India need to stand tall against a relentless Australian bowling attack

3 things India need to do right on Day 3 of WTC final

On the second day of the World Test Championship final, Australia's bowlers effectively highlighted India's errors. Taking advantage of the favorable conditions on the Oval pitch, Australian fast bowlers settled into a perfect length, seizing control of the match. By the end of the second day's play, India found themselves struggling at 151 for 5 in response to Australia's first-innings total of 469.

While the majority of the damage was inflicted by the fast bowlers, Nathan Lyon also picked up a wicket. Lyon dismissed Ravindra Jadeja, India's top-scorer (48) so far, with a dipping and turning off-break that resulted in a nick to the first slip. The breakthrough came around 15 minutes before the close of play, terminating a significant 71-run partnership for the fifth wicket between Jadeja and Ajinkya Rahane.


India still have a mountain to climb and they would want to believe they can get out of this hole.

We take a look at 3 things India need to do right on Day 3 of the WTC final.

#3 KS Bharat needs to dig in

KS Bharat has to step up with the bat

There is no Rishabh Pant, and KS Bharat has to step up. In their last match in England, India were in a similar situation when Rishabh Pant launched a counter-attack and along with Ravindra Jadeja, took India to a respectable score.


Now, Bharat is no Pant, but his first-class numbers are decent. Day 3 has always been the best day to bat and Bharat will have to buckle down, put a price tag on his wicket, and bat long into the day. India have already lost Ravindra Jadeja and the onus will be on the wicketkeeper-batter to step up and make use of this opportunity.

#2 Not loose wickets in the first session

Ajinkya Rahane holds the key

When Ajinkya Rahane and KS Bharat walk out, they have to be resilient and ensure India does not lose any wickets in the first session. A wicketless session will certainly infuse some hope in the dressing room and as the sun beats down, the Australian attack too will start to tire.

Batting against the old Dukes ball has been easier over the last two seasons in England. As such, the No. 5 and 6 have averaged 53.08 here since the beginning of the 2022 season. This should encourage India and the two overnight batters. It will not be easy, but nothing in Test cricket comes easy. They have to forget about the scoreboard and focus on not losing wickets.

#1 Rahane needs a redemption

Can Rahane complete his redemption?

The last time Ajinkya Rahane cracked a ton in Tests, it was against Australia at the MCG, where India came from behind to clinch a win. The right-hander has looked largely untroubled and he needs to use all his experience to shoulder the innings.

During his stay on the crease, Rahane faced a couple of challenging moments that required the physiotherapist's intervention. First, he was hit on his fingers by a delivery from Pat Cummins, necessitating medical attention. He was then hit on the helmet when he missed a hook shot off Cameron Green. He has seen all this and much more before, and if his redemption has to be complete, this is the innings he needs to stand up in.

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Edited by
Parag Jain
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