Resurrecting the performance of New Zealand's middle order, dealing with the potency of Indian spin and monitoring disquiet over the lack of a Decision Review System and players running on the pitch are all factors which add spice to the fourth day of the third test.

India are on the cusp of a 3-0 clean-sweep. They will resume on 18-0 with a lead of 276 after dismissing the visitors for 299 and disregarding the follow-on.

As the wicket starts to resemble the surface of the Apollo XI moon landing, Ravi Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja will become pivotal in the fourth innings where locals suggest first-class scores over 200 are rare.

Ashwin's off spin continued to dominate with figures of six for 81 giving him 20 wickets at an average of 21 for the series. Jadeja supported him in New Zealand's first innings with two for 80.

"They're world class, especially in their own conditions," said Tom Latham, who made his third half century of the series with 53, as part of a 118-run opening stand with Martin Guptill.


"We've got to stay true to what we believe works on this surface. If you have the right technique and mental state you can score runs, but unfortunately we lost wickets in clumps.

"It's deteriorating and turning more. It's not cracking up much, but there are dust and footmarks for bowlers to work with. They [Ashwin and Jadeja] will be targeting those, so we've got to find a way of rectifying that."

At Kanpur, during his 37th test, Ashwin became the second fastest bowler to 200 test wickets after Clarrie Grimmett.He oozes confidence to a point where he believes he may have solved one of cricket's modern mysteries.

"It's all about getting into a good rhythm, getting through the crease and accelerating. Once I do that, I think I can beat any batsman in the world. I come into a series with a plan. I picked up some clues about Kane [Williamson] the last time he played in India - at Bangalore. He has a tendency to lunge forward."

Ashwin has dismissed Williamson each of the three times he has batted this series. He paid tribute to coach Anil Kumble as the perfect sounding board for his ideas.

"We have good discussions on what we can be doing to different batsmen which we adjust as the day goes on. It was Anil's idea to push the ball wider to Tom Latham and it worked.

"[Elsewhere] our plan was simple - reduce the run rate, cut out the boundaries and create pressure. This outfield is very quick, the balls disappear and that's what happened in the first session when Latham and Guptill batted well."

Marring the action have been reprimands to Jadeja and Murali Vijay for running on the wicket which roughened an already damaged area with their spikes, thus making it more spin friendly.

Latham would not be drawn out of his verbal crease on how deliberate the actions might have been.

"That's out of our hands as players. We've got nothing to do with it.

"Guys are naturally going to walk on the wicket during a game.

"It's up to the umpires, they make the call."

Similarly Jimmy Neesham was given out lbw for 71 to a ball which appeared to be missing off stump. No review meant no debate. Neesham's look of disgust, as he saw a replay in the dressing room, was understandable.

"There was a suggestion it might've been missing but it's out at the end of the day," Latham said. "That's cricket and we've got to take that on board."