Hayden, Ponting lead Australian fight-back(Tea Report)October 31st, 2008 - 5:11 pm ICT by IANS
New Delhi, Oct 31 (IANS) Australian top-order batsmen dug in their heels to reach 237 for two at tea on the third day of the third cricket Test at Feroz Shah Kotla here Friday.The Australians survived a torrid session, though they lost only one wicket, that of the key batsman Matthew Hayden (83). Skipper Ricky Ponting (61) and reliable Michael Hussey (13) were at the crease. The visitors still trail by 376 runs.
However, the India’s skiper Anil Kumble had to be taken to a hospital after he injured the little finger of his left hand attempting a difficult catch of Hayden and the gash needed stitches.
Kumble, who boasts of an enviable record at Kotla, was bowling well in tandem with Amit Mishra, who kept the batsmen guessing with his varying flight and spin.
Virender Sehwag got the only wicket of the session when he trapped Hayden plumb in front of the wicket. The part-time off-spinner extracted good turn from the wicket and kept the batsmen in check.
Hayden might have a good record against India, but so far he had been a pale shadow of his self in the series. The left-hander made amends Friday reaching the fifty-run mark batting aggressively. The burly opener hardly looked comfortable during his four-hour stay (154 balls, 13×4, 1×6).
After Hayden, Ponting carried the fight, getting to his half century in 101 balls with eight fours. Just before the end of the session a charged up Ishant Sharma got past Hussey’s blade on a number of occasion.
In the morning Mishra provided India the breakthrough after Australian openers survived a probing spell from the fast bowlers. The leg-spinner crashed through the defence of Simon Katich (64) with one that turned sharply when the opener went for a big hit. The dismissal ended the 123-run resistance of Katich and Hayden.