IND vs AUS, 3rd Test: Travis Head, Marnus Labuschagne Lead Australia to Memorable Win in Indore

Australia reduced their deficit in the Border- Gavaskar series to 1-2 with their resounding win in the third Test of the series in Indore on Thursday.

The Australian team romped to a dominant victory within three days, just like India had done in the previous two Tests in the campaign, thanks to the brilliance of spinners Nathan Lyon and Matthew Kuhnemann, who scalped the Indian wickets like skittles to take the visitors over the line.

Indian skipper Rohit Sharma won the toss at the Holkar Stadium and opted to bat, but his choice backfired as the touring Aussies wrapped up the host’s first innings for a low total of 109 with Virat Kohli topping the scoring charts for the home side with his 22 runs. Rohit, Shubman Gill, Umesh Yadav and Axar Patel were the other batter who crossed the two-digit run mark for India before being bundled out by Aussie spin as Kunhemann picked the batting order apart with his five-wicket haul.

Lyon was responsible for three dismissals while Toddy Murphy picked up a wicket for himself.

Australia went into bat and posted a score of 197 runs riding on a Usman Khawaja half-century. The opener’s 60 proved crucial to the visitors, who also had contributions from Marnus Labuschange (31), Steve Smith (26), Cameroon Green (21) and Peter Handscomb (19) before being wrapped up by the Indian bowling unit, once again headed by spinners Ravindra Jadeja, who scalped four, and Ravichandran Ashwin, who dismissed three batters.

Umesh Yadav picked the other three wickets to close out the Australian innings as India trailed by 88 runs.

India fared slightly better in their second innings, but not enough to take the game away from the touring side as Lyon ran through the Indian lineup in his eight-wicket masterclass.

Cheteshwar Pujara’s patient 59 off 142 deliveries saved India from blushes as the wickets kept tumbling. Shreyas Iyer chipped in with 26 runs off his willow, but, all the effort from the batters could only carry Indian to a score of 163, and Australia were given the simple task of chasing down the target of 75.

India started the third day positively as Ashwin dismissed Khawaja for a duck, but Labuschange and Travis Head stood tall to score 28 and 49 runs respectively to register a 9-wicket win for the visitors over the hosts in Madhya Pradesh.

The win was made all the sweeter for the Aussies, who sealed their qualification to the Final of the ICC World Test Championship.