Needing some batting time under his belt, Ajinkya Rahane then walked to the crease and saw India safely to tea. Afterwards though, it was surprising to see Rahul still walk out to bat, as Karun Nair (who scored 4 in the first innings) could have done with another hit in the middle.
Perhaps the biggest news of the day, however, came in the pre-lunch session when R Ashwin (0-21) bowled five overs. He overcame the minor finger injury sustained in the nets on Thursday and took the field for the first time in three days, much to the relief of the team management.
Ashwin bowled with decent control on a slow wicket not yet affording turn and looked the best out of three spinners on display. Kuldeep Yadav (0-24) had also bowled in the morning session, his first outing in this game as well.
But Walter (75 runs, 123 balls, 13 fours, 1 six) got stuck into him, hitting three fours and a six in two overs, as he attacked the wrist spinner. It was surprising that the spinners bowled only 11 out of 94 overs India sent down in the Essex innings with Ravindra Jadeja (0-17) not bowling on the final day.
Indian pacers had a good workout on day three as well, with Hardik Pandya (0-54) and Ishant Sharma(3-59) sharing the second new ball. The latter struggled to find his line for the second day running, while Shardul Thakur (1-58) put in some vital horse work.
Mohammed Shami (0-68) generated enough momentum to get into reckoning, should India choose to go in with only two full-time pacers in the first Test, given how Pandya bowled well enough in both innings.
As such, the stand out bowler for India in this game was Umesh Yadav who took 4-35 in 18 overs and always found enough movement to trouble the Essex batsmen. He has made a stern case to be included for the Birmingham Test, but there are far more important questions regarding the batting order and spin combination to be answered