Sydney: Pujara grinded his way to a 176-ball 50 but kept India in the game during the first session as he shared a 53-run fifth-wicket partnership with Rishabh Pant.
However, post-lunch, after Pant got hit on his left hand and was dismissed, Pujara was out caught behind as he edged a delivery from Cummins to wicketkeeper Tim Paine.
“The ball which I got was one of the best balls of this series. I felt I couldn’t have done anything better, even if I was batting on 100 or double hundred, I don’t think I could have survived that ball which kicked from back of the length. I had to play that ball. There was extra bounce. So it was just one ball which was really good and unfortunately I couldn’t get away from that. You have to accept it,” said Pujara while speaking to the media after the match. “Cummins is the No. 1 Test bowler. He is proving that again and again. He is coming hard even on this track, where there is not much help… He has a better idea of this wicket, sometimes he has bowled unplayable deliveries like the one that got me today. That delivery could have got any other batter.”
The India No. 3 said that Pant’s dismissal impacted the Indian innings as until then they were in a comfortable position.
“I thought losing Rishabh Pant was the moment that turned it around. We were in a comfortable position till then. We were 180-odd for four and doing well. Things turned around when Rishabh got out and then I got out. Our aim was to get close to 330-340. Yes, we missed out somewhere there. Losing Ajinkya Rahane earlier in the first session was a big blow but we recovered from there and there was a good partnership with Rishabh,” added Pujara.