Other Sports Ashwin spins India closer to series whitewash

Ravichandran Ashwin's six-for put India in complete control of the third and final Test with New Zealand as they seek a series whitewash.

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Ravichandran Ashwin's six-for put India in complete control of the third and final Test with New Zealand as they seek a series whitewash.

Having declared on 557-5 on day two, India looked to replicate their superb batting performance with the ball and edge closer to securing a 3-0 margin of victory.

And their whitewash hopes were significantly boosted by a magnificent performance by off-spinner Ashwin, who finished with 6-81 in Indore and also ran out two New Zealand batsmen as the Black Caps crumbled to 299 all out. 

Looking to turn the screw, India closed on 18-0 in their second innings, putting the hosts 276 ahead, but lost Gautam Gambhir retired hurt on six with a shoulder injury.

New Zealand started the day on 28-0 and battled hard in the early stages, openers Martin Guptill (72) and Tom Latham (53) pushing the tourists past 100 without loss.

But Latham's caught-and-bowled exit at the hands of Ashwin prompted a flurry of wickets.

Captain Kane Williamson (8) dragged onto his stumps on his return from illness before Ross Taylor and Luke Ronchi each went for ducks either side of Guptill's run out as Ashwin wreaked havoc.

Jimmy Neesham steadied the ship somewhat as he plundered 11 fours to reach 71, building partnerships of 53 and 52 with BJ Watling (23) and Mitchell Santner (22) - who each fell victim to Ravindra Jadeja (2-80).

But Neesham's admirable effort was ended when he was dubiously given out lbw as Ashwin struck again, Jeetan Patel (18) and Matt Henry (15 not out) adding 23 more runs before Trent Boult's (0) dismissal ended the innings.

Gambhir's unfortunate exit took some of the shine off another excellent day for India but they reached stumps without further loss and Murali Vijay appearing in good form as he struck two boundaries in an unbeaten 11.

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