About the Match
The second test between India and Australia is shaping up to be a classic for the ages as India continue to claw back into the game. The visitors, though, are just one good session away from winning this match. Will Day 4 finally allow one team to take a dominant position in this test?
Day 4 Preview
India did everything that they needed to do on the third day to stay in this test match. They wrapped up the Australian innings to keep the lead under a 100 and then proceeded to put in their best batting performance of this series so far.
The day ended with India securing a lead of 126 runs with 6 wickets still in hand and two set batsmen at the crease.
It is these two batsmen, Cheteshwar Pujara and Ajinkya Rahane, that will hold the key for India on day 4 as well. The longer these two bat, the more Australia will get frustrated and give loose balls to be score off.
Pujara is batting on 79 and has looked absolutely comfortable after a torrid start. Rahane has also looked very fluent on a pitch that other batsmen have found run scoring an absolute effort on. We think backing Pujara to get his 100 and Rahane to get 50 plus are relatively safe bets.
The real test though will be for batsmen that come in after the fall of the next wicket. Karun Nair looked comfortable against spin in the first innings but the others after him cannot be depended on to score too many.
Australia should continue to believe that they are just one wicket from really ripping through this Indian batting lineup.
The pitch has been a central figure in this test match so far and after two days where the ball spun and spat, the third day actually seemed to be the best for batting so far. Local cricketer, KL Rahul, said that this was normal for the Bengaluru pitch and that it would really start to crumble from the fourth day on.
There was evidence of plenty of uneven bounce, sharp spin, and dust coming off the pitch to suggest that Australia will find a tough time scoring runs in the fourth innings.
So how many will India be happy with and how many would Australia be comfortable chasing?
We think that India will want to secure a lead of 250 to be comfortable while Australia would be happy chasing anything under 175. Both teams will, of course, want to err on the side of caution while coming up with these totals.
Keeping in mind the kind of batting that Renshaw, Smith and Shaun Marsh have shown so far in the series, Australia would be our favorites for anything around 200. India has made a stellar comeback into this game through its batsmen and will now want the bowlers to step up.
Ravindra Jadeja will once again be the bowler that we would back to take the most wickets thanks to his pace of bowling while we also expect Ashwin to throw up much more of a challenge with some runs at his back.
This test match is poised on a knife’s edge right now and both teams have a chance of victory. Home conditions and the chance to bowl fourth on this pitch make us back India to complete a famous comeback.
Back India to Win