Pant, Pujara offer India glimmer of expectation in third Test

January 11, 2021 Sports
An aggressive Rishabh Pant and stoic Cheteshwar Pujara retained India's slim hopes of saving the 3rd Test against Australia alive Monday as the tourists reached lunch in the final day with their go chase reduced to 201.

With the four-meet series locked at 1-1, India resumed at 98-2, still needing an additional 309 works after being set an enormous 407 to win after Australia declared their second innings at tea Sunday on 312 for six.

No team has ever bettered 288 to clinch victory in the fourth innings at the Sydney Cricket Floor, with Australia achieving that tag against South Africa found in 2006.
By the break, India were 206 for three with Pant on 73 and Pujara 41, sharing a threatening 104-operate partnership.

Australia removed openers Shubman Gill for 31 and Rohit Sharma for 52 before stumps on time four, so when Nathan Lyon accounted for captain Ajinkya Rahane found in Monday's second above the finish appeared nigh.

But Pant, who took a nasty blow to his elbow while batting in the primary innings and didn't hold wicket on Sunday, surprisingly came in at number five before Hanuma Vihari and produced some fireworks.

He had zero strapping on the harm elbow and, after settling found in and surviving a missed get by Tim Paine on 3, began going to out, smacking a good four and a good six off Lyon on consecutive balls.

Batting more like it was a Twenty20 match, he then clobbered two even more sixes in a row off Lyon prior to mentioning his third Test 50 off simply 64 balls.

Paine dropped him again on 56, both circumstances off Lyon, misses that could prove costly. Pant scored 159 not out when India previous played a Test in Sydney throughout their 2018-19 tour.
At the other end Pujara, who had resumed on nine, made sure he stuck around, moving bit by bit in support.

India got off to a horror begin when Rahane was out on the fourth ball he faced, failing woefully to increase his overnight four.

Lyon did the damage, beating him with a good turning ball that caught an inside edge and popped up to Matthew Wade who in short leg.

India, who had been bowled out for 244 within their first innings in answer Australia's 338, could be without Ravindra Jadeja found in the work chase after he dislocated his thumb, meaning 1 less wicket to have.
Source: Daily-sun - Sports News