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BGT 2023, IND v AUS, 4th Test, Day 4: India maximise probability of win/draw with 91-run lead

Updated: Mar 13, 2023

Border Gavaskar Trophy 2022-23, India vs Australia, 4th Test, Day 4: Virat Kohli's 28th Test century (186*) take India to 571 with 91-run lead. Australia trail by 88 runs at the stumps.

Border Gavaskar Trophy 2022-23, India vs Australia, 4th Test, Day 4_ Virat Kohli raises his bat as he smashes 28th Test century_ Walking Wicket (Images_ ©BCCI_Twitter)
Kohli raises his bat as he smashes 28th Test century (Images: ©BCCI/Twitter)

Brief Scores: Australia 3-0 & 480 (Khawaja 180, Green 114, Ashwin 6-91) trail India 571 (Kohli 186, Gill 128, Murphy 3-113, Lyon 3-151) by 88 runs at Stumps on Day 4

India started the penultimate day of the fourth Test in Ahmedabad at a score of 289/3 and still had a mountain to climb with a first innings deficit of 191 runs. Virat Kohli who made his 29th Test half-century was the overnight batter at 59* along with all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja.

India scored 282 runs in the day and the star of the day was undoubtedly Virat Kohli (186) who smashed his much anticipated 28th Test ton and, in the process, allowed his side to gain a lead over Australia in the first innings. He got able support first from KS Bharat (44) and then from Axar Patel (79) who continued his impressive batting show as India amassed 571 runs in their first innings.

Australia’s bowlers were made to toil on another hot day, as they stayed on the field for almost the whole day.

India dominate proceedings on Day 4

After a couple of slow yet batting-friendly days in the Test match, the fourth day helped the Test move forward at a brisk pace and we are in for an exciting end to the series on the final day of the Test leg of Australia’s tour of India. A 28th Test ton by former skipper Virat Kohli was the icing on cake, while Axar Patel’s counter-attacking innings of 79 from just 113 balls put India ahead in the Test match.

Australia, at the end of Day 4, trail India by 88 runs with all their second innings wickets in the shed.

Let’s take a look at the session-wise progress of the game on Day 3 in the Ahmedabad Test between India and Australia.

Session 1: Australia’s spinners and skipper Steven Smith keep things tight

India took a cautious approach, scoring only 34 runs in the first hour of play. Ravindra Jadeja did try to give his team the much-needed impetus to the innings but he mistimed one of his attacking strokes off Todd Murphy to be sent back for 28.

Virat Kohli though looked in touch, however, he could add only 29 runs in the morning session. Kohli, in the company of wicketkeeper-batter KS Bharat took India to lunch at 362/4 adding 73 runs for the loss of Jadeja’s wicket.

Session 2: Virat Kohli’s 28th Test ton help India race ahead

India still trailed by 118 runs at lunch, and came in with an attacking mindset in the post-lunch session. KS Bharat took the attack to pacer Cameron Green who used the short ploy against the batters. However, India’s keeper batter was up to the task as he smashed Green for two sixes and a boundary in the same over. This gave India much needed momentum and eventually Virat Kohli also began to score with more ease.

Bharat eventually fell, after making a useful contribution of 44 runs, to Nathan Lyon and from then it was the Kohli-Axar show. The former soon brought up his 28th Test ton, first in over three years and after 41 Test innings. Axar started to dominate the spinners like he has done of late and the pair brought up their 50-run stand in 70 balls. India motored along nicely as they went into the tea interval at 472/5 with Kohli unbeaten at 135 and Axar at 38.

Border Gavaskar Trophy 2022-23, India vs Australia, 4th Test, Day 4_ Axar Patel, Virat Kohli added 162-run for 6th wicket in Ahmedabad Test _ Walking Wicket (Images_ ©BCCI_Twitter)
Axar-Kohli added 162-run for 6th wicket in Ahmedabad Test (Images: ©BCCI/Twitter)

Session 3: Belligerent Axar Patel and Virat Kohli give India 91-run lead

With India being just 8 runs behind and two set batters at the crease, the platform was set for them to get ahead in this contest and get a substantial first innings lead over Australia. Things went on as per India’s plan as the duo brought up their 100-run stand with Virat reaching his eleventh 150-plus score in Tests and Axar getting to his 4th Test half-century (third of this series).

Axar’s fast paced counter-attacking knock propelled India past the 500-run mark and then the 550 mark in real quick time. But against the run of play, Axar Patel lost his wicket after a well-compiled 79 runs from just 113 balls which put India in a relatively good position in this Test match.

But the fact that Shreyas Iyer was unavailable to bat due to a lower back spasm and lower-order batting collapse, Virat Kohli was left stranded in his 180s and eventually was the last man to perish after his marathon knock of 186 from 364 deliveries. India ended their innings at 571 with a first innings lead of 91 runs.

For Australia, Travis Head and Matthew Kuhnemann opened as a result of injury to regular opener Usman Khawaja; they saw out the tricky 6 overs without fuss.

What to Expect on Day 5

We can expect an an interesting Day 5 of Test cricket in what will be the grand finale of this series. Both teams have had their moments and India can think that they are out of danger of losing this Test match. They, however, can make inroads in the morning session and probably trigger a batting collapse in Australia’s second innings.

Australia will take heart from the fact that the pitch is still good to bat on, and there are no demons in it. But if the history of the sides is anything to go by, we may witness some twists and an exciting finish to this Test series between the two cricketing giants.

Statistical Highlights from India vs Australia, 4th Test, Day 4, Ahmedabad

  • With the wicket of KS Bharat, Nathan Lyon (55) went past Derek Underwood of England as the top wicket-taker among overseas bowlers in India.

  • This is Virat Kohli’s 8th Test ton against Australia, and now has the joint second-most Test centuries against Australia along with Sunil Gavaskar. Sachin Tendulkar holds the record of most Test centuries against the Kangaroos with 11 hundreds.

  • Kohli now has 16 international hundreds against Australia in 89 games across formats. This is the second-most by a batter against Australia after Tendulkar’s tally of 20 tons against the same opponents.

  • Nathan Lyon (65 overs) overtook Alan Davidson (57.3) to take the second spot in the list of Australia bowlers with most overs in an innings in India. Steve O'Keefe bowled the most overs (77) at Ranchi in 2017.

  • The 162-run stand for the sixth wicket between the pair of Virat Kohli and Axar Patel is now India’s third-highest stand for this wicket against Australia in Tests.

  • Kohli’s 186 is his highest Test score against Australia to go past his previous best score of 169 at Melbourne in BGT 2014-15.

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