New Delhi: Rohit Sharma-led Team India is in a tough spot in the World Test Championship Final against Australia being played at the Kennington Oval. Australia at the end of day 3 have gained a lead of 296 runs and to have India on the ropes, to win the WTC Final 2023, the Indian team need to break a 121-year-old jinx.
The highest successful fourth innings run chase at The Oval is 263 runs and it was done by England back in 1902 against Australia. Australia’s lead have already surpassed this and the way the game is progressing, they are likely to put a target somewhere around 400 runs.
Now, in order to win the red-ball glory and the ICC Test Mace, Team India need to break this 121-year-old record. This will be a mountain of climb considering the top-order collapse suffered by the Indian team earlier in the test match.
Shardul Thakur Believes India Can Even Chase 450 Runs
India all-rounder Shardul Thakur told the media at the end of third day’s play in the World Test Championship final against Australia that India can chase 450 or more in the fourth innings of the match.
At draw of stumps on Day 3, Australia were 123/4, leading by 296 runs, with Marnus Labuschagne (41*) and Cameron Green (7*) holding fort.
Answering a question, Thakur said: “Cricket is a funny game. You never know how much we can chase.”
Thakur, however, described the wicket as “under prepared”.
“There is an area (at the Vauxhall End side of the pitch) from where the ball is rising. Today some balls also kept low,” he said.
On Ajinkya Rahane not fielding after top-scoring with 89, Thakur disclosed he was hit on a finger while batting, but stressed that “it doesn’t look too bad”.
Speaking to the media, Australia seamer Mitchell Starc praised Rahane’s innings, saying, “Jinx (Rahane’s nickname) played really well. A special catch (by Cameron Green) got him out. We know what a good player he is.”
Asked about dismissing Virat Kohli with a bouncer which the batsman nicked on Day 2, he responded: “It came out well and I got lucky. I just ran in and hit the wicket.”
Starc felt the pitch began to “play tricks” on the third day.
“With sunshine predicted tomorrow, the wicket might play more tricks,” he concluded.
(with IANS inputs)