India bundled out Australia for a meagre 151 in the first innings and it was largely due to the efforts of a certain Jasprit Bumrah, who registered his best figures in Test cricket with 6/33.
Having attained a 292-run lead, Indian skipper Virat Kohli opted to bat again instead of enforcing a follow-on–a move that surprised none other than Australian great Allan Border who said that the visitors ‘could have had the game just about done today’.
“You would like to think so [that Australia can come back into this] and I think this afternoon’s cricket has obviously given Australia a little bit of hope but the lead now almost to that stage where it’s going to be hard to chase down. The pitch is still playing okay and we know it doesn’t deteriorate too much over here the next couple of days. India are still in the box seat but they’ve left the door slightly ajar for the Aussies,” he said, as quoted by Sky Sports.
He said he was surprised by Kohli move to bat again despite forecasts of rain. India have won four out of the five matches they have played under Kohli’s captaincy when they have enforced a follow-on.
“I was really surprised that follow-on wasn’t enforced given that talking about high percentage of rain on Day 5 and even tomorrow some rain. So just with that lurking in the background, I thought you’ve got all the momentum you way, you’ve bowled Australia out and Bumrah has been fantastic. You’ve only bowled like what 67 overs so I thought you could mix and match your bowlers this afternoon and get them to freshen over the night and attack Australia in the morning.
“So they could have had the game just about done today and even if you gotta chase, say Australia have batted extraordinarily well and you’ve got to chase 120-140, this pitch here can get those runs. Look I thought India missed an opportunity to really seal the game but they’ve still got the higher ground,” he added.