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England still ahead

KOLKATA – England have moved into a strong position to open up a 2-1 series lead after dominating day three of the third Test at Eden Gardens today.

Although Alastair Cook’s dogged resistance was finally ended in bizarre circumstances – allowing India a foothold back into the match – England finished the day on 509 for 6 to lead by 193.

Cook had seemed on course for a third Test double century but was sent back to the pavilion on 190 after being run out by Virat Kohli.

Cook was caught out of his crease at the non-striker’s end by Kohli’s sharp throw, with the England captain trying to get out of the way of the ball before grounding his bat.

It was the first time Cook had ever been run out in first-class cricket and a desperately sad end to his epic 377-ball innings.

England had overhauled India’s first-innings total of 316 after lunch – with Cook and Jonathan Trott at the helm.However Trott looked increasingly uncomfortable as the pitch began to turn – with Pragyan Ojha finally getting his man for 87.

Trott tried pushing forward to one he could have perhaps left and only succeeded in edging it behind to MS Dhoni.

Following Cook’s departure, Kevin Pietersen and the returning Ian Bell, who missed the second Test win, steadied the ship.

However India were able to wrestle their way back into the match in the final session – with three wickets falling. Bell (5), Pietersen (54) and Samit Patel (33) were all sent back to give the hosts hope, although Matt Prior and Graeme Swann remained defiant – sharing an unbroken seventh-wicket stand of 56.

Bell managed just a sedate five before edging Ishant Sharma to Dhoni not long after the tea interval.

Pietersen had made his way to a confident-looking half-century before he was trapped leg before by a straight one from Ravichandran Ashwin for 54. (Sky)

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