In yet another see-saw session between India and Australia, the visitors managed to score 189-5. After resuming the session from 87-3, India went on scoring runs at a quick pace and tried to push Australia on the back foot. But two wickets in the session mean that the Indians are still not in control of the proceedings. First to depart in the session was Hanuma Vihrai (21), who looked to up the ante and fell to Nathan Lyon while attempting a sweep shot.
From there on Ajinkya Rahane (53 no) and Rishabh Pant strung a quickfire 57-run partnership. But Pant lost his concentration and went for a wild heave, getting caught behind the wicket. Even though at tea, India are just six runs behind Australia’s total of 195, but they need a solid partnership to really get back into the match.
The fact that they have to bat last on this wicket, they should aim at scoring at least 300, that will give them a cushion of 100 runs. Meanwhile, Australia left-arm pace bowler Mitchell Starc on Sunday became the ninth Australian bowler to get to 250 Test wickets when he removed India wicketkeeper Rishabh Pant in his 11th over of the innings during the second day’s play of the second Test at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.
Starc, who reached the milestone in his 59th Test, had on Saturday removed Mayank Agarwal for a duck for his 249th to go clear of former Australia leg-spinner Richie Benaud’s haul of 248 wickets. The 30-year-old Starc was instrumental in helping Australia dismiss India for 244 in the first innings of the first Test, taking four wickets for 53 runs last week.
Pant’s wicket was crucial for Australia as he was looking good on 29 and had added 57 runs with Ajinkya Rahane for the fifth wicket. Starc’s Australia teammate, off-spinner Nathan Lyon is eight wickets short of 400 wickets.