India vs Australia: Rishabh Pant strokes blazing fifty, puts on 100-run stand with Pujara


India’s hopes of ekeing out a draw in the third Test of the India-Australia series at the Sydney Cricket Ground recieved a big boost with the visitors going into lunch on Day 5 at 206 for 3 on Monday. Rishabh Pant, who came out to bat with an injured elbow at the No. 5 position, was unbeaten on 97-ball 73 while Cheteshwar Pujara was giving him company on 41 off 147 balls.
The Pant-Pujara partnership have put on 104 runs so far after Nathan Lyon had sent back stand-in skipper Ajinkya Rahane packing for just 4. Rahane popped up a catch to Matthew Wade at short-leg in just the second over of the day with India score at 102 for 3.
Pant came out to bat in an aggressive mood after being hit in the first innings by Mitchell Starc on the elbow. The Delhi wicketkeeper batsman didn’t take the field in the second innings with Wriddhiman Saha standing in.
The young batsman, batting at the No. 5 position for the first time in his career, took his time to settle down — taking 33 balls to score his first five runs. Pant then decided to take charged against off-spinner Lyon, lofting him over mid-on for four and then smashing him over long-on for his first six.
Pant, however, rode his luck after he was dropped twice at 3 and 56 — the second one by Australian skipper Tim Paine off Lyon. He reached his third career Test fifty off just 64 balls with four fours and three sixes off Lyon.