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England still fighting in second Test, says Bairstow

Jonny Bairstow

Jonny Bairstow is the world’s leading Test runscorer in 2016

England are “still fighting” in the second Test against India, according to wicketkeeper Jonny Bairstow.

The tourists were bowled out for 255 on day three, before India moved on to 98-3, a lead of 298, with captain Virat Kohli unbeaten on 56.

“We have batted for long periods of time in these conditions previously, so there’s no reason why we can’t do that on day four and five,” said Bairstow.

“The way that Virat played shows that there are runs to be scored.”

England slumped to 80-5 on the second evening before Bairstow, who made 53, shared a sixth-wicket stand of 110 with Ben Stokes.

After Stokes fell for 70, England lost their last four wickets for 30 runs.

“It would have been quite easy for us to capitulate and be all out for 150,” Bairstow told BBC Sport. “The way we applied ourselves and the runs we scored was pleasing.

“We’re still fighting and still hanging in there.”

India turned down the opportunity to enforce the follow-on and were reduced to 40-3 before captain Kohli shared an unbroken 58 with Ajinkya Rahane.

The home side are likely to bat until after lunch on Sunday before leaving England more than four sessions to survive on a surface showing uneven bounce and likely to offer increasing amounts of turn.

“The key will to be play straight,” said Yorkshire’s Bairstow. “We scored more than 500 in the first Test, so we do have the capability.

“It’s exciting, but we know it will be a challenge.”

However, former England captain Michael Vaughan says the tourists’ chances of saving the Test are remote.

Speaking on Test Match Special, Vaughan said: “England will be thinking they need to bat 140 overs in the second innings to get away with a draw.

“I can’t see how they can win. The draw is a possibility but it’s very, very minute.”

Article source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/cricket/38038571