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AUS vs IND 3rd Test: Pant set us up, says R Ashwin after Sydney Test heroics

While Ashiwn and Vihari handled the Aussie pace attack and spin wizardry of Nathan Lyon pretty well, Ashwin admitted that the pitch was of no help in the partnership especially with Pat Cummins coming at them with all his mights.

India TV Sports Desk India TV Sports Desk
New Delhi Published on: January 11, 2021 13:56 IST
Rishabh Pant
Image Source : GETTY IMAGES

Rishabh Pant bats during day five of the Third Test match in the series between Australia and India at Sydney Cricket Ground on Monday.

In what will go down in history books as an example of sheer determination, courage and grit, an injured Hanuma Vihari and an out-of-depth R Ashwin turned unlikely heroes of India on Monday when the duo bat out thier hearts in order to ensure a fighting draw against Australia on Day 5 of the third Test match in Sydney. 

While Hanuma (15* off 60) played on one leg for most of his innings after sustaining a hamstring injury minutes after coming out to bat post luch, Ashwin (50 off 116) held on to the other end to deliver a morale-boosting draw as Australians were visibly trudging back to pavillion at the end of the match.

India will now travel to Brisbane for the final and decisive Test match with the series locked 1-1.

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AUS vs IND: Pant set us up, says R Ashwin after Sydney Test heroics

In what will go down in history books as an example of sheer determination, courage and grit, an injured Hanuma Vihari and an out-of-depth R Ashwin turned unlikely heroes of India on Monday when the duo bat out thier hearts in order to ensure a fighting draw against Australia on Day 5 of the third Test match in Sydney. 

While Hanuma (15* off 60) played on one leg for most of his innings after sustaining a hamstring injury minutes after coming out to bat post luch, Ashwin (50 off 116) held on to the other end to deliver a morale-boosting draw as Australians were visibly trudging back to pavillion at the end of the match.

However, earlier in the day, India were looking for more than just a draw and the sole credit goes to Rishabh Pant for playing a firework-filled innings in the first two sessions. The wicket-keeper batsman produced a 118-ball 97, marred with three sixes and 12 boundaries, to dent Aussie hopes to ran through remaining Indian wickets in order to take a lead again in the series.

And Ashwin was gracious enough to admit that the draw wasn't going to be possible without Pant's early firework.

"Chasing 400 in Sydney was never going to be easy, as the ball was going up and down. That knock by Pant set us up. After Pujara and Pant's wicket and with Vihari injured, it was going to be difficult to go for the win," Ashwin said at the post-match presentation ceremony.

He also heaped praise on Hanuma for playing with a hamstring while explaining how he felt confident about playing a good knock before walking out to bat.

India will now travel to Brisbane for the final and decisive Test match from January 17 with the series locked 1-1. 

"Touring Australia is never easy so Vihari can be proud of himself. It was a knock equal to scoring a hundred. I was just telling the batting coach during the lunch break that I have never left the SCG without a fifty, this is a venue where I have done well with the bat and today's innings is right up there," said Ashwin.

While the duo handled the Aussie pace attack and spin wizardry of Nathan Lyon pretty well, Ashwin admitted that the pitch was of no help in the partnership especially with Pat Cummins coming at them with all his mights.

"Cummins was bowling in a different league altogether. There was a bit of double bounce, so it was difficult against Cummins. I think facing Bumrah in the nets is not easy. We have bowlers who can bowl in the 150s. I have been batting well in the nets, so it was great to spend some time in the middle," he said.

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