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India Vs England, 3rd Test: Ben Stokes Calls For DRS To Do Away With Umpire's Call

England captain Ben Stokes made the comment after opener Zak Crawley was dismissed LBW against Jasprit Bumrah, with the ball projected to be grazing the leg-stump. The visitors lost the third Test in Rajkot by 434 runs - India's biggest margin of victory ever by runs

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Captain Ben Stokes reacts while fielding on the second day of the third cricket Test match between India and England in Rajkot. Photo: AP/Ajit Solanki
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Suffering a defeat as enormous as the one India inflicted on them in Rajkot can't be easy. The scars of the 434-run loss are likely to linger in English minds for a while, but their talismanic captain Ben Stokes is hopeful that his team will forget what happened in the third Test and head to Ranchi afresh. (As It Happened | More Cricket News)

Two more matches remain in the five-game rubber, which began with the visitors winning the first Test in Hyderabad by 28 runs, but losing the next two encounters by major margins.

Putting things in perspective after the crushing loss, Stokes said: “I spoke before I came out here and said weeks like this are hard. Losing games for England isn't where you want to be but games — personally, I think — (are) won or lost in the head.

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“I just made sure that all the emotion, all the disappointment there would be in that dressing room now, make sure it stays here. We've got two games left and all I'm thinking about as a captain is winning this series 3-2.”

England’s Bazball-minded approach to Test cricket will not be tampered with despite the back-to-back heavy defeats, Stokes said at the post-match press conference. “No, not at all. Our batting line-up is full of international-class players. We give them the freedom to play what’s in front of them. You can see the difference in the two teams’ approaches playing out in India,” he said.

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“The last two games, India have put runs on the board, the way they want to operate. We have been able to do it at times, but have not been able to sustain it for as long as we’ve wanted to,” the southpaw added.

The all-rounder said the umpire's call on DRS should be scrapped, after England opener Zak Crawley was dismissed leg before wicket against Jasprit Bumrah, with the ball projected to be grazing the leg-stump.

Stokes and England head coach Brendon McCullum also spoke with match referee Jeff Crowe about it.

“We just wanted some clarity around Zak’s DRS when the images came back. The ball is quite clearly missing the stump on the replay. When it gets given to the umpire's ball and the ball’s not actually hitting the stumps, we were a bit bemused,” Stokes said.

“We just wanted some clarity from the Hawkeye guys. It came back saying the numbers, or whatever it is, it was saying that it was hitting the stumps but it was the projection that was wrong.

“I don’t know what that means. Something’s gone wrong — it’s not me blaming that on what’s happened here, like I didn’t last week. It’s just… what’s going on?” he added.

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The Durham cricketer said the dismissal of batting mainstay Joe Root on the third day morning — a reverse ramp shot off Bumrah which went straight to Yashasvi Jaiswal at second slip — was the turning point in the game.

“Because he got out to it, definitely (it) was a turning point. Joe Root has scored nearly 12,000 runs, we can leave the decision-making and ‘why’ with Joe,” Stokes said.

“I can understand why there would be frustration around that because of how good a player Joe is.

“Jasprit Bumrah has got him out a couple of times this tour early on. And I thought Joe was looking really, really good at the crease, and he sensed that as a time to put something different back onto Jasprit and make him maybe think about something,” Stokes said.

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Stokes further added that he did not feel like he was the right man to question Root about the choice of the shot. “Because what that shot does for Joe is it makes fields change, makes bowlers' mindset change towards him. He got out to it, and it’s not a shot you necessarily see Test match players playing.

“But look, who am I to question a guy who has 30 Test match hundreds, nearly 12,000 Test match runs? I think he knows what he’s doing,” he explained.

Stokes heaped praise on India’s double centurion Yashasvi Jaiswal, who has scored 545 runs in three Tests so far. “He has been a great player to watch. I enjoy watching good players play even if it is against me. Early on he took his time and when he sensed his opportunity to go out, he did. He has had a fantastic start to his career,” the England skipper said.

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(With PTI inputs)

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