BOWLED 'IM! Anderson does it with the final wicket of the series! Middle stump is flattened! Nip-backer, through a lackadaisical defence, rattling the woodwork - just like Test wicket No1 - and Anderson becomes the most prolific fast bowler in history as England seal victory by 118 runs and take the series 4-1. How's that for a cherry on top of the summer?
6.15pm: [Wipes eyes] Well, what a series - what a summer - we've had. The No. 1 Test side came with hopes of a first series win in England since 2007; they depart having played their part in a rollicking contest, one which swung back and forth from Birmingham all the way to London. England had already sealed the series, of course, and maintained their unbeaten record at home stretching back to 2014, but there were unforgettable scenes at The Oval this past week, as a Test great signed off. Alastair Cook took his leave with a bewitching farewell hundred, finishing just as he had started against India all those years ago; and then his great mate, James Anderson, surpassed Glenn McGrath with the final ball of the series. No wonder there was some blubbing during the presentations. How do we sum all that up? Well, Al Muthu's report will tell the tale of a bristling final day, in which Rahul and Pant threatened to steal the show, and our team on the ground- George, Mel and Nagraj - will be bestowing post-play gifts throughout the evening. The series is done, Cooky is done, we are done, but Test cricket most certainly isn't. Thanks for all your comments throughout the Tests, from myself, Miller and Monga, as well as Gnasher, KK, Al and Varun, the scorers, Thilak, Raghav, and everyone else involved over the last few weeks. It's been emotional... Cheerio!
5.50pm: Presentations time, and Alastair Cook is named Man of the Match, to general giddy delight: "Most amazing week, one you couldn't have scripted. Just been amazing, great to contribute to an England win, and win the series 4-1, and also a great game of cricket, to go into the last session of the last day with all four results possible, great advert for Test cricket. Been great moment, sad moments, when it's been tough, test cricket shows how hard it is, turn up needing seven wickets but it goes right to the end. I leave with great memories. Amazing, it was a selfish thing to be standing there while everyone cheering, and then to see Jimmy pass Glenn McGrath's record was brilliant. That was the hardest bit, him and Broady are the ones I've played the most with, to know I'll never stand at slip and drop another catch off them is sad. We've lived in each other's pickets for 12 years. Been a privilege to play with England;'s greatest cricketer, no disrespect to any other guys, his skills to do it time and time again, you almost take it for granted, that's he's going to hit a length. The game was a little bit tight, but he didn't miss his length once. The amount of hard work, the pressure and strain, I won't miss that. But you miss the highs and the rewards, playing with this team, be great to see how they develop. This week can't be beaten, I can walk away with my head held high."
Sam Curran is named England's Man of the Series: [Gone any better?] "Not really to be honest, nice to be involved in a great series, luckily it came off in some situations, great to win 4-1 and send Cooky off that way. Trying to keep it as natural as possible, a great learning curve, played only five games, but playing with Jimmy, Broady, pretty awesome, after growing up watching them the sofa. Consistency is the main thing, don't want to look too far ahead take it one game at a time and keep contributing. [Performance at Edgbaston?] Do it once and you get the belief, but it was my third game I just wanted to contribute to the team, a great confidence boost."
India captain Virat Kohli: [Rahul and Pant] "Credit has to go to both those young guys for stepping up on this stage. From three wickets down, it take guts. It might not show in the scoreline but both sides played in great spirit. That was an example of two guys not giving up and entertaining the crowd. This is probably the revival of Test cricket and shows what it means to us, a great advert for Test cricket. We didn't speak about the result, we just wanted to go out and see what happened, waiting and watching, things can change very quickly. That's the beauty of this format. Take nothing away from those two guys, especially someone like Rishabh who's come in and shown grit and determination. We certainly have the belief. It was a great preview of what's in store for him. [Regrets?] Definitely think we will sit down and think about, if we had taken those opportunities, we missed quite few. When both teams are going for wins, you can have a result that looks like that [4-1], they don't go for draws. They played fearless, you hardly have draws in these tense series and that's what the scoreline shows. I'm not saying it wasn't a fair scoreline, because they played better than us, but we can take a lot of heart and apply lessons to how we play Test cricket. [Difference between sides?] There's a reason why we voted for Sam as MoS, he attacked with the bat and with the ball, and made important contributions. It takes character for someone to come in and play like that. He put England in front in those important Test matches. [Health of Test cricket?] First and foremost there should be exciting pitches, and both teams should play for the win. Fans come to watch teams be competitive, and I think that is important for the format. Just one word for Alastair, you've had a great career, for everything you've done, we wish you all the best for the future."
England captain Joe Root: "Very gratifying, a very tough series, India played some exceptional cricket and some special stuff from our guys as well. Really shows Test cricket is in a special place. [Rahul-Pant stand] Those two guys batted exceptionally well, got them in a position where every result was possible, credit to India for playing in that manner and credit to our lads for standing up at the end there. [Cook and Anderson] Alastair has been an exceptional player for such a long period of time, a huge part of our dressing room, he sets the standard and his reception in this game has been fitting. To achieve what Jimmy has achieved to date has been unbelievable, and the scary thing is he believes he's got a couple of years left, in my opinion he's bowling the best he's ever been. We're growing all the time as a team, got a lot learning to do but to perform as we have in this series is great."
5.40pm: Let's take a moment to consider India's contribution to this match, and the series as a whole. KL Rahul and Rishabh Pant, with buccaneering hundreds on the final day, gave India a chance of getting somewhere near 464 - which is incredible when you think they were 2 for 3 yesterday evening. That double-century stand put England's celebrations on ice, and it took a wünderball from Adil Rashid to flip the game back around. After that, you felt there would probably only be one winner, and Anderson's moment was a fitting finale. But a 4-1 defeat feels tough on India, who fought as hard as any touring team in this country over recent years, and were only outclassed in one of the five Tests.
Here's Naseef, on a suitably magnanimous note: "What a match for Cook and this series to end on!! The Indians should keep their heads high, they stayed to their word and kept fighting till the end!! But it was all about Cook and he signs off in style and with a win!! #ThankYouChef"
"Farewell Mr. Cook, enjoy your family and your retirement," cheers Jon. "We won't miss you (much) - an Australian"
"Poor Mick Jagger !! This match saw the maximum number of centuries in the series.. By how much more is he poorer now?" At a quick calculation, Arunabh, I make it about £190,000. But that will be more than compensated by the warm glow inside
5.30pm: Ovations on ovations at T'Oval. Anderson gets an embrace from Alastair Cook, and holds up the ball to the crowd. They don't know who to applaud more, but it is Cook who the focus falls on as he walks up the steps to the dressing room for the last time. After 161 Tests, a century in his final innings, and a victory in the last session to put a seal on the series, Alastair Cook can head off into retirement feeling pretty chuffed.
Here's James Anderson, talking to Ian Ward: "Happy that Cooky was on the field to see that wicket, it's been a tough week. When they were building the partnership it was looking like they would get close, my job was just to hold an end. Thankfully we took the new ball and gave me a chance to get the wicket. [Cook's finale] He's my best mate. He's been brilliant, just to be there for me all the time... " At this point, Anderson starts laughing, but it seems likely that it was to stop him tearing up. Anderson and Cook, England's leading wicket-taker and Test run-scorer, have lined up together for the last time - and you can understand the emotions sloshing around.
*Gulp* Where's my hanky?
shortish and this zips through past the shoulder of the bat
straight line, curling a touch as Shami flicks across the line towards fine leg - but they don't run
Cheers around the ground, geeing Anderson up. Not that he needs it. Into the 14th over of this spell...
So, Anderson will get a final crack at this. Surely, if the scriptwriters are paying attention, this Test should end with c Cook b Anderson
another wide-ish ball, again Bumrah props forward and leaves... Deliberate from Curran?
pitched up wide of off stump, leans out and lets it go
Jasprit Bumrah, the arch blocker, out at No. 11. Short leg and leg slip
perfect line, drags him out, kisses the edge - Jadeja's a goner! Bairstow grabs this one tumbling to his left, Curran leaps and punches the air, India are nine down! And the opportunities for Anderson to go past McGrath are dwindling, too
pitched up, touch too straight and that's whipped through midwicket, there's no one out there and it'll trundle for four
length ball, shaping away in the corridor, left alone this time
Curran buzzes in like a humming bird armed with a samurai sword, curves one past the outside edge as Jaddu comes across
Thanks, Sid. Okay, folks, it's the final hour (or so) of the Test summer. Roll up, roll up, come grab a slice. Can India hold out for a draw (only the fourth in England over the last five years)? Will James Anderson go past Glenn McGrath? Is Joe Root going to pull a crowd-pleasing move and let Alastair Cook have a bowl to finish things off...? It's been a remarkable series, something unpredictable but in the end it's right. We hope you've had the time of your life
5.18pm Guys, we are into the final mandatory hour of this epic series. I am done. Alan Gardner will call the rest of it. Just a reminder. When the final hour begins, after this drinks break, time will be recorded and we will have either 15 overs or one hour, whichever elapses later. All the best with those heart rates. I have had a ball. Take it away, Monty
Jadeja manages to farm the strike now. Flicks this away with the wrists, past midwicket
inside edge. It's not written in the stars for Anderson, I think. Loose drive from Jadeja. Gets an inside edge past the stumps. Desperately unlucky
More fielders come in to deny him the single now
on a length, on off, holds its line, defended
slight swing back in from around off. Jadeja plays it late and defends
on a length, on off, angling away, left alone
full, outside off from over the wicket, defended solidly
In walks Mohammed Shami, but Jadeja is on strike
Given caught at the wicket but Ishant has reviewed it immediately. Again that swinging ball that nips away after pitching. Too much for the tailender. On a length, just outside off, Ishant covers the swing, but the ball leaves him and takes a thin outside edge, UltraEdge confirms. The first replay was not conclusive, but technology leaves no doubt. Dharmasena has eked out another unsuccessful review
tries the really full lbw ball, but Ishant keeps it out again. Big applause for him
Have only respect for Ishant's spirit. Will Shami take a leaf out of that book? Will he be required?
wide length ball, left alone. No swing
swing back in, this ball has lbw written all over it until Ishant brings the bat down in time. This is such a remarkable effort by the injured Ishant. Never a shirker
Some wag near us is chanting "Ooh aah, Glenn McGrath. I said ooh aah Glenn McGrath!" Greeted with quite a few chuckles. They want this record.
full, middle and leg, Jadeja looks to play to leg, the ball moves, takes the leading edge through point
Broad and Moeen are not even on the field
|Kennington Oval, London|
|Toss||England, elected to bat first|
|Player Of The Match|
|Player Of The Series|
|Series result||England won the 5-match series 4-1|
|Match number||Test no. 2318|
|Hours of play (local time)||11:00 start, Lunch 13.00-13.40, Tea 15.40-16.00, Close 18.00|
|Match days||07,08,09,10,11 September 2018 - day (5-day match)|