The third Test between Australia and India has been nothing short of a rollercoaster ride, with the drama continuing on a nail-biting day two.
Australian off-spinner Nathan Lyon has delivered a breathtaking performance, claiming eight wickets to leave India in tatters.
Lyon’s eight-wicket haul is no small feat, making him the only Australian spinner in Test history with multiple eight-wicket hauls. Even the legendary Shane Warne couldn’t achieve this.
But India’s Cheteshwar Pujara has provided his team with a glimmer of hope for an unlikely comeback victory.
The Aussies will need to chase down 76 for victory on day three, after India was bowled out for a mere 163 in their second innings.
The morning session saw the tourists being bowled out for 197, giving Australia a first-innings lead of 88.
Ravichandran Ashwin and Umesh Yadav each took three wickets during a frantic 29-minute collapse.
The pitch had seemingly settled down after Wednesday’s carnage, but less turn and variable bounce on offer for India’s spinners made it challenging.
However, veteran spinner Ravichandran Ashwin snared the first breakthrough after the drinks break, with Handscomb caught at short leg for 19.
Green departed the following over for 21 after paceman Umesh Yadav struck the all-rounder on the back pad.
The ball from Yadav just straightened a touch off the seam and had Green playing the wrong line as tried to work through the leg side.
Yadav continued wreaking havoc with the old ball, sending Mitchell Starc’s off-stump flying while Ashwin trapped Alex Carey on the pads for 3.
Todd Murphy departed in almost identical fashion to Starc, with Yadav getting the left-hander’s off-stump to cartwheel towards the slip cordon, gone for a duck.
Ashwin wrapped up the innings by bowling Lyon for 5, with the Australian tailender botching a sweep shot. The visitors had lost 6-11 in 34 eventful deliveries.
In reply, Indians fared disappointingly as they fell to a combination of bad cricketing shots and some brilliant catching.
Shubman Gill fell to a wild heave across the line to Lyon in the first over after lunch.
Rohit Sharma misjudged the length going back to a full ball from Lyon.
Virat Kohli played a reckless cross-bat shot off the back foot to Kuhnemann, before Ravindra Jadeja was unable to get his bat in front of his pad as he was trapped plumb in front by Lyon.
Only Pujara stood firm, battling the conditions with his trademark doggedness while grabbing the occasional boundary.
After the tea break, Shreyas Iyer smacked three emphatic boundaries and two sixes to send a scare through the Australian camp, but Smith responded smartly by turning to Starc.
This was a master stroke as Iyer fell to a superb diving catch from Khawaja at mid-wicket.
Indian wicketkeeper Srikar Bharat (3) followed shortly afterwards as Lyon picked up his fourth of the innings with a quicker ball that beat the outside edge and smashed into the stumps.
Pujara brought up his 35th Test half-century from 108 balls, playing a lone hand but sadly, he too was dismissed.
The Indian batter flicked a delivery down the leg side, and the Australian skipper, Smith lunged low to his right, taking a stunning one-handed grab.
The Indians folded up for 163 and Australia need just 76 runs to complete a victory.
India 109 & 163 (Pujara 59, Lyon 8-64) lead Australia 197 (Khawaja 60, Jadeja 4-78, Umesh 3-12) by 75 runs