara comments
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Pleased with the way England bounced back after India was 148 for two at tea, Rashid said, “I thought the boys have done well to restrict them to 271 for six. We are still in a good position. It’s a good pitch. If you stick to your plans, you can put the pressure on the batsmen. I don't think we can look too far ahead. We still got four wickets to get. Hopefully, we can come back tomorrow and pick those wickets quickly.”

'England bowled negative lines'

Meanwhile, Cheteshwar Pujara said, “The lines England bowled, in the second session, were a little negative. But I still feel that the way we batted and the way we showed character was good.” Reflecting on the state of the match, the 28-year-old said, “We have recovered very well. We have an advantage because both our all-rounders (R. Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja) are playing. So, tomorrow the first session would be really crucial for us. Our game plan would be very simple. We would look to get a lead of around 75-100 runs. And if they (Ashwin and Jadeja) continue batting, you never know as both of them can bat really well”