A commanding batting display by Rohit Sharma (127) and Cheteshwar Pujara (61) propelled the Indian team to take a 171-run lead in the fourth Test match at The Oval in London. The top order of the visiting side made optimum use of the favourable batting conditions as Rohit stitched a valuable 153-run partnership for the second wicket with Cheteshwar Pujara to ensure the team end Day 3 in a commanding position.
Despite their wickets in the final session, the visiting side ended on 270/3, with Virat Kohli and Ravindra Jadeja unbeaten on 22 and 9 respectively.
With the series level 1-1, Team India started proceedings on 43/0, trailing by 56 runs in this crucial encounter. The opening combination of KL Rahul and Rohit have been in sublime form all through the series. The duo laid a solid foundation with an 83-run partnership before Rahul was undone by an away going delivery from James Anderson for 46.
Despite the setback, Rohit continued to enthral the fans with strokes all around the park and helped the team get past England's first-innings lead. Along with Cheteshwar Pujara, he accumulated the ones and the twos and smashed an occasional boundary to guide the team out of a challenging situation. En route to this 153-run vital partnership, Rohit smashed a massive hit over the fence off Moeen Ali to notch up his maiden overseas Test century.
First century outside India for the Hitman! 🔥— Sony Sports (@SonySportsIndia) September 4, 2021
He gets there with a monster six over long on!
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The duo dominated the second session of the day and ensured Team India reach 199/1 at the tea interval with a 100-run lead. With Pujara looking assured with his technique and footwork, he crafted his way to a well-compiled half-century in the final session.
However, the first over with the second new ball wreaked havoc as Ollie Robinson scalped the wickets of Rohit and Pujara. While the opening batsman was caught off the first ball at the deep square boundary as he mistimed a pull shot for a scintillating 127, Pujara edged an incoming delivery to the slip cordon for 61.
After two quick wickets, Virat Kohli and Ravindra Jadeja steadied the innings with an unbeaten 33-run stand for the fourth wicket. With the pitch set to possess plenty of challenges in the fourth innings, the visiting side will look to build on the 171-run lead on Day 4 and set up a mammoth target.