India assumed control of the third Test versus Australia on day three, as debutant Shikhar Dhawan ground the visitors to dust with a scintillating maiden hundred. After disposing of the remaining batsmen early in the morning, Dhawan and his opening partner Murali Vijay batted out the remaining two sessions to make a mockery of the Australian bowling at the PCA Stadium in Mohali. India had to face an over before lunch but the Indian openers having negotiated it easily, came out all guns blazing and obliterated the bowling in the next two sessions. It resulted in a plethora of records tumbling, almost all of them down to Dhawan alone.
He raced to his maiden Test hundred off just 85 balls, and broke the record for quickest hundred on debut by West Indian Dwayne Smith, who had used 93 balls for his ton against South Africa in 2004. Then he went pass Gundappa Vishwanath’s score of 137, the previous best for an Indian batsman on his debut, also scored against Australia at the Eden Gardens in 1969-70.
The assault on the bowling was so intense that in the first hour after tea, runs were coming in at seven per over, while the innings rate at the end of play stood at a quick 4.87. Dhawan smashed 33 fours and two sixes during his innings. At stumps, India’s score stood at 283/0 in just 58 overs. They now trail by only 125 runs and this fast clip of scoring has given them a chance to win the Test in four days, after day one was washed out. Australia are caught right on the back foot. Even if they get a couple of wickets early on day 4, India should surely look to keep attacking now, and maybe declare with a handy lead of 100 or so.
Match Timings: Mar 17, 2013 (09:00 local | 03:30 GMT | 09:00 IST)