The way India started playing on day 3, it appeared that they would run away with the match. Vijay and Pujara played with caution in the first hour of the day, making sure that there were no hiccups in the morning session.
Vijay (82 off 183) batted superbly but in order to try and up the ante of the innings, lost his focus and with it, his wicket. The wicket hurt India as it fell only in the last over before Lunch. India went to the dressing room with 2 wickets down. On the other hand, Australia were happy for getting an important wicket just before Lunch. The wicket had opened gates for them in the match.
The moment Virat Kohli came out to bat, the temperature increased. A lot had been said and heard before the Ranchi Test by Kohli and the Australians. It was time that the bat did the talking or the ball made the sound. However, the tongue was still at work. Virat edged one into the hands of Steve Smith at second slip, and it was enough to get Australians speaking. It was interesting to notice that none of them were speaking anything when he was batting. As soon as the visitors saw the back of Kohli, they saw an opportunity to sledge him.
Kohli could not do much about those gestures. He simply walked back, refusing to react. One cannot say that he will be as silent as he was during his walk back when Australians come out to bat, possibly tomorrow.
The day belonged to Pujara who batted and batted the whole day, scoring his 11th Test ton in the process, carrying his bat on the third day. It would not be wrong to say that he has been the best batsmen in this series for India.
Virat Kohli’s wicket was followed by Rahane’s who played a shot which many batsmen might think twice before playing even in a T20 game. The shot was so bad and untimely that Rahane might need to go back and watch how he played at Lord’s and Durban.
India stuck with Ashwin at number 7, pushing technically-sound Wriddhiman Saha to number 8 again.
It was a tough day for Australian bowlers, who bowled their hearts out. The pick of the bowler was Pat Cummins, who looked dangerous throughout the day. The delivery of the day, however, was bowled by Josh Hazelwood who clean-bowled Karun Nair with a Glenn McGrath kind of delivery. The bowled nipped back sharply to tumble Nair’s stumps, leaving the batsman numb.
India began the day at 120 for 1 and managed just 240 runs on the third day. Had the batsmen shown more maturity with the bat, there would have been more runs on the board.
The match now looks set for a draw. Until either of the team have a brainfade on the fourth day.