After winning the second Test match in Melbourne by 8 wickets, India have levelled the four-match series 1-1. After Pujara and Agarwal lost their wickets, Gill and Rahane maintained their cool as India chased off a seventy-course racket for Day 4 boxing trials. Mohammed Siraj had two; Ashwin had one, while Pat Cummins had been excluded by Bumrah while India had bowled Australia 200 in the 2nd Melbourne trial. To win the test and level the spectrum, India has to score 70 runs. Siraj got rid of Cameron Green’s risky 45. The adamant stand between Cameron Green and Pat Cummins was torn down by Jasprit Bumrah, which he dismissed with a bouncer as India smashed a second new ball on 4th. Even after Umesh Yadav, who made his first breakthrough before he got hurt, was damaged, India rattled Australia with Ashwin and Bumrah in 2nd innings and picked up 6 wickets under the age of a hundred. There seemed to be an Inns Victory, but Cameron Green and Pat Cummins carried Australia to stability at the end of Day 3.
India 326 (Rahane 112, Jadeja 57, Lyon 3-72, Starc 3-78) and 70 for 2 beat Australia 195 (Bumrah 4-56) and 200 (Green 45, Siraj 3-37) by eight wickets
Two wickets’ early loss would have made India glad – and Australia rugged – that it didn’t go three-digit, except that Ajinkya Rahane had never threatened to get furious. It’s three wins in three Tests as captain for him, and nowhere will a player ever gone from such a low to such a high in such a short period.
The lower order in Australia made the last four wickets work for them during the morning sitz, but never could free them from their scoring grasp. Thus, when R Ashwin wrapped the inputs in the morning session with a delayed lunch, the lead stood at 69. The final count of 200 over 103.1 was their slowest home-ground test innings since 1986, and they only managed 10 borders and it was their first home test since 1988 against West Indies and the MCG, when they didn’t run a single half-century.
Australia had just two runs ahead and Cummins and Cameron Green stood before the second fresh ball, 16 runs in the 14 overalls. The tougher ball was the breakthrough, as Jasprit Bumrah rebelled Cummins, but the fact that India wasn’t battling the remainder of the campaign further exposed Australia’s problems.
In just three test matches, Rahane has captained India and claimed them all. He’s just the second Indian skipper to be the captain after MS Dhoni for the first three test matches.
“Pretty disappointed. We played some poor cricket, sloppy cricket for a major part of the game. Credit to India, they forced us into mistakes with the bat, ball and also on the field. And when you do that against a quality team, it costs you. But again, need to credit India as they put us under pressure. We have issues with the batting and need to get it sorted,” Paine said at the ceremony
India returned the day with an 82 wickets leading five, but the slip of Ajinkya Rahane (112), which contributed to a new slump for 326, resulted in Australia leading to 131 runs. The 57-score score of Ravindra Jadeja. In return, Umesh Yadav sent Joe Burns back with a beauty and hobbled away from the wounded calf. In the final session to reduce Australia by 99 for six, Jasprit Bumrah, Ravichandran and Mohambmed Sirah were granted a wicket piece before Jadja wiped Matthew Wade and Tim Paine. Cameron Green and Pat Cummins set their heads down, ensuring that India battles again, taking Australia at 133 to six stumbling blocks. Two runs lead India.