Day 5, fourth innings, Gabba Test. Both India and Australia were eying the Border-Gavaskar trophy. Draw had taken the backseat. India needed less than 150 runs to win the match and clinch the historic series without the likes of Virat Kohli, Ravindra Jadeja, Ashwin or Jasprit Bumrah backing the side. Australia, on the other hand, needed 7 more wickets to wrap up the proceedings.
Then there was Cheteshwar Pujara. Braving one blow after the another. Aussie quicks were showing no mercy whatsoever. Pujara hung in there till he could, solid as a rock, stealing boundaries upon every opportunity that came his way. He was battered and bruised, yet he batted for over 200 deliveries.
Pujara frustrated the bowling attack-- a sight to cherish for the Indian cricket fans. Pujara's gutsy innings was lauded on social media, his (regular) body blows also inspired memes that only complimented the Test batsman he is. Pujara faced 211 balls for his fighting 56.
Pujara hit on the body, fingers, helmet on Day 5, most of them are nasty ones - he is still batting out and fighting hard for India.— Johns. (@CricCrazyJohns) January 19, 2021
The entire Cricketing gear of Cheteshwar Pujara should be sponsored by Ambuja Cement.— Gabbbar (@GabbbarSingh) January 19, 2021
Facebook comment on Pujara Batting"You’re looking for win because India has lost only one wicket and India has lost only one wicket because Pujara is batting"— CricBeat (@Cric_beat) January 19, 2021
Earlier in the day, Nathan Lyon, bowling his first over in India's inning had (almost) the prized wicket of Pujara; that was, according to the DRS and the third umpire. Lyon tossed one up outside off that spun in and Pujara - on the move down the track looking for a forward defense - got one on his pads with the Australian appealing for an LBW.
On-field umpire remained unmoved and the review was taken and though eventually, Australia were left disappointed as the ball tracker showed a considerable portion of the ball hitting the wickets and Pujara was saved due to Umpire's call.
However, in the end, Rishabh Pant's stunning 89* helped India script history at the Gabba, winning the series 2-1 and thus retaining the Border-Gavaskar trophy. The Indian wicketkeeper-batsman hit the winning runs with only 18 balls left in the nail-biting contest.