Bowlers keep India in hunt for levelling the series at MCG
They might have lost their last five wickets for just 32 runs to end up with a lead that could have been at least 30 runs more, but India remained on course to level the series in Melbourne, thanks to another spirited performance by their bowlers.
Starting the day 3 on a solid note once again, centurion Ajnikya Rahane and Ravindra Jadeja carried on the task of adding to the overnight lead of 82 runs before a slight miscalculation saw Rahane get run-out. Jadeja too went back soon but not before notching up a well-deserved fifty. The India tail once again failed to wag and India managing a lead of 131 runs.
When Australia came in to bat, the conditions had gotten much better to bat but that did not dictate the mood in the Indian camp who had their plans ready for the Aussie batters.
Joe Burns once again failed to make any impact as Umesh Yadav removed him for four, while Marnus Labuschagne fell prey to some really smart bowling from Ravichandran Ashwin. Steven Smith was bowled down the leg side trying to work a delivery from Bumrah.
Ravindra Jadeja removed a set Matthew Wade on 40 and later a on slightly controversial call saw the back of Tim Paine. Paine had edged the ball to the keeper. The on-field call ruled the appeal in Paine’s favour before a spike on RTS overturned the decision. Interestingly, the HotSpot too had failed to spot the edge.
At the end of day’s play Australia were 133/6 with just two runs to play in their kitty. India would be wary of the Aussie tail on the morning of fourth day as it has often irritated them in the past.
Ajinkya and Co. would want to seal things as early as they can to ensure no hiccups are on the cards en route to what will be one of the most memorable victories in the recent history of Indian cricket.