Test Cricket News Report: Day 3, 2nd Test of the 2020-21 Australia v India Series at the Melbourne Cricket Ground


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India picked up the pieces at 277/5 after two days of play. And a 82 run advantage over the Aussies. Ajinkya Rahane did not last long to continue from his illustrious 112. Thanks to a run out. Though what a fine innings he played as a stand-in captain for Virat Kohli.But Ravi Jadeja on the other hand was able to make it on time for his test 50. So he can unveil the mighty sword celebration in style. Even as the all-rounder at No.7, sometimes at 8.

Ravi J just unable to get enough distance over the rope. Mitchell Starc found the breakthrough for Australia. Thanks to Pat Cummins who caught Ravi J on 57. Nate Lyon cleared the tail end while Josh Hazlewood captures Ravi Ashwin on 14.

India all out for 326 and hold a 131 lead going to lunch immediately. Australia have to fight back. And even build a larger total than that to still win this Test match. They unfortunately again fired off poor. It went at the expanse of Joe Burns when he did not plant his technique right. It looks like writing is on the wall for Joe after Rishabh Pant took the catch. Caught quicksmart inside his keeping gloves. And it sounds like they need Dave Warner back badly.

Matthew Wade is too bad from the other end. Even though he is adjusting to his new role as the Test opener. Matty is taking his time without rush. And rotated the style of play with Marnus Labuschagne who also piled some runs.

Then Marnus got trapped thinking he blocked it. But without his head still and there goes his wicket on 28. That was a good ball though from Ravi Ashwin. He targeted the stumps before Marnus edged straight to Rahane at slip. Australia 65-2 at tea as they need more than just 66 runs to shave off. India on the other hand need 8 wickets to win. As long as Australia unable to meet their run trail threshold.

Steve Smith may have survived another instant dismissal ahead of tea. It just did not last long however. The first two occasions were hurt by Ravi Ashwin. This time by Jasprit Bumrah at another single-digit score of 8. He tried to hit through square of the wicket. May be the right shot. But unfortunate not to see Smith knick the leg stump. He would be undroppable at first even after the ball-tampering saga. But Australia has to review this now after his recent slump.

Matty still calm & composed until Ravi Jadeja LBWed him out for 40. The runs are there unlike Joe. But unable to go on as Australia 4-98 after 44 overs. I do expect him to still retain the opening spot. There will be a new partner when Dave Warner returns from injury. Travis Head may have got off the mark as well. He unfortunately whacked without any movement on 17. There goes Mayank Agarwal with the catch at 2nd slip.

Skipper Tim Paine tried to turn around for Australia. And at least get past the run trail. But unfortunately got trapped by Ravi Jadeja for only one. And that left their tail enders little hope to save for Australia. Pat Cummins and Cameron Green (from No.6) halted India’s wicket spree. They both just met the run trail bubble towards the end of Day 3. The home team are on 133/6. And leads by just two runs. But it is a lot to be desired.

Three days are gone with two more left to play in this test. I would say to Cam and Pat to hang in there. No matter if it will take 1/4 or 1/2 or even the whole day. It is the only advice ever taken. And emerge out of nowhere from Australia. It will otherwise go to India if Cam and Pat gone early tomorrow. The away side deserved great with the ball. Mainly in the spin department from both Ravis. Plus some fresh quickie options from Mo Siraj. And an absolute blinder from Jasprit Bumrah.

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