Twitter Reactions: Cheteshwar Pujara and Virat Kohli lead India's fightback at Headingley after Rohit's 59

Pujara is unbeaten on 91 while Kohli is only five runs away from reaching his first half-century of the tour.

Cheteshwar Pujara and Virat Kohli
Cheteshwar Pujara and Virat Kohli. (Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images)

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Alas! Team India had something going for them in the ongoing third Test against England at Headingley. They conceded a whopping lead of 354 runs in the first innings thanks to a lacklustre effort with the bat on Day 1. But in the second essay, the visitors put on a much better batting display making good use of conditions. England bowlers swung the ball much more but Indian batsmen were up for the task this time around.

At the start of the day though, India’s bowlers had a job to do. England were eight down and there was a possibility of tail wagging. But Mohammed Shami and Jasprit Bumrah made light work of it and bundled the hosts out for 432 runs to restrict the lead to 354 runs.

Drizzle delayed the start of India’s second innings but clouds cleared soon for the play to start. Then began the start of a huge fightback for the rest of the day. The duo of KL Rahul and Rohit Sharma were back to leaving the deliveries outside the off-stump to deny England any early wicket.

Rohit Sharma and Pujara fight strongly

Rahul looked troubled on occasions and even looked uncomfortable against the incoming delivery to eventually edge on to the slips where Jonny Bairstow took a sensational one-handed catch. England were ecstatic to strike at the stroke of lunch and would’ve hoped to pick more wickets in the next two sessions. But it wasn’t to be.

Rohit Sharma and Cheteshwar Pujara had other ideas. They weathered the storm and it was obvious that the conditions were easy to bat on. Both of them made sure to keep England bowlers at bay and played some brilliant strokes. Pujara, surprisingly, had a refreshing approach to his batting as he punished bad balls constantly.

England were so desperate to pick wickets that they got too straight at times to him and India’s number three churned out a lot of boundaries on the leg-side. Rohit once again looked compact in his defense and got to yet another half-century in the series. The 82-run stand though was broken in an unfortunate way as the umpire’s call got the better of him in an lbw while he was on 59.

However, his wicket didn’t deter Pujara and skipper Virat Kohli joined him to ride home the advantage for the rest of the day. There were a few uncomfortable moments for the latter at the start of the innings but he left the ball well outside the off-stump. The duo played out the rest of the final session while also putting on an exhibition of some crisp, technically strong shots.

Bad light also played its role in the end with England bowling only spinners in the last 30 minutes or so. While Joe Root made sure they bowled 80 overs so that he could unleash James Anderson with the new ball on the fourth morning, Pujara and Kohli churned out quick runs to take India’s score to 215/2 till stumps.

Pujara is unbeaten on 91 while Kohli is only five runs away from his first half-century on this tour as the visitors still trail by 139 runs. The first hour on the fourth day will decide the game now as the new ball is due and no wonder England will straight away take it.

Here’s how Twitter reacted: