Cheteshwar Pujara has once again displayed a focused and determined performance as he notched up his 18th Test ton, his third in the series against Australia so far. He scored a ton in Adelaide (1st Test), Melbourne (3rd Test) and now in Sydney (4th Test). He reached the three-figure mark in the final session of Day 1 of the Sydney Test. (Live Score & Updates IND vs AUS 4th Test, Day 1)
Once again, Pujara proves his worth as a red-ball specialist after India lost KL Rahul early. He put up a 116-run partnership with Mayank Agarwal (77) and a 51-run stand with skipper Virat Kohli (23) after India won the toss and elected to bat first.
So much so, India were scoring at a run-a-minute at one stage before drinks, as 64 runs came in the first hour of play after lunch. (Match Scorecard)
Agarwal looked good for a hundred, but threw it away when he holed out in the deep off Lyon in the 34th over and walked back shaking his head at an unnecessary shot.
Kohli then walked out to boos for the fourth Test running, but got going immediately with an immaculate cover drive. Australia resorted to more conservative bowling and kept his scoring rate in check.
But they had no response to Pujara's grounding knock again, albeit with a different pace.
Another 44 runs were added in the second hour of play, with Pujara reaching his half-century off 134 balls, including three fours in an over from leg-spinner Marnus Labuschagne (0/12) before the tea break.
Senior off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin did not pass the fitness test this morning and was ruled out of the match.
(With PTI Inputs)