India declare on 622-7 as centurions Cheteshwar Pujara and Rishabh Pant put Australia’s bowlers to the sword

India declare on 622-7 as centurions Cheteshwar Pujara and Rishabh Pant put Australia's bowlers to the sword

Cheteshwar Pujara ground out a masterful 193 and Rishabh Pant smashed a magnificent unbeaten 159 as Australia’s hopes of winning the match and saving the series were washed away by a torrent of Indian runs on day two of the fourth Test on Friday.

Virat Kohli declared on 622 for seven an hour before the close of play when Ravindra Jadeja was dismissed for 81, and Usman Khawaja (5) and Marcus Harris (19) ushered Australia to stumps on 24 without loss.

Pujara came up seven runs short of his fourth double century but there can be little doubt that his nine-hour, 373-ball knock will almost certainly deliver India’s first Test series victory in Australia.

After a beautifully-crafted innings, Pujara went with a whimper rather than a bang before tea, scooping the ball back down the wicket to be caught and bowled by off-spinner Nathan Lyon.

The 30-year-old’s centuries in Adelaide and Melbourne went a long way to giving India a 2-1 series lead and there was relief as well as admiration in the standing ovation he received from the crowd when he finally headed back to the Member’s Stand.

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