Cheteshwar Pujara’s century and Pat Cummins’ four-wicket haul ensured the third Test between India and Australia hangs in the balance at the end of play on day three at Ranchi.
Pujara and Murali Vijay started the day on a solid note for the Indian team, with the duo putting on 102 runs for the second wicket. India seemed to have had the game under control at 193/1, but an attempt at an ambitious shot from Vijay just before lunch saw him stumped for 82.
After that, the Indian batsmen were unable to build any significant partnership as the Australian bowlers kept pegging them back by taking wickets when a partnership threatened to blossom.
Pujara, though, fought it out for the hosts – ending the day unbeaten on 130 [his 11th Test century] with India’s score reading 360/6, still 91 runs behind Australia’s first innings total.
India captain Virat Kohli, who suffered a shoulder injury while fielding, did come out to bat in his regular position at number four but was dismissed for just six.
Ajinkya Rahane and Karun Nair got into double digits but weren’t able to carry on and notch up a significant score.
Cummins – who returned to the Australian Test XI for the first time in over five years – has starred with the ball with four wickets in the match so far. After dismissing KL Rahul on Friday, he got the scalps of Kohli, Rahane and Ravichandran Ashwin on Saturday.
Steve O’Keefe and Josh Hazlewood picked up a wicket apiece for the visitors.
Australia 451 all out [Smith 178*, Maxwell 104, Jadeja 5/124] lead India 360/6 [Pujara 130*, Vijay 82, Cummins 4/59] by 91 runs.