India batsman Cheteshwar Pujara registered his 18th Test ton on the first day of the fourth Test against Australia in Sydney. The right-handed batsman came on to the pitch in the 2nd over after KL Rahul was dismissed by Josh Hazlewood, and then continued to bat throughout the day. In the process, Pujara kept one end secured while the wickets fell on the other – Mayank Agarwal (77), Virat Kohli (23) and Ajinkya Rahane (18).
The 30-year-old, who has been known for his slow run rate in the longest format, once again toiled Australian bowlers and frustrated them with his innings. An obvious irritated Nathan Lyon, in one of the overs, asked Pujara if he is bored. “Aren’t you bored, yet?” the Aussie spinner was heard speaking on the stump microphone.
lyon_chirp_edit_0 from Bob Paine on Vimeo.
By the end of day’s play, Pujara played 250 balls and scored 130 runs. Lyon, on the other hand, had to bowl 29 overs and managed to get just one wicket.
Pujara has joined the elite list comprising of Sunil Gavaskar and Virat Kohli, of Indian players scoring three or more hundreds in a Test series in Australia. He also has played over 1,135 balls in the series, surpassing the previous best of Sunil Gavaskar (1033), to become the Indian player having faced most deliveries in a series Down Under.
It is not the first time Pujara has frustrated the Australian attack. In the 3rd Test, he had played 309 deliveries to reach 106 in the first innings where the hosts were made to bowl a total of 169.4 overs.