Stumps: Do join us nice and early on Sunday, it will once again be a 4.30 am IST start. This Test match, as things stand, seems to be heading only one way.

We’ll leave you with this, write to us @thefield_in on Twitter if you have anything to add.

Readers’ comments: Is Cheteshwar Pujara’s batting style a concern for India?

A quick chat with Pujara: Said that the pitch seems flat but it is not. Aussie bowlers great lengths and that one has to spend time in the middle to get runs. The problem was losing crucial wickets in the first session, he adds. Also said India are missing the services of Jadeja while bowling.

STUMPS Australia 103/2 after 29 overs: After a quiet phase, Labuschagne brings up the 100 for Australia with a brilliant on drive for four. Strong leg-side field but finds the gap anyway when Saini went a tad too full. Finishes the day with a single and remains unbeaten on 47.

Australia 97/2 after 27 overs: Nightwatchman on alert for Aussies.

Australia 96/2 after 26 overs: Siraj continues to run in hard, but the levels from India are visibly dipping now. Rohit Sharma, standing at silly mid-on, seems to be trying to egg the team on. Lead is now 190.

Australia 92/2 after 25 overs: Siraj and Saini bowling in tandem now, was just a short burst for Bumrah understandably. Smith hits another glorious cover drive off yet another no ball from Saini.

Australia 83/2 after 23 overs: Bumrah getting into a good rhythm. Bowls a couple of superb deliveries in that over, even earning Smith’s nod of approval. Siraj operating from the other end.

Australia 81/2 after 21 overs: Bumrah has been bowling some cutters too. Meanwhile, Smith nails a cover drive on the up. The hotspot showed the ball hitting the bat’s sweet spot.

Australia 77/2 after 20 overs: Ashwin is also going more than 4 runs an over at this point.

At this point, as many have observed, India might need Ravi Shastri to turn up in whites.

Australia 71/2 after 18 overs: Aggression (or positivity, as he’d say) from Smith as he lofts Ashwin over mid-off for a four.

This is quite interesting.

Australia 64/2 after 17 overs: The speeds are still low for Bumrah, certainly something to keep an eye on going forward. Labuschagne flicks one for a four and he has motored on to 33 off 41.

Bumrah back for another spell. Wasn’t at his best to start.

Australia 60/2 after 16 overs: Another tidy over from Ashwin. The ball certainly keeping low from the over-the-wicket angle to right-handers. Australia wouldn’t actually mind that.

Australia 57/2 after 15 overs: Poor from Saini. A bit too short and Labuschagne just pulled it away for four. He now has 28 off 32.

Australia 50/2 after 14 overs: Ashwin starts off after the break by gifting a full toss to Labuschagne who puts it away for four. Nine runs from the over as Australia bring up the fifty of their innings – the lead is now up to 144 runs.

Australia 41/2 after 13 overs: Time for a drinks break after a good over by Saini. He seems to have more control in this innings than he did in the first.

Australia 40/2 after 12 overs: Lead is now 134. Bumrah, meanwhile, reportedly went off the field briefly but he’s back on now.

REVIEW: After what felt like an eternity and everyone pretty much assuming the ball was missing leg, DRS ball-tracking shows Umpire’s Call for a LBW appeal. Bizarre. India fortunate to retain the review but that was a dubious one.

Australia 39/2 after 11 overs: Smith and Labuschagne in the middle, Ashwin starting off well. This is the spell that India need to go their way to come back into this match.

WICKET! ASHWIN HAS STRUCK! The battle with Warner was always going to be a fascinating one and Ashwin takes no time to dismiss the Aussie opener. Given out LBW, Warner’s review returns Umpire’s Call.

Ashwin comes on, should be a good battle with Warner

Australia 35/1 after 8 overs: Saini comes on and bowls a loose first over. A freebie to LAbuschagne is cut away for four.

Australia 28/1 after 8 overs: A boundary for Warner, down the ground. Jadeja is sitting in the dressing room with the Indian coaches, bandage around his left thumb.

Australia 24/1 after 7 overs: Bumrah has still not hit his strides and it’s a bit worrying for India. Jadeja, meanwhile, has been off the field as well.

The Steyn impact, if you will

WICKET! India needed that. India really needed that. Siraj comes up with a beauty to get the outside edge of Pucovski’s bat, Saha takes a good catch to his right. Australia 16/1.

Australia 14/0 after 5 overs: Warner continues to look less than 100% when running. Might just go after the bowling here.

Australia 12/0 after 4 overs: A ball from Siraj keeps quite low and beats Warner on the angle.

Australia 9/0 after 3 overs: Bumrah still seems to be bowling within himself. Pucovski gets another boundary.

Australia 5/0 after 2 overs: Siraj starts with a maiden. A lengthy break in the next over as the landing area seems to be uneven.

Australia 5/0 after 1 over: Final session underway with Wriddhiman Saha keeping for India. Jasprit Bumrah and Co have a tough challenge ahead, Australia firmly in the driver’s seat. A boundary for Pucovski in the first over.

OH DEAR: More bad news for India.

End of session: Well, just to confirm, this is indeed the tea break.

Innings break: More worrying news for India, as Rishabh Pant has reportedly gone for scans. Saha might keep in the second innings, we’ll find out soon.

WICKET! Siraj is caught behind off Cummins and that’s the end of India’s innings. Things escalated quickly. 244 all out, trail by 94 runs.

India 244/9 after 100 overs: A short ball from Green and Jadeja pulls it for four, last ball of the over. Quickly goes for a chat to Siraj who now has to face the music.

India 240/9 after 99 overs: Jadeja retains strike with a ramp shot to third man.

India 239/9 after 98.4 overs: Jadeja alright to resume for now but this is a major worry for India if it affects his bowling.

OUCH! Another injury break. A decent last-wicket partnership as Jadeja throws his bat around to bring the deficit below 100. But soon after, Starc sends down another short ball that hits Jadeja on his left thumb. He is in pain.

India 231/9 after 98 overs: Siraj plays arguably the shot of the day with a brilliant square cut off Cameron Green and then ducks under a bouncer off the last ball.

India 225/9 after 97 overs: A couple of boundaries for Jadeja in that Starc over but unfortunately he can’t get off strike.

WICKET! Guess what? Another run out. Ravindra Jadeja wants a second run and he pushes Bumrah for it, but Labuschagne is aware to come up with a brilliant direct hit at the non-striker’s end. Third run out of the Indian innings. Terrific fielding again.

India 215/8 after 96 overs: A FOUR for Jadeja off Lyon and more importantly a single off the fifth ball. Bumrah plays out one ball with authority.

India 210/8 after 95 overs: Bumrah ducks under a bouncer from Starc. Phew.

WICKET! Jadeja doesn’t farm the strike and Saini is left facing an entire over from Starc. The wicket seemed inevitable in that over. Saini lobs a short ball to silly point.

India 208/7 after 94 overs: Saini, Siraj and Bumrah... India have 3 No. 11s for their tail. Jadeja has to play a blinder for India to get even close.

Saini is the new man in and India could fold in no time here.

WICKET! That’s just shocking cricket from India...Ashwin, specifically. He is run out while ambling across for a single and the throw comes to his end, catches him short.

India 202/6 after 91 overs: A maiden over from Hazlewood to Jadeja, operating around the wicket. The ball is seemingly keeping low a bit more often now.

The Ashwin-Jadeja partnership in this 2016 match versus England was crucial. India need something like that in significantly more difficult circumstances.

India 202/6 after 90 overs: Ashwin and Jadeja pulled India out of a hole against England once in Mohali with a superb partnership. They need such an effort here for India to remain in the game. Ashwin gets going with a four through cover as the players break for drinks.

WICKET! CHETESHWAR PUJARA GONE! Oh, Australia are well and truly on top now. Pat Cummins produces another beautiful delivery to get Pujara out caught behind. India in deep trouble, 195/6.

WICKET! RISHABH PANT FALLS! Josh Hazlewood, again. It’s turning out to be his day at SCG. Gets Pant driving and the catch is taken well by Warner at second slip. India 195/5.

HALF CENTURY! Cheteshwar Pujara brings up a 174-ball fifty and that’s the slowest of his career. “Won’t worry him one bit. He’s still there, he is doing a tremendous job,” says Shane Warne.

India 193/4 after 87 overs: Now Pujara takes a blow from Cummins. Drops his hands and takes one on the shoulder region. Follows that up with a four through third man. This will now be the slowest fifty of Pujara’s career.

India 189/4 after 85 overs: There is a bandage wrapped around his elbow and Pant plays out a maiden over off Hazlewood. Looking in some discomfort still.

India 189/4 after 85 overs: Rishabh Pant takes guard again, is targetted with a short ball again, and this time he pulls it away. Gripping contest.

OH DEAR! Rishabh Pant has taken a blow on his left elbow. He is in some pain at the moment.

No Starc vs Pant now, Cummins is into the attack.

India 188/4 after 84 overs: Pant takes a single and gets to the other end. Which means it’s going to be Hazlewood vs Pujara and Starc vs Pant now. Popcorn.

India 187/4 after 83 overs: A maiden over from Starc but he is a bit too wide too Pujara at the moment. Maybe trying to get him driving? Unlikely to tempt him though. Beat the outside edge once when he got closer.

India 187/4 after 82 overs: A boundary of Pant through the third man region as Hazlewood pitched one short. In control, the Indian batsman.

India 183/4 after 81 overs: A rather harmless over with the new ball from Starc.

New ball due. New ball taken. Starc steaming in.

India 181/4 after 43 overs: Pujara moves on to 43 and retains strike. Will Australia take the new ball?

We are back for the 2nd session. Rishabh Pant and Cheteshwar Pujara in the middle. Nathan Lyon starts off, with one over left for the 2nd new ball.

UPDATE: The Glenn McGrath quiz is back on Sony Six! 260? VVS Laxman. Right. 354? Mike Ahterton. Right, of course. 524? Struggles a little. Sarwan or Samuels? Samuels, he goes with Samuels. And he is right. Again!

Wondering what’s it about? Check it out here.

Session break:

Session break: India are just about staying in this game, I’d think. Australia would be happy with their lead and they will get to bowl last as well.

SESSION BREAK: Venture a guess who’s ahead at this time?

India 180/4 after 79 overs: LUNCH ON DAY 3. Rishabh Pant sees out that Cameroon Green over. 84 runs from 34 overs in that session. Two wickets gone. Australia would be happy with that but Pant-Pujara are keeping India in the game.

Last over before lunch coming up...

India 180/4 after 78 overs: Worth noting that Green and Labuschagne are bowling now because the new ball is soon due (but would still think Lyon was the better option but Paine in the mood to experiment).

More Ricky Ponting analysis:

India 177/4 after 77 overs: Nice symmetry there to the score as Cam Green completes his first over of the innings. Labuschagne and Green bowling in tandem is not something we expected this early.

It’s thrill-a-minute when Pant is in the middle.

India 173/4 after 75 overs: Pant with another boundary, taking on Starc. Not holding back.

CLOSE CALL! Marnus Labuschagne into the attack (yes, really) and off the very first ball, Australia go up in appeal for a caught behind against Rishabh Pant. Given not out, remains not out. There seemed to be some deviation off the glove to the naked eye but technology shows nothing. Pant responds with a sweep for four, of course.

India 163/4 after 73 overs: Bouncer from Starc and Pant is in trouble for a moment. Had no idea where the ball went and it is over the keeper’s head, comfortably.

India 158/4 after 72 overs: Pujara into the 40s after a punch through offside off Lyon for four.

India 153/4 after 71 overs: Pujara watchful as ever against Starc. Correction to the score, India were 153/4 after 70 overs.

A Pujara-Pant partnership is just a narrative delight. One man splits opinion about his strike rate being low, the other splits opinion about his aggressive approach. Both fascinating to watch, equally.

India 142/4 after 70 overs: Words from Starc to Pant. In the next over from Lyon, he cuts one away for four. The excitement is building.

Just watch. Brilliance!

India 142/4 after 68 overs: Vihari started running after coming down the track, had a headstart. But that is just brilliant from Hazlewood to release the ball as quickly as he did. Pant in the middle now.

WICKET! JOSH HAZLEWOOD! The Aussie pacer comes up with a moment of magic but not while bowling. Spectacular piece of fielding at mid-off to catch Hanuma Vihari short of the crease.

India 141/3 after 66 overs: A nice little phase for India, this. Pujara looking for runs against Lyon as Vihari gets his eye in. A vital partnership, and a vital innings for Vihari.

India 138/3 after 65 overs: Commentator: “16 from the first 100 balls for Pujara, he’s scored 15 off 12 after that. Has moved into Big Bash mode.” There was an off-drive for four in that over. Lovely shot.

India 134/3 after 64 overs: After the drinks break, Vihari is almost caught at short leg in Lyon’s over. Lobbed over him. That was close.

India 132/3 after 62 overs: 16 off the first 100 balls. 11 in one over off Nathan Lyon. Just delightful from Pujara as he hits his first and second boundaries of this innings. Took 148 balls in Adelaide, so improvement!

India 121/3 after 61 overs: Another maiden over.

Hazlewood hiding the ball in his left hand as he runs in. Australia are seeing the ball reverse perhaps. Not great evidence as such, maybe a bluff too.

India 121/3 after 60 overs: Pujara is exclusively scoring of full deliveries.

India 118/3 after 58 overs: A look at the Rahane’s wicket:

India 118/3 after 57 overs: Change from both ends. Lyon will now be followed by Hazlewood. There was a review wasted by Australia in that Lyon over for a bat-pad appeal. Hazlewood follows that up with a maiden over.

WICKET! Just what Pat Cummins deserved for his spell. Ajinkya Rahane is cramped for room by a short ball that moved back in. Chops one on to the stumps. Big wicket for Australia! India 117/3.

India 116/2 after 54 overs: CHANCE, THEN SIX! Rahane inside edges one to his pad that just lobs beyond Wade at short leg. He then dances down the track against Lyon and hits a six.

India 110/2 after 53 overs: A seriously good short ball from Cummins to Pujara that whisks past his chest. Those are the nastiest ones to face. Negotiated well.

India 107/2 after 52 overs: The first boundary of the morning is a lovely cover drive on the up by Rahane off Starc. Timed beautifully.


India 101/2 after 51 overs: It’s a little thing but Rahane and Pujara have so far ensured neither of them are getting stuck at one end with the odd single. Cummins with another probing over. Short ball to Pujara followed by a series of good length deliveries.

India 101/2 after 50 overs: Starc going short, short, short. Cummins attacking the stumps. Not an inch being given to Indian batsmen so far this morning.

#PinkDay today, too. It’s Glenn McGrath’s big day of the calendar as SCG turns pink to honour his late wife Jane McGrath and raise awareness, funds for breast cancer.

India 101/2 after 48 overs: A bouncer to start things off the day for Starc and Rahane gets away from it. A single in that over.

Well, just one for Lyon. Starc comes on from the other end. A change of ends for him from last night.

India 100/2 after 47 overs: No run from Cummins’ first over. Accurate as you’d expect.

Lyon bowling the first over, Cummins from the other with just one slip in place. Interesting tactical start to the day by Australia

India 100/2 after 46 overs: Interesting to see Lyon bowl the first over. We’d venture Pujara and Rahane wouldn’t have minded seeing that. Good rotation of strike in that over.

Nathan Lyon starts off...

04.20 am: First things first...


04.15 am: Hello all and welcome to our live coverage of the third day of the third Test between Australia and India. The game’s on a knife’s edge at Sydney Cricket Ground and this could prove to be a pivotal day to decide the series.

Australia snapped up two wickets in the final session Friday to leave India with work to do in the third Test as they chase the hosts’ 338 following Steve Smith’s first century of the series.

Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins got the breakthroughs, dismissing openers Rohit Sharma (26) and Shubman Gill (50) as India reached stumps at 96/2, 242 runs adrift. While India’s bowlers did well, the batsmen have once again been put under pressure.

Cheteshwar Pujara was not out nine and captain Ajinkya Rahane, who scored a century in the second Test in Melbourne, on five after an attrtitional final hour or so at SCG.

Australia resumed their first innings on 166/2, but only managed another 172 in the face of India’s spirited fightback led by spinner Ravindra Jadeja who took 4/62.

Smith, though, was the star attraction, smacking 131 – his 27th century, and his first since the 2019 Ashes in England – before being the last man to fall thanks to a sensational direct hit from Jadeja. Marnus Labuschagne made 91 and Will Pucovski 62 on debut.

(With AFP inputs and statistics courtesy ESPNCricinfo Statsguru)

At stumps day 2

Batsmen Runs Balls SR 4s 6s
Rohit c & b Hazlewood 26 77 33.76 3 1
Shubman  c Green b Cummins 50 101 49.50 8 0
Pujara  NOT OUT 9 53 16.98 0 0
Rahane   NOT OUT 5 40 12.50 0 0