India take stranglehold on 1st Australia Test

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Adelaide: India built a 166-run lead over Australia on the third day of an absorbing opening Test in Adelaide on Saturday with dangerman Cheteshwar Pujara not out 40, although the late wicket of master batsman Virat Kohli gave the home team a glimmer of hope.

At stumps, the visitors were 151-3, adding to their first innings total of 250. Ajinkya Rahane was not out one, alongside Pujara who scored a gritty first innings century.

It was looking ominous for Australia with Kohli and Pujara compiling a 71-run third-wicket partnership, but spinner Nathan Lyon got a massive breakthrough when he snared the Indian skipper for 34 near the close of play.

“I think it´s slightly in our favour,” said Indian paceman Jasprit Bumrah.

“The late wicket was a good thing for them and the first session tomorrow will be very important. If we capitalise on that it will leave us in a very good place in this match.”

He added that Pujara was key.

“He´s showed a lot of patience and that is the key element in Test cricket. A great knock and hopefully he continues tomorrow.”

Australia were dismissed for 235 just before lunch, with Travis Head top scoring on 72 on a day hit by rain delays, leaving them 15 runs adrift.

Batting in front of his home crowd, Head said he was disappointed to not add more runs but believed the game was “evenly poised”.

“It´ll be a big first hour tomorrow, if we can get a couple of wickets and put them under pressure. I think the bowlers did a wonderful job to contain and continue to put pressure on them tonight.”

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