500th Wicket Milestone Overshadowed: Ben Duckett’s Explosive Century Steals the Show in Epic India vs. England Battle

On Day II of the third Test at Niranjan Shah Stadium, Ben Duckett stole the spotlight with a fearless century, propelling England to 207/2 in response to India’s 445.

Ben Duckett
Ben Duckett hits century against India in the third test.

In the backdrop of the 2016 series where Ashwin had dominated Duckett, the narrative took a turn on Day II of the third Test at Niranjan Shah Stadium. Ashwin claimed his 500th Test wicket, a monumental achievement, yet it was Ben Duckett’s fearless century that became the focal point.

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Despite the flat and slow pitch, Duckett’s innings of 133 not out showcased a wide array of shots, from slog sweeps to conventional drives, comprising 21 boundaries and a couple of maximums.

Even though the pitch offered variable bounce, Duckett demonstrated exceptional skill and bravery against India’s bowlers. His aggressive approach against Jasprit Bumrah, the pace spearhead, was particularly noteworthy. Pacer Mark Wood, who had the best figures for England in the first innings, commended Duckett’s innings, highlighting his ability to adapt to India’s changing fielding strategies.

Ashwin, known for his competitive spirit, acknowledged Duckett’s prowess, expressing a desire to bowl to him when he was at zero but admiring the special shots played during his century. Despite India breaching the 400-mark thanks to Ashwin’s contribution with the bat, Ben Duckett‘s innings shifted the momentum in England’s favor.

The day started with England already having five runs on the board due to a five-run penalty conceded by India. This penalty was a consequence of Ashwin running on the protected pitch area during the first session of Day II, following a similar warning issued to Jadeja on Day I. This incident added an intriguing subplot to the unfolding drama on the cricket field.

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