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Ishant Sharma rips through England as India take control at Edgbaston

The India paceman took three wickets in one over either side of lunch.

England stuggled to set India a challenging victory target in the first Specsavers Test at Edgbaston as Ishant Sharma ripped through their middle order.

Ishant swung the ball extravagantly and took three wickets in one over either side of lunch.

England lost Jonny Bairstow (28) and Ben Stokes (6) before the interval and Jos Buttler two balls after it as Ishant claimed his fourth wicket to reduce the hosts to 87 for seven – a lead of 100.

Sam Curran and Adil Rashid rode their luck in an unbroken eighth-wicket partnership of 44, but the pair had extended the advantage to 144 when bad light forced the players off at 2.30pm.

England batsman Dawid Malan trudges off after being dismissed at Edgbaston (Nick Potts/PA)

Curran (30 not out) escaped on 13 when he slashed hard and low past Shikhar Dhawan at first slip.

Rashid (15 not out) was also on 13 when Dhawan dropped an easier opportunity off Umesh Yadav.

England’s problems began quickly in the morning session as Ravi Ashwin removed Keaton Jennings (8) and captain Joe Root (14) with Lokesh Rahul taking smart catches close to the bat.

Ishant then ruined England’s attempt to rebuild when Dawid Malan edged to gully for 20 before Bairstow’s dismissal sent the innings into a tailspin.

Before the start of play, Virat Kohli was said to have had an “informal chat” with match referee Jeff Crowe, who reminded the India captain of his responsibilities after his controversial celebration of Root’s dismissal on Thursday.

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