Nottingham, Aug 1: A spineless India today crashed to one of their heaviest defeats in terms of runs in the lop-sided second cricket Test against England, who have now become serious contenders for the world number one tag by taking an unassailable 2-0 lead in the series here.
Set a daunting target of 478 for victory, India's famed batting line-up collapsed like a pack of cards to be bundled out for 158, losing the game by a humiliating 319 runs with an entire day to spare.
The Indians had to blame themselves for the drubbing as they allowed the hosts to wriggle out of a tight situation on the opening day and then frittered away a good position while batting in the first innings. From then, the visitors could never really get back into the game.
Only Sachin Tendulkar provided some resistance with a gritty 56 that came of 86 deliveries, while most of the other batsmen sucumbed tamely on a Trent Bridge track which still appeared good for batting.
Apart from Tendulkar, no other Indian top-order batsmen could manage double digit scores with off-spinner Harbhajan Singh being the second best run-getter with a quickfire 46 that came off 44 balls.
Tim Bresnan, who struck a valuable 90 with the bat in the second innings, turned out to be the wrecker-in-chief for England with figures of five for 48, while James Anderson (3/51) and Stuart Broad (2/30) provided able support from the other end.
Earlier, resuming at the overnight score of 441 for six, England added another 103 runs from 19.2 overs before being bowled for a massive 544.
After the initial exploits of Ian Bell (159), Kevin Pietersen (63) and Eoin Morgan (70), the seventh wicket pair of Matt Prior (73) and Bresnan (90) added salt to India's injury by stitching 119 runs of just 20 overs.
Praveen Kumar was the most succesful Indian bowler in England's second essay, scalping four wickets for 124 runs while Ishant Sharma (2/131) and S Sreesanth (2/135) snarred two wickets apiece.
England now need to maintain their 2-0 margin in the series to displace India as the number one Test team while India will have to reduce the margin to less than two to maintain their number one status. ICC's Test rankings are announced after the series.
India's biggest defeat in terms of runs had come against Australia at Nagpur in 2004-2005 when they had lost by a huge margin of 342 runs.
However, against England this was India's biggest defeat in terms of runs, surpassing 247-run loss at Lord's in 1990.
India had earlier lost the first Test at Lord's by a huge 196 runs.
The two teams now travel to Birmingham for the third Test which begins at Edgbaston on August 10. PTI