England pile on 537 in 1st India Test


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Ben Stokes has ridden his luck to hit the third century in England's 537 before the tourists' bowlers quickly discovered how hard it might be to take 20 Indian wickets for victory in Rajkot.

Joe Root, the first of England's centurions, projected at close of play on day one that this first Test of five might go into fast-forward as the pitch begins to deteriorate.

But there was no obvious sign of an early start to that yet as India's reply reached 0-63 in a shortened evening session on Thursday.

Moeen Ali (117) needed just a single to add his hundred to Root's, and duly scampered it from the third ball of the morning.

Then Stokes (128), who shared a damaging sixth-wicket stand of 99 in just 21.1 overs with Jonny Bairstow, made sure England built on their encouraging position.

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