Chennai Test: Unlucky KL Rahul misses double ton by a run

KL Rahul and Karun Nair stitched together a crucial 161-run partnership for the fourth wicket to put India in a strong position against England in the fifth Test at Chennai.

KL Rahul missed his maiden Test double ton by a single run on the third day of fifth Test against England on Sunday.

India were 372/4 at the time of Rahul’s dismissal.

The hosts ended Day 3 at 391 for the loss of four wickets with Murali Vijay unbeaten on 17 and Karun Nair holding fort with an unbeaten 71. India are 86 runs behind England with six wickets in hand in Chennai.

Rahul, who brought up his fourth Test century earlier in the day, stood stunned after holing a slower delivery from Adil Rashid at 199. He is the second Indian after former captain Mohammad Azharuddin who missed the landmark score against Sri Lanka in 1986.

He stitched together a crucial 161-run partnership with Karun Nair for the fourth wicket after captain Virat Kohli got out for a low score of 15. With the hosts still 266 runs behind the follow-on mark, Rahul continued to play his natural strokes while Nair played second fiddle. In the process, the latter too brought up his maiden Test fifty.

However, the English bowlers had a disappointing day with Alastair Cook failing to grab a crucial catch at the slips to dismiss Karun Nair when the Karnataka batter edged Jake Ball’s delivery to the first slip. Following quick dismissals of Cheteshwar Pujara (16) and Kohli (15), the visitors had an opportunity to tighten the noose around India.

Resuming the third day from overnight’s score of 60 without loss, India had a solid start with Rahul and Parthiv Patel (71) putting on 152 runs for the first wicket. The Karnataka opener brought up his fourth Test hundred in style, running three off Ben Stokes delivery. It was his first century on home soil. Alas! he could not convert it into a double hundred.

 India have already clinched the five-Test series 3-0. They last won a series against England here in 2008.