Cheteshwar Pujara scored his 18th Test ton in another marathon innings as India took control on Day 1 of the fourth Test.
By the time he got to the three-figure mark, Pujara had batted almost three entire sessions. (Image Source: BCCI Twitter)
Cheteshwar Pujara scored his 18th Test century on Thursday during the first day of the fourth Test between India and Australia. He faced 199 balls and smashed 13 fours over the course of another marathon innings. By the time he got to the three-figure mark, Pujara had batted almost three entire sessions.
He came into the middle after the dismissal of KL Rahul in the third over of the match. He then got stuck in the middle with Mayank Agarwal, who went on to score his second consecutive half-ton of the series. The pair ensured that India don’t lose any more wickets in the first session. India were 69/1 with Pujara on 16 off 59.
Agarwal took up the task of keeping the scoreboard ticking and went past his 50. But once he did, he took on Nathan Lyon. He smashed a couple of sixes and won the initial part of that battle but Lyon had the last laugh, with Agarwal holing out at long-on off him while attempting another six.
Virat Kohli came in and it looked like the pair would pick up from where they left off in the first innings at the MCG. Once again, Australia had just one wicket to boast about in the second session. Kohli did not last long in the third session and his replacement Ajinkya Rahane fell to a snorter of a delivery from Mitchell Starc, leaving their partnership just two runs away from the 50-run mark. But Pujara went about playing in his bubble and ground out an 18th Test ton.
Through the course of the innings, he crossed 1051 in terms of deliveries faced throughout the series, which is the most for him in his career. He also crossed the 400-run mark in total runs throughout the series. Towards the end of the day, his account for the series crossed 438 which was his previous best in a series home or away.