16.26 pm: India 248/6 after 91 overs.
And that is close of play. What a superb day of Test cricket. Australia kept things tight all day — ensuring that India never quite managed to get away. The discipline and the aggressive approach of the bowlers always got Australia back into the game. India have fought hard too but they would have loved one of their batsmen to get a big score — Rahul got 60, Pujara got 57 and Rahane, 46 but none of them managed to get away and drag India out of trouble. Nathan Lyon was brilliant for the Aussies and ended the day with figures of 28-5-67-4. Saha on 10 and Jadeja, 16, are still there in a middle and there is a lot of cricket to be played on Day 3. India trail by 52 runs now.
16.26 pm: India 243/6 after 88 overs.
DROPPED! Jadeja smashed two sixes to force Smith to go in for the new ball. Cummins comes charging in and induces the edge off Saha’s bat. Renshaw fails to hold on — his second drop of the innings. This could hurt Australia. The Indian wicket-keeper was on 9. It was an easy chance — well, as easy as they come at first slip. In and out.
15.56 pm: India 221/6 after 82.1 overs.
WICKET! Ashwin walking back now. India are in big trouble. Ashwin got caught in the crease and the umpire gave him out lbw. India went for the DRS review but it showed that the ball was just about hitting leg-stump. Came down to the umpire’s call. Just Saha and the tail remain. He will pretty much have to do what Wade did for the Aussies when the visitors were reduced to 208-6 in the first innings. Lyon now has wonderful figures of 26-5-56-4 — all four wickets have come after tea. His bowling figures before tea were 14-2-31-0. So that’s 12-3-25-4 after the break. Stunning.
R Ashwin lbw b Lyon 30 (49b, 4x4)
15.45 pm: India 216/5 after 79 overs.
WICKET! With just one over to go for the new ball, Rahane falls. This is a bog blow for India. Replica of the Steve Smith dismissal from the first innings, the ball didn’t turn, took the edge and was taken at first slip. How will Ashwin and Saha cope with the new ball? India trail by 84 runs with 5 wickets remaining.
A Rahane c Smith b Lyon 46 (104b, 7x4, 1x6)
15.32 pm: India 202/4 after 75 overs.
Drinks! 5 boundaries in the last 19 balls — 4 in the last 2 overs. Exactly what the doctor ordered for India. They are looking to go after the spinners and are doing with good shots, not slogs. New ball due in another 5 overs.
15.25 pm: India 186/4 after 73 overs.
Ravi Ashwin (10) has reached double figures for the first time with the bat in this series. Rahane has 33. They will both be wondering whether to attack before the new ball or to just continue playing normal cricket.
15.11 pm: India 167/4 after 64.4 overs.
WICKET! Beautiful bowling by Lyon. The bounce and the overspin did the trick for him and Karun Nair journey back to earth continues after the triple. The delivery bounced, turned, took the gloved and went off the thigh pad for a simple catch to short leg. Lyon now has 2-38. India trail by 133 runs.
K Nair c Wade b Lyon 5 (16b, 1x4)
14.31 pm: India 157/3 after 61 overs.
WICKET! Australia get the breakthrough after the break and it took them just 6 balls. Pujara hit a four off the fifth ball but shaped up to play a defensive stroke off the last ball of the over. It deceived Pujara in the air, bounced and turned — took the edge off the bat onto the pad and lobbed to short leg. Pujara walked. Karun Nair is in next.
C Pujara c Handscomb b Lyon 57 (151b, 6x4)
14.11 pm: India 153/2 after 60 overs.
India have come through another session — 89 runs, 1 wicket lost. Pujara (53) and Rahane (19) have put on 45 runs in 19.2 overs — slow going but they have kept the Aussies at bay. Australia, on the other hand, will believe that a few wickets could get them back into the match rather quickly. Remember, India are playing 5 bowlers in this game.
13.53 pm: India 145/2 after 54.3 overs.
Pujara gets another fifty as his golden run continues — he got to the milestone with a four, India’s first boundary in 10 overs. It has taken him 132 deliveries to reach the landmark and the team will be counting on him to make it a big one. During the course of this innings, Pujara also achieved the landmark for scoring the most runs in a Test season, surpassing the mark of 1269 by Gautam Gambhir which he achieved in the 2008/09 season.
13.53 pm: India 140/2 after 53 overs.
10 overs, 16 runs. The pacemen are now out of the attack but India need to be careful — they don’t want to get stuck in a rut. From playing his shots early on, Rahane has now gone to the other extreme. India still trail by 159 runs.
13.19 pm: India 125/2 after 43 overs.
Rahane has come out and played his shots. But they haven’t been very convincing. One can understand he doesn’t want the Aussies to get on top but he needs to settle down first. The short ball has proved to be his undoing before and the paceman are going to have a go at him.
13.00 pm: India 108/2 after 40.2 overs.
WICKET! Cummins baited Rahul and now he’s got him. It was short and outside the off-stump. Rahul shaped up to hook it, the ball hit the toe-end of the bat and looped to Warner at cover. This was poor cricket by Rahul. Before the ball, Cummins was seen chatting to Rahul — it was nothing serious but clearly enough to disturb Rahul’s concentration.
KL Rahul c Warner b Cummins 60 (124b, 9x4, 1x6)
12.45 pm: India 96/1 after 37 overs.
Rahul looking a little loose now. Edges, ball in the air and shots that he could well have avoided. Sunil Gavaskar in the commentary box can’t believe what he is seeing. Cummins has been steaming in from one end, crucial period for the Indian opener. He just needs to calm down.
12.28 pm: India 89/1 after 33.2 overs.
Fifty for Rahul (51 off 98). It has been a wonderfully controlled knock. He did get a chance when he was dropped in the first session but he has made the most of it and that is how it should be. This is his fifth 50, he has got one in every Test so far but he has never made it to the century-mark. Time to change that.
Rahul’s scores in the series:
Pune: 64 & 10
Bangalore: 90 & 51
12.28 pm: India 80/1 after 31 overs.
11 runs off the last over. Rahul slog swept O’Keefe for a six in the last over. This is good intent from the opener — Pujara will play his game but the game has to keep moving and that is where Rahul is key.
12.12 pm: India 68/1 after 29 overs.
And we are back. Hazlewood starts things off, slightly over pitches one and Rahul drives that through the covers for four. A good start to the session — in which India should look to be more aggressive.
11.32 am: India 64/1 after 28 overs.
Lunch time. Pretty decent session for India. They will be pleased with the fact that they haven’t lost wicket. Rahul has stuck to his task and Pujara has looked solid too. There is something there for the bowlers in the wicket but nothing too alarming.
11.25 am: India 59/1 after 26 overs.
India struggling to get a move on. Pujara seems comfortable but the problem with such a run-rate is that if India lose a few quick wickets, the momentum will shift back in Australia’s favour. Almost time for lunch too.
10.45 am: India 52/1 after 21 overs.
Another lovely four by Rahul takes India to fifty. The last few overs have seen a few more boundaries. With the pacers now tiring, the batsmen will look to score a few more runs. Time to dominate.
10.21 am: India 31/1 after 14 overs.
And that is the end of the first hour. It is time for a drinks break and India will be relatively happy with their performance. Just one wicket lost despite a few other close chances. Rahul is on 14 and Pujara is on 6.
10.21 am: India 29/1 after 11.2 overs.
DROPPED! Lyon out of the attack and Cummins back in. And he induces a genuine edge from Rahul, it went towards first slip (Matt Renshaw) at a rapid pace but he just didn’t react to it. By the time, he did... it was too late. The ball touched his finger and sped to the boundary line. Close shave for Rahul.
10.14 am: India 21/1 after 10.2 overs.
WICKET! Hazlewood gets his man. A bit of a battle in the last few overs between the paceman and Vijay and the Aussie has come on top. He was hitting all the right channels, getting Vijay to drive. This ball bounced a little more than usual, Vijay pushed at it and edged it to the keeper.
M Vijay c Wade b Hazlewood 11 (36b, 2x4)
10.02 am: India 16/0 after 8 overs.
Lyon into the attack already. The Australian pacers looked good but fatigue will be a big issue. Steve Smith will have to manage his bowlers very well. Lyon’s first ball was hit for four, so clearly the Indian openers don’t want him to settle. A sedate start to the day for India — just the way they want it.
Meanwhile, check this catch from the NZ-SA game. Stunning.
09.40 am: India 9/0 after 3 overs.
Second over of the day and we already have our first alarm. Hazelwood gets some extra bounce, Vijay into the drive... is forced to check his shot. It falls just short of Warner. Hazlewood is getting sharp bounce out of this wicket when he pitches it short — so the batsmen will need to be careful with the pull and the hook shot. Then, on the last ball, Hazelwood pitched it up and Vijay unleashed a beautiful cover drive for 4. Test cricket.
09.30 am: And we are a go. Day 2 begins with Pat Cummins. Murali Vijay is on strike. This first hour promises to be a lot of fun.
09.13 am: VVS Laxman has a look at the pitch and feels that it is still very good for batting.
“It is still very good for batting. As you can see Ashwin and Vijay didn’t get too much turn, only the wrist-spinner did. But for the first hour, the bowlers will get help. Even the Indian bowlers did. So we will need to give the first hour to the bowlers.”
09.05 am: On a day when Kohli carried drinks, Rahane proved that aggression can be purely cricketing too...
“Rahane may not say very much standing in the slips, taped fingers directing the traffic, but the intent with which he plays cricket is a form of aggression that is becoming all too rare in the modern era. With the bat in hand, when he’s wearing whites, Rahane rarely hits a shot in anger, but lurking beneath this polite exterior is a competitor who gives no quarter and asks for none.”
Read Anand Vasu’s piece HERE
08.57 am: Australia have quit the task on their hands but the new ball should help them. India will need to give the first hour to the bowlers.
08.49 am: Young chinaman bowler Kuldeep Yadav, who on Saturday made a memorable debut with a four-wicket haul against Australia, revealed that legendary Shane Warne taught him to bowl the flipper which he used to get his maiden Test wicket of David Warner
At the start of the Test series in Pune, chief coach Anil Kumble took Kuldeep to Warne for a session and it paid dividends
Asked about the kind of tips he got from Warne, the 22-year-old Kuldeep’s reply brought the house down.
“Did you see the first wicket (that of Warner)? That was not a chinaman. It was a flipper which I learnt from Shane Warne. So learning from Warne and then getting out his countryman is a nice feeling,” Kuldeep replied cheekily as everyone had a hearty laugh.
For Kuldeep, it was a dream come true to meet Warne and talk about the art of spin bowling.
“My idol is Shane Warne and I have followed him since my childhood. I only watch his videos and it was a dream-come-true when I met him. I could not believe I was speaking to my idol and sharing my thoughts on bowling and what all I should be doing. I did exactly what he (Warne) told me to do. He has promised that he will have another session with me in near future,” the youngster said.
Close of play on Day 1: Australia started the day well but it was India who ended the day on top. At lunch on day 1, Australia were sitting pretty on 131-1 at lunch but then things changed drastically. In the post-lunch session, chinaman bowler Kuldeep Yadav — playing his first Test for India — used all his variations to good effect and virtually pulled India back into the match. At tea, Australia were 208-6. Steve Smith worked his way to yet another century against India but his team-mates were not up to the challenge. Matthew Wade led a brief fightback after the break and the Australian innings ended on 300. There is something in the wicket for the bowlers and Day 2 promises to be pretty interesting as well.