Bresnan Takes Centre Stage In 319-Run England Win
England 221 & 544 (Bell 159, Morgan 70) beat
India 288 & 158 (Bresnan 5-48) by 319 runs
Second Test, Trent Bridge, day four
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Tim Bresnan scored 90 and then took his maiden five-wicket haul in Tests as England wrapped up a comprehensive 319-run win over India to move into an unassailable 2-0 series lead at Trent Bridge.
They started the day 374 runs ahead, added 103 further runs to set India a mammoth target of 478 and then closed out victory by dismissing the tourists for just 158 in the final innings.
Bresnan fell ten runs short of what would have been a maiden Test century but made up for it with a fine spell later in the day that at one point saw him on a hat-trick when he dismissed Yuvraj Singh (8) and Mahendra Singh Dhoni (0) in consecutive deliveries.
He was unable to emulate his team-mate Stuart Broad, who had taken a hat-trick in India's first inings of 288, but no matter as England had the firepower to once again prevent a star-studded Indian batting line-up - albeit missing two top players in Virender Sehwag and Gautam Gambhir - for less than 300.
Only three players could reach double figures, Sachin Tendulkar briefly raising hopes that he might manage his 100th international century with 56 and 86 balls and both Harbhajan Singh (46) and Praveen Kumar (25) hitting out after the game was long since over as a contest.
England struck quickly and decisively before and after lunch when Broad had Rahul Dravid caught behind by Matthew Prior for six and James Anderson produced a belter of a delivery to send VVS Laxman's off stump cartwheeling. It was a great sight for the fast bowler, but a nightmare for the Indian team to see their two best batsmen on the tour so far back in the pavilion so early.
Abhinav Mukund resisted bravely but he was unable to deal with a barrage of short balls that also accounted for Suresh Raina (1) and Yuvraj as he fended Bresnan uncomfortably to Strauss at slip.
Raina attempted a pull shot but only succeeded in picking out substitute fielder Scott Elston at fine leg after England set the trap and executed it beautifully while Yuvraj gloved to Alastair Cook in close.
Elstone was in the thick of the action, dropping Harbhajan before getting the chance to make amends a few balls later to give Bresnan his fifth wicket.
Tendulkar fell when he offered no stroke to Anderson and was trapped in front, which was the same manner and method of dismissal suffered by Dhoni, whose woeful run with the bat continued.
The final knockings of the game came when Broad, fittingly given his masterful performance with bat and ball throughout the game, ended proceedings when Shanthakumran Sreesanth was bowled without scoring after Anderson had similarly removed Kumar.
England had set up the record run-chase with Bresnan in great form, cutting and driving powerfully on his way to 90 in 118 balls, taking centre stage after Matthew Prior edged Kumar to Dhoni for 73.
Bresnan found support in Broad, who crashed 44 in 32 balls with five fours and two sixes before he was superbly run out by stubstitute Wriddhaman Saha but by then, England were more than far enough ahead.
After Bresnan could only fend a Kumar lifter to Dravid at slip, England were bowled out for 544 when Graeme Swann chipped Sharma to Saha at mid off, who juggled the chance but eventually held on.
India, who outplayed England for the majority of the first two days, having first been rocked by Broad's counter-attack and then his hat-trick were reduced to trying desperately to hold on to their hosts' coat-tails by the conclusion, leaving them much thinking to ahead of the Edgbaston Test, which begins on 10th August, offering both sides time to rest weary and battered bodies.
© Cricket World 2011