Cricket / border gavaskar series

Australia-India: My bat will talk, says Kohli on the third day of the Second Test
India looking down a barrel at Perth India made a disastrous start to the day losing Ajinkya Rahane to the fourth ball of the first over. He played a lazy defensive shot to a good length ball from Nathan Lyon that did not spin and the keeper took a rather straightforward catch. Hanuma Vihari playing in only his second Test joined Virat Kohli at the crease. Kohli got his 25th Test century in 214 balls and became fastest to reach the milestone after Sir Donald Bradman in just 75 Tests and 127 innings with a straight drive right out of the manual straight drive off Mitchell Starc. He thus became tied with his childhood hero Sachin Tendulkar for having scored the sixth Test century on Australian soil. Tendulkar needed 130 innings to achieve the feat. Kohli tells his teammates that his bat will do the talking Source Virat Kohli's and dismissal Kohli’s century was a class inning on a pitch where runs are difficult to come by. Although he was beaten several times in the innings it was his patience and tenacity that came through in the knock. At 214 balls, it was his second slowest century in terms of balls faced. When he reached the landmark, it was his celebration that amused one and all and drew the undivided attention of the social media. He looked towards his teammates in the pavilion, tapped his bat and moved the fingers of his right hand to indicate talking. He was trying to tell them that “I will let my bat do the talking”. And his bat did talk in that furlough. The fans were treated to some delectable drives, pulls and cuts. Handscomb takes Kohli's catch off an edge Source Hanuma Vihari played well for his 20 runs and looked like going a long way. But Hazlewood squared him up with a beautiful ball that was going away just outside the off stump. Vihari helplessly edged the ball to Paine behind the stumps. He had put together 50 runs for the fifth wicket with Virat Kohli. It was 28 runs later that Kohli got a thick edge to Handscomb in the slips off Cummins. The umpires opted for a review and Kohli was ruled out. The question of whether the ball touched the ground while Hanscomb was catching it was a subject of much debate on the television channels during the break. That it did touch the grass is very much evident from the replays and photographs. We will perhaps never know. With the advent of Mohammed Shami to the crease, the Australians were among India’s rather long tail. The Indian paceman did not bother the scorers much and was out to the first ball that he faced from Lyon. India was 252 runs for seven wickets. For all the talk that was going on about how the Perth wicket will assist the fast bowlers, Lyon took the last four Indian wickets to fall, ending the inning with 5 wickets for 67 runs. Ishant Sharma was caught and bowled by Lyon for one run. Rishab Pant who had played a patient inning was next out, caught by Starc off Lyon after scoring 36 runs. Yadav was caught by Khawaja and the Indian inning folded at 283 runs, conceding a 43 run lead to Australia. Nathan lyon finished with 5 wickets for 67 runs in India's first inning Source The Australian batsmen whither some hostile fast bowling The Indian opening bowlers Ishant Sharma and Jasprit Bumrah bowled brilliantly when the Australians came in to bat. It was in the fourth over of the day that Pujara couldn’t latch on to a catch at first slip. Harris nicked one from Sharma and the catch was the wicket keeper’s to take. The problem with Pant and I have said it in a post during the England tour, is that he comes almost upright when the ball pitches. His head is therefore moving and he is not in the best position to judge which way the ball is going. It is as important for the batsman to have his head steady when the bowler is delivering the ball as it is for the wicketkeeper when the ball takes off the pitch. Jasprit Bumrah was lethal. He knocked Harris, who was trying to duck into a short ball, over backwards. On the stroke of tea, Mohammed Shami hit Finch, who had played some fine strokes, on the index finger of his right hand and Finch had to retire hurt. With Australia having secured a lead of 102 runs, Harris was cleaned up By Bumrah with a ball that held its line and Harris decided to throw the kitchen sink at it. Shaun Marsh was not too comfortable when he came in and Mohammed Shami opened his account in this match when he got the batsman caught by Pant. Sharma was the next to strike when he got Handscomb lbw off the first ball off his second spell and Australia were 85 runs for three wickets. A dejected Marcus Harris after he let one go from Bumrah only to see him being castled Source Mohammed Shami set up Tim head nicely when he bowled him a short ball slightly wide of the off stump. This is the second time that he has been dismissed caught at third-man when trying to cut a ball. Though the Australian batsmen did not look too comfortable out in the middle, they already have a lead of 175 runs, having scored 132 runs for the loss of four wickets in their second essay. For India, it has been a case of what would have been in the second inning when their fast bowlers have bowled extremely well. The ball is certainly coming faster off the pitch and the cracks are widening. Batting on this pitch is not going exactly going to be a picnic on the last two days of the Test. What India will be looking for will be some quick wickets when play resumes tomorrow morning. With a stiff breeze blowing in from the sea end (the spectators were holding on to their caps and hats) and the cracks on the pitch widening, India will not want to chase a target of 300 on this pitch in the fourth inning. India will have to give their best to restrict Australia to a lead of fewer than 250 runs if they are not to lose this Test match. Chateshwar Pujara floors a catch off an Harris edge that should have been taken by Rishab Pant Source

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