Kohli, Rahane steady India on Day 2
Half-centuries from Indian skipper and vice-skipper put India on a steady position on day 2 after early blows of the openers Kl Rahul and Murali Vijay.
After electing to bat first on day 1 in Perth Stadium, Australia ended day 1 on 277/6 after a roller coaster day on Cricket Australia’s newly built venue for the longest format of the game.
Tim Paine and Pat Cummins were the overnight batsmen and started the day 2 for the hosts. The duo had a half-century partnership and that took team total above 300 which put Australia on a commanding first innings score on board.
After a tiring hour on the morning session, Indian bowlers came into the game strongly and dismissed the Australian tail as soon as possible. That resulted in Australia bowled out for 326 in the first innings.
After rattling the Australian tail, India didn’t get the expected start from the openers as Murali Vijay was sent back by Mitchell Starc’s fierce yorker just before the lunch on day 2.
Soon after the lunch break, KL Rahul also returned to pavilion from an inswinger from Josh Hazlewood adding only two runs to the total. Cheteshwar Pujara and Virat Kohli had a slow partnership of 74 runs which made the hosts sweat out more.
Pujara was dismissed on 24 runs after facing 103 balls. Then the captain and vice-captain joined together and made the reaped the benefits from the partnership between Virat Kohli and Cheteshwar Pujara.
The duo had many rough edges and misses although they managed to hold on till the end of play on day 2. Virat Kohli once again proved his master class by scoring his tenth fifty-plus score against Aussies.
On the other end, Ajinkya Rahane also scored a vital fifty in a much-needed situation. India were 172/3 at the stumps on day 2 and still trailing by 154 runs.
Australia: 326-all out
Marcus Stoinis 70, Travis Head 58
Ishant Sharma 4/41, Hanuma Vihari 2/35
Virat Kohli 82*, Ajinkya Rahane 51*
Mitchell Starc 2/42, Josh Hazlewood 1/50