India crash to 0-3 despite Kohli fightback
Royal Challengers Bangalore batsman Virat Kohli’s 75 in India’s second innings could not stop his team from losing the third Test and the Border Gavaskar Trophy with it. Australia have taken an unassailable 3-0 lead in the 4 match series with their innings and 37 runs victory at the Western Australian Cricket Association ground in Perth.
India resumed the day on 88/4 in their second innings, trailing Australia by 120 runs with Rahul Dravid on 32* off 63 balls and Kohli on 21* off 39 balls. The Baggy Greens had taken a 208 run lead on Day 2 after collapsing from 214/0 to 369 all out but India squandered the little momentum they had gathered by losing their top four before stumps. The onus was on Dravid to deliver a vintage innings and on Kohli to cement his no.6 spot with a match saving innings.
In the face of a highly disciplined and unrelenting Australian attack, the duo built on their overnight partnership of 37. Dravid was all slow burn while Kohli kept the score moving with his simple approach of finding gaps and running hard. Carrying on from where he had left off in the first innings, his batting was much more organized and this time he got the half century he deserved for his efforts, bringing it up off 92 balls with one of his trademark flicked on drives for four off Mitchell Starc.
With 10 overs to go for Lunch, Dravid played all around a straight delivery from Ryan Harris which swung in very late to sneak in through the gate and hit his leg stump. The partnership for the 5th wicket worth 84 runs was broken as Dravid went back for 47 runs grinded off 114 balls.
MS Dhoni scratched around before he was drawn forward by Peter Siddle by a short of a length ball outside off. Dhoni prodded, the edge carried to Ponting in the slips, he was gone for 2 off 16 and India were 148/6.
Former Royal Challenger Vinay Kumar and Kohli saw India reach lunch at 165/6. Things nosedived in the third over after resumption of play, Ben Hilfenhaus taking three wickets in the maiden over.
Vinay Kumar edged the first delivery and Zaheer unsuccessfully fended at a bouncer to make it two in two, both caught by Clarke at first slip. Ishant Sharma denied Hilfenhaus the hattrick but failed to make it to the end of the over, fending at the fifth one to give short leg an easy catch. Hilfenhaus began the over on 1/54 and ended it on 4/54.
Virat Kohli nicked the second ball of the next over by Ryan Harris to be caught behind by Haddin, gone for a 136 ball 75 as India were bowled out for 171 runs, losing by an innings and 37 runs.
Bowled out in just about 2 sessions, India lost their 7th consecutive Test overseas. Kohli having made his case for a promotion in the batting order, India will perhaps find the moment right to infuse more fresh blood in the line up at Adelaide.