- India’s Cheteshwar Pujara and Murali Vijay resumed Day 3 of third Test against Australia at 120/1 in Ranchi.
- Vijay and Pujara strung a partnership of 102 runs.
- Pat Cummins dismissed Virat Kohli for just 6 runs.
- Pujara scored his 11th Test century in 214 balls.
India End Day 3 at 360/6
Cheteshwar Pujara batted the entire day and remained unbeaten on 130 at the end of day three of the third Test against Australia on Saturday. The Gujarat batsman’s 11th Test hundred helped India reduce the first innings deficit to 91 runs.
The Australian bowlers bowled brilliantly on the flat wicket in Ranchi. Particularly, Pat Cummins, who used the short ball to good effect and returned with figures of 4/59 in his comeback match.
India will hope to get to Australia’s total on day four and then see if they can force a win from there.
Currently, the match is evenly poised.
Pujara and Saha Take India Past 350
Pujara and Saha take India past 350 with a fine partnership of 24 runs. They have brought down the deficit to below 100 now. The duo will have to add another 50 runs at least if India want to get close to Australia’s first innings total.
India: 353/6 after 127 overs.
Fourth Wicket For Cummins
Pat Cummins has managed to get another wicket with the short ball. Ravichandran Ashwin couldn’t find a way to get away from it and gloved the ball to Matthew Wade behind the stumps.
The umpire turned down the appeal of the Australians first, but Steve Smith and company were convinced it was out and went for a review.
The replays showed that Ashwin gloved the ball and he went back to the pavilion for just three runs.
India: 328/6 after 116 overs.
1st innings lead tangibly & psychologically imp for both teams. Aus edging towards this with Ashwin's wicket. Superb fast bowling by Cummins— Cricketwallah (@cricketwallah) March 18, 2017
Pat Cummins turning the game Australia's way. Good selection. In India pace through the air always a good option— Harsha Bhogle (@bhogleharsha) March 18, 2017
Nair Bowled Through The Gates
Josh Hazlewood bowls out Karun Nair through the gates! The ball reverse swings into the Karnataka batsman and goes through the big gap between bat and pad.
He goes for 23 runs. Ravichandran Ashwin walks in.
India: 320/5 after 108 overs.
India Take Tea at 303/4
Cheteshwar Pujara owned another session of the Test match! He remains not out at 109 runs with Karun Nair, who is on 13 at tea.
Australia got two big wickets during the session – Virat Kohli (6) nicked a delivery to Steve Smith at second slip and Ajinkya Rahane (14) gloved one to Matthew Wade behind the stumps.
India trail Australia by 148 runs.
Pujara has put India into a decent position at tea. With a bit of batting to come, should back themselves to cross 451. If so,pressure on Oz— Harsha Bhogle (@bhogleharsha) March 18, 2017
Pujara’s 11th Test Century
Pujara drives Cummins through the off-side and gets to his 11th Test century (214 balls, 14 boundaries) with a boundary! While the big guns have tumbled around him, Pujara has concentrated hard and kept going and going.
He assessed the conditions quickly and is taking on every loose delivery bowled at him.
India: 281/4 after 94 overs.
Cheteshwar Pujara record number of runs this first-class season!— Mohandas Menon (@mohanstatsman) March 18, 2017
Pujara has now scored a century in the maiden Test of 4 venues - Indore, Rajkot, Vizag & Ranchi - most by any player in history.#IndvAus— Deepu Narayana (@deeputalks) March 18, 2017
Rahane Loops a Catch
Ajinkya Rahane just helps along the short ball bowled by Pat Cummins to Matthew Wade behind the stumps and gets out for just 14 runs.
The fast bowler is having a dream comeback so far.
Every wicket lost due to a poor shot on a flat wicket like the one in Ranchi, will hurt the Indian team twice as hard!
India in a spot of bother here, Karun Nair walks in.
India: 276/4 after 92 overs.
With that shot Rahane has ensured that a lot of bouncers will be coming his way.... #IndvAus— Aakash Chopra (@cricketaakash) March 18, 2017
Cummins Gets the Big Fish!
Virat Kohli’s poor form in the Test series continues. He nicks a delivery off Pat Cummins and Steve Smith takes a sharp catch at second slip.
Kohli was looking very comfortable at the crease until he went for an expansive drive. He walks back to the pavilion for 6 runs. India lose their third wicket.
Virat has scores of 0,13, 12, 15 and 6 in this series. This is Kohli’s first lean patch in two years!
India: 226/3 after 81 overs.
Whatever else, Aus haven't allowed @imVkohli's bat to boom yet in three Tests. Big achievement considering Kohli's form this season— Cricketwallah (@cricketwallah) March 18, 2017
Pujara Scores 50; India Cross 200
Pujara drives O'Keefe on the off-side for a boundary and brings up his 15th Test fifty (155 balls, 7 boundaries). He played a gritty innings of 92 runs in the second innings of the Bangalore Test, can he get to the three-figure mark here?
Virat Kohli is comfortable but taking his time to score runs at the other end. He and Pujara have helped India cross 200.
India: 206/2 after 75 overs.
Vijay Falls For 82; India Take Lunch at 193/2
Murali Vijay, who batted brilliantly for his 82 runs, steps out complacently and gets stumped to Steve O'Keefe. Vijay was well on his way to another century, but unfortunately it was not to be today.
If Vijay would have just looked to defend all deliveries in the last over before lunch, India would have been in a fantastic position.
Pujara and Vijay completed another 100-run partnership, but it could have been a much bigger stand.
Nevertheless, now, the focus will be on Virat Kohli, who is padded up and raring to go!
India: 193/2 after 70.4 overs.
Vijay's wicket on stroke of lunch opens up window of opportunity for Aus. India bat deep but runs & time of the essence.Intriguing situation— Cricketwallah (@cricketwallah) March 18, 2017
Pujara and Vijay Up the Ante
Cheteshwar Pujara and Murali Vijay have decided to up that ante in the last few overs. The duo have smashed at least one boundary in the last four overs!
The Indian batsmen are completely set on the crease and are cruising to a big score.
They have added 87 runs to India’s total so far.
India: 178/1 after 67 overs.
Australia Lose Both Their Reviews
O'Keefe hits Pujara on his pads and the Australians go up for a huge appeal. The umpire turns them down and Steve Smith decides to go for a review.
The replays show that Pujara inside-edged the ball onto his pads. The umpire’s decision stays and Australia have lost both their reviews with nine more Indian wickets to go.
India have both their reviews in their hands.
India: 149/1 after 59 overs.
Murali Vijay Scores 50
After playing out innings of 10 and 2 at Pune, Murali Vijay is back in business with a gritty fifty in his 50th Test. He brings up his 15th Test fifty in 129 balls.
Cheteshwar Pujara and Murali Vijay have added 13 runs in the first ten overs of the day. The Australians have kept them on their toes and the Indian batsmen have responded well with their defensive technique.
India: 133/1 after 50 overs.
If you are worried about whether Virat Kohli will bat or not, stop worrying! The Indian skipper is wearing his whites and padded up, which means he will come out to bat very soon.
In all probability, Kohli may walk out to bat on his regular batting position (number four).
India vs Australia, Day 3, 3rd Test
Welcome to the coverage of day three of the third Test between India and Australia from Ranchi.
Day two of the match belonged completely to the batsmen. First, Steve Smith’s unbeaten 178 propelled Australia to a score of 451, then KL Rahul’s 67 runs, helped India reduce the first innings lead to 331 runs.
Looking at the wicket at Ranchi, another day of runs is expected today.
Here’s what our cricket expert Nishant Arora had to say in his review of the second day’s play.