Australia vs India: Ravichandran Ashwin stars as visitors claw back into the contest
India produced an inspired performance on the second day of the first Test match in Adelaide as Australia were left reeling at 191/7 at stumps.
Ravichandran Ashwin led from the front with three wickets to his name while Ishant Sharma and Jasprit Bumrah took two wickets each as India bounced back strongly from their lacklustre performance on the first day.
The Indian innings lasted for just one ball on the second day as paceman Josh Hazlewood had Mohammad Shami caught behind to wrap up the innings at 250.
But the bowlers came up with a strong reply with Ishant, destroying the woodwork behind Aaron Finch to get India off the mark in just the third ball of the innings. Although the next wicket came a while later, the visitors made sure they didn’t offer easy runs, having only managed 250 on the board.
Debutant Marcus Harris was the next one to bite the dust with Ashwin bowling a flighted delivery. The left-hander drew forward in an attempt to negate the spin and defend it down to the ground, the ball skidded and looped up, only to be pouched by Murali Vijay at short mid-off.
Shaun Marsh and his poor form with the blade continued as he dragged on a delivery from Ashwin onto the stumps to end his 19-ball innings, that yielded just two runs. At 59/3, Australia were in a spot of bother before a brief 28-run stand followed from Usman Khawaja and Travis Head.
But just as Australia were slowly looking to rebuild their innings, India struck again and it was Ashwin who was the bowler. The tall off-spinner bowled a flighted delivery that brushed Khawaja’s gloves before going into the hands of Rishabh Pant.
When the batsmen at the other end kept on falling, it was Travis Head, who showed resilience and battled it out, especially with the momentum being with the Indians. He eked out a 50-run stand with Pat Cummins and added 14 runs with Mitchell Starc in an unbeaten stand with that left the hosts still 59 runs behind, with just three wickets remaining.
Brief scores: Australia 191 for 7 (Head 61*, Handscomb 34, Ashwin 3-50) trail India 250 (Pujara 123, Hazlewood 3-52) by 59 runs.
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