Indian spinner Ravindra Jadeja was on Friday crowned as the king on Day 2 of the third Test against Australia as he took the best advantage of the transforming pitch conditions and that too at the right time, at the JSCA International Stadium Complex, Ranchi.
Amidst all the action-packed drama, here are some talking points from the second Day.
Fiery start by Umesh Yadav
The 29-year-old Maharashtra lad Umesh Yadav started the day play on an aggressive note as he bowled a fiery delivery to break the batsman’s willow in two.
Yadav bowled a 140 kmph delivery to Glenn Maxwell, who blocked the bat for defense that caused the bat to split into two parts.
Consequent to the incident, the dynamic paceman showed his biceps to the Australian, expressing how much power he carries under his sleeve.
However, both the cricketers had a great laugh over that.
Maxwell marks comeback with century
Playing his fourth Test match that too after a gap of two years and four months, Glenn Maxwell staged a strong comeback as he scored 104 runs off 185 balls with the help of nine boundaries and two sixes.
The 28-year-old batsman became the second Australian to score a century in all-three formats after Shane Watson, who did the same in 2016.
With Steve Smith, Maxwell put a record partnership of 191 runs for the fifth-wicket.
Jadeja’s five-wicket haul
The Ranchi turf that made its Test debut on Thursday showed a great transformation on Day 2 and it was Indian spinner Ravindra Jadeja who understood the transformation the best and exploited it to the fullest.
Jadeja turned fortunes for India as he took five wickets in a session highly dominated by the Aussies.
In the second Test also, Jadeja emerged as a game-changer when he claimed a 6-wicket haul to help India win by 75 runs.
The stunning skipper Steve Smith
The biggest share of today’s entertainment came from the exemplary 178-run knock by Steve Smith (not out), who took the charge of Australians early from the start.
In the batting line-up that featured four batsmen dismissed for a single-digit score, Smith steadied the innings to bring hopes for the Aussie fans. His 361-ball measured innings were decorated with 17 boundaries.
With this, the 28-year-old became the fifth overseas captain to score a 150-plus knock. Earlier, West Indies’ Clive Lloyd and England’s Alastair Cook had done it thrice and twice respectively.
India’s strong fightback
Despite losing his wicket early in Indian innings, KL Rahul’s swift 67 runs were causative and gave India a sturdy start. He struck nine boundaries to keep the spectators at Ranchi off their feet.
Murali Vijay (42) and Cheteshwar Pujara (10) were batting as India reach 120/1 at stumps, trailing the Aussies by 331 runs with nine wickets in hand.