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Pujara double hundred gives India 152-run lead vs Australia

20 March, 2017, 21:05 | Author: Alberta Rodriguez

Handscomb survived a scare on six when his flick to short leg was almost caught by Karun Nair, the only blip in an otherwise clean knock.

Otherwise they were chanceless, Handscomb finishing unbeaten after keeping out 200 balls in all.

Smith felt that Australia's showing in Ranchi means the momentum will be with the visitors going into the series deciding final Test in Dharamsala. We took the new ball and got a couple of wickets.

For Australia, Pat Cummins has been the most economical bowler.

Cheteshwar Pujara batted throughout the day to reach his 11th Test century as India battled for parity on the third day of the third Test in Ranchi.

"It's probably on our side at the moment, but having said that it's one-all and we're playing a decider in Dharamsala".

# Both Vijay and Pujara batting easily. I'm sure they're hurting a little bit in their change room. Also jumping in was Steve Smith and the umpire sought immediate intervention of Indian skipper Virat Kohli to defuse the situation.

Cummins produced a rip-snorter to have Ravi Ashwin caught behind as Australia tightened the screw in a final session, but Saha and Pujara saw India through to stumps with the match evenly poised.

This was the third Test century for the wicketkeeper-batsman, who has now cemented his place in the team. Australia trail by 3 as they go into take refreshments for the last time. In the process, both scored fifties and added 124 runs for the fifth wicket in 374 deliveries.

Showering praise on Cheteshwar Pujara and Wriddhiman Saha, Smith said: "It was a long time in the field and credit to India, they played beautifully".

"We fancied our chances because we didn't expect to get 150 runs in front", said India captain Virat Kohli.

It's surprised no one Cummins has seamlessly assumed the game-breaking role of Mitchell Starc, but there's another side of the equation that will have the Australians feeling at least a little nervous. In all, he hit five fours and two sixes. Smith had scored an important century to keep the Australian first innings together and his departure early was a setback for his young team.

With Pujara resuming his batting, a frustrated Steve Smith could just offer a chuckle and walked back to his position.

Smith said after the match concluded: "It was nervous".

Australia were comprehensively outplayed in the second half of the match but displayed a level of resilience seldom seen by the men in baggy green in this part of the world. Handscomb's best previous score in the series had been 24 but he was completely composed during his unbeaten knock.

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