Promising start for Australia in third Test
Mohali: Australia produced their best opening partnership of the series as the visitors reached 109 for no loss at lunch on the second day of the third and penultimate cricket Test against India here today.
David Warner led Australia's promising start with an unbeaten knock of 54 while Ed Cowan was giving him company on 43 after 36 overs had been bowled at the Punjab Cricket Association Stadium, where the opening day of the match was washed out due to a heavy downpour.
This, incidentally, is also Australia's best partnership for the first wicket on this ground, eclipsing the 87-run stand set by Shane Watson and Simon Katich back in 2010.
Warner completed his seventh half-century off 105 balls after spending 127 minutes at the crease. He hit eight fours while Cowan found the fence five times.
There was a chance for Ravindra Jadeja to dismiss Warner right after he completed his fifty when he induced an edge from the left-hander, only to see the ball fly past between wicketkeeper Mahendra Dhoni and Virat Kohli, positioned at the first slip.
Opting to bat after skipper Michael Clarke won the toss for the third in the series, Australia were served well by the two openers, even as the Indian bowlers looked for wickets on a surface that is likely to assist the spinners over the next few days.
While Ishant Sharma and Bhuvneshwar never looked threatening, the spinners Ravichandran Ashwin and Pragyan Ojha are expected to play vital roles as the match progresses.
It was a departure from the norm as far as the wicket was concerned as the PCA is well-documented for assisting the quicker bowlers.
Seeking to make a fightback after two reverses in the first two Tests in Chennai and Hyderabad respectively, Australia wouldn't complain though as they ensured that they go into the lunch with all their wickets intact in this must-win encounter.