Cheteshwar Pujara acknowledges crowd as he leaves the field after his dismissal during Day 2 of second India-England test match at Wankhade Stadium in Mumbai. PTI
With the four-Test series levelled at 1-1 after India's ploy to prepare a turning track backfired in Mumbai, the hosts will seek to bounce back as they go into the third cricket Test against England here tomorrow with intense pressure on their under-performing star players to deliver before its too late.
After India's humiliating loss in the second Test, the build-up to the Eden match was marked by a pitch row that began with a desperate Dhoni insisting for a rank-turner, which led to the local curator Prabir Mukherjee calling the Indian skipper "immoral and unethical".
To resolve the matter, the BCCI sent East Zone curator Ashish Bhowmick to "assist" Mukherjee. The pitch for the match has drawn a lot more attention because of the controversy and it remains to be seen whether the hosts can put everything behind them and focus on the game.
India have never lost a series to England since 1984-85 when David Gower's team had returned home with a 2-1 win but over the last one year Dhoni and Co. have lost much ground beneath their feet as they have slipped to number 5 in the world rankings from being number one at one stage.
While India's pride will be up for stake, England would look to prove that they are not inept against spin and can win a series on Indian soil as well.
Aided by skipper Alastair Cook's super show with two centuries from two Tests, and the most-destructive Kevin Pietersen showing in the last Test what he is capable of, England had buried India at their own den at the Wankhede, sealing a 10-wicket.
On a pitch that turned from ball one, England showed great resilience to bounce back after their first Test defeat in Ahmedabad, while Indians struggled in all the departments of the game.