Test Cricket: 2018-19 Domain Test Series 3rd Test of Australia v India at the Melbourne Cricket Ground, Day 1 Afternoon Session Review

After the 40-minute break, India resumes on 1-57 with Mayank Agarwal (34*) & Cheteshwar Pujara (10*) at the crease.

Agarwal immediately put the front foot in the gas with a classic cover drive straight marrying the rope for four.

He’s well organized in defense plus adding some classic and essential shots on the run which backed up his 50.

Yes, he may not have a sponsored bat by any maker.

But Agarwal loves hitting the offside shots using the full flat bat anywhere across the pitch as long as it represents:

  • Power to beat the fielder and bowler
  • Using feet and retaining head position to execute the shot
  • Not reaching out and whack by not moving feet

Privthi Shaw would’ve batted and changed India’s game should he not be injured throughout this tour.

Well, Agarwal so far has controlled his time in the middle nicely as there’s more work to do & reach his maiden 100.

At the same time, Agarwal formed a 50-run partnership with Pujara as India goes past 90.

Not long later, Agarwal whacked the first six of the day off the bowling of Nathan Lyon.

Lyon produced a bit too straight before Agarwal went deep & whacks with the full flat bat as he follows through the loft shot past the rope.

With no man trying to interrupt Agarwal’s efforts, Australia struggled to try and break the Agarwal-Pujara stand.

Even the change of spin still didn’t work likewise from the morning session before Pat Cummins picks another scalp on Agarwal.

It’s another short ball attacking play within the three stumps as Agarwal tried to flick through the leg side.

But Agarwal edged the bat straight to Tim Paine’s gloves on 74.

Day 1 Tea: India 2-123

India remained patient through this session where Agarwal-Pujara formed an 83 run partnership.

The flat bat shots where the Australian bowlers went too full or straight have executed nicely to add more runs on the board.

But Australia looked relieved just before tea with the attacking short ball play from Pat Cummins.

Keep bowling and attacking straight with a decent line to make the batsman play like how Agarwal spike edged straight to Paine.

On India’s end, Pujara remains on 33* while Virat Kohli will join in the middle after the 20-minute break.

Both Kohli & Pujara can work together to build a long partnership & score quickfire runs going into Day 2.

Otherwise, if Australia can get rid of both key men, then they will be ready for a bat in the not too distant future.

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Matthew Nicholas, the founder/blogger/vlogger on Sports Benches, is an aspiring cricket player & passionate sports fanatic who lives in Sydney, Australia.

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