Wriddhiman Saha plays down altercation with Josh Hazlewood
India's wicketkeeper revealed the plan was to take the lead and then accelerate thereafter.
What’s the story?
One of India's heroes on day four and the architect of India’s turnaround in the third Test, wicketkeeper Wriddhiman Saha spoke about the battle he had with Australian fast bowler and admitted that he has begun backing himself more as his Test career has progressed.
The wicketkeeper revealed that the seventh-wicket partnership that put India in control was planned such that the first target was to take the lead and then accelerate. Speaking at the press conference at the end of day four, Saha said the altercation with the Aussie pacer wasn’t a big deal.
Speaking about the incident, he said: “In a match, stuff like this happens. Pujara told Hazlewood to look at the score when he was batting on 180 and when Hazlewood sledged, he (Pujara) told him to just go and bowl. I also told him to go and bowl the next ball. There was nothing more than that.“
In case you didn’t know…
Wriddhiman Saha hasn’t been in great form in the ongoing Test series before he came in to bat on day three. He registered three single-digit scores, including a duck in the four innings that he played in the series so far but he put on 199 for the seventh-wicket along with Cheteshwar Pujara and not only created a record in the process but also brought up his third Test hundred to put India in control going into day 5.
In a Test match that has already seen plenty of incidents, including Virat Kohli’s shoulder injury and then Glenn Maxwell mocking Indian Test captain’s shoulder injury and Murali Vijay’s response to the incident he described as a “sportive thing”, another occurred on day four.
Fast bowlers having a go at batsman after a hard day’s toil is no surprise, especially when it is an Australian bowler in question. And that is what happened with the score at 390/6 and India creeping closer towards Australia’s target.
Saha and Hazlewood had exchanged words after the batsman came through a barrage of bouncers unscathed before he went on to become only the second Indian batsman after Pujara to score a hundred in this series. And it was Saha and India who had the last laugh after the bowler’s attempt to get under the batsman’s skin didn’t go according to plan.
When emotions run high in a high-stakes series, sometimes all you have to do is let the bat or the ball do all the talking. Wriddhiman Saha and Cheteshwar Pujara did just that as their 199-run partnership rescued India and put them in a position of strength going into the final day.