By the end of the Day 3, it was an open contest and all three results were looking possible. But by the end of day 4, it looks like it’s all over for Australians. Day 4 has been hugely dominated by Indians and they batted superbly to impose a lead of 152 runs, they declared their innings on 603/9 in 210 overs. Resuming to bat in their second innings Australians lost 2 quick wickets for 23 runs in just 7.2 overs. All and all day belonged to Indians because of their splendid batting and bowling performances. Let’s see some of the talking points of Day 4:
3rd Double Century by Cheteshwar Pujara
For the record, Pujara has become the only batsman who has played the maximum number of balls in a test innings for India. The earlier record was in the name of Rahul Dravid who played 495 balls for scoring his 270 runs against Pakistan in Rawalpindi. Cheteshwar Pujara played 525 balls for his 202 runs and batted for over 10 long hours. He resumed his innings at the overnight score of 130 and on the last ball of 148th over, took a single on Nathan Lyons over to bring up his 150 of 391 balls. Pujara was just exceptional in this innings and apart from just one occasion in 154.4 over where he had been adjudged LBW by the umpire he applied himself very well. Cheteshwar Pujara after consultation with Saha went for the DRS and he was right ball was turning too much and missing stumps Umpire had to reverse his decision. This should be definitely classified as one of the most important innings played by Pujara given the context of the game. Hats off to his perseverance, persistence, and concentration he was phenomenal today.
Wriddhiman Saha in his post match conference heaped praises on Pujara:
“The way Cheteshwar Pujara was batting it never seemed we would lose a wicket. We did well in Irani Trophy. It was playing in our mind. We knew that we could do well if we back ourselves. We just tried to do that and looked for loose balls and run well between wickets,” Saha said.
“Puji has so much patience. He scores 200-300 in domestic cricket almost routinely. He is always on the top of his game. He showed great patience here. He was losing partner at the other end, and we were not getting really big partnerships. He curtailed his shots, trying to build big partnerships.”
3rd Century Wriddhiman Saha
When Mahendra Singh Dhoni retired from test cricket it looked liked it will be very difficult to find his replacement. But look at Saha what a player and wicketkeeper he is. Not only as a keeper but as a batsman he is doing wonders and making important contributions whenever it matters the most. He is known as a good striker of a cricket ball but in this innings, he applied himself along with Pujara beautifully. Maybe a Pujara effect he played patiently for his 117 from 233 balls with the help of 8 fours and one six.
— BCCI (@BCCI) March 19, 2017
Wriddhiman Saha rate this century as his best out of three centuries, in the post-match press conference Saha said:
“This is the best among the three I have. We badly needed partnership. My partnership began slowly. One of the best,”.
“Pujara always backed me to play my shots. Told me to be positive. I had the same approach here. I played in positive sense, so it came out well. wicket-keeper batsman added. He told me to break it up and think of small, small partnerships of 10-20 runs each. I just backed my strength and showed respect to good balls”.
Ravindra Jadeja 50, 2 Wickets & Partnership with Yadav
This man is hilarious look how important his contributions are from bat and bowl. In first innings, he took five wickets. In the second innings, he came into bat and fired a quick 54 of 55 balls with the help of 5 fours and two sixes. Then when Australians come into bat, he cleaned up David Warner and Nightwatchman Nathon Lyon before the end of days play. Not to mention his post fifty celebrations are even more special watch it.
— BCCI (@BCCI) March 19, 2017
The icing on the cake was a 54 run partnership between Ravindra Jadeja and Umesh Yadav for the 8th wicket. Yadav made a very important contribution of 16 runs which helped in consolidating Indias lead to 152 runs.
On Day 5 it looks like its just matter of time before Indian spinners Jadeja and Ashwin will get over remaining Australian lineup. To force a draw Australians have to play exceptionally well throughout the day. India losing from here just looks impossible, but test cricket is all about uncertainties lets see what will unfold on the day 4. Stay tuned for Day 5 talking points.
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