London: Tight bowling spells from the pace trio of Mohammed Siraj, Mohammed Shami and Shardul Thakur helped India make a comeback in the first session of the second day of the ICC World Test Championship final against Australia at The Oval on Thursday, with Aussies going from 327/3 to 422/7.
At lunch, Alex Carey was batting on 22 and Pat Cummins on 2. Australia started the day at the overnight score of 327/3 with Steve Smith (95*) and Travis Head (146*) unbeaten.
The duo started the second day with positive intent and Smith smashed two straight fours in the first over of the day to bring up his 31st Test hundred, his seventh in England.
Head also brought up his 150 in just 164 balls. Australia brought up the 350-run mark in the 90th over.
Mohammed Siraj struck early in the session to give India the much-needed breakthrough. Head was caught behind by KS Bharat for 163 (174 balls). His knock consisted of 25 fours and a six. Australia were 361/4.
Mohammed Shami dismissed Cameron Green for six runs as he was caught by Shubman Gill at slips. Next, it was Shardul Thakur who got the key wicket of Smith for 121 (268 balls). Australia were 387/6 in 98.1 overs and crossed the 400-run mark in 102.5 overs.
Axar Patel, who had come to the field as a substitute, made an immediate impact by running out Mitchell Starc for just five runs. India continued to build pressure on the lower order with their pace, but Alex Carey and skipper Pat Cummins put up some solid resistance to it carrying Australia to the lunch without further damage.
Australia had ended the first day on a high at 327/3 with Steve Smith (95*) and Travis Head (146*) unbeaten. India had restricted Australia to 76/3 but Head-Smith put on a solid partnership to put Australia in a strong position.
Brief Scores: Australia: 402/7 (Travis Head 163, Steve Smith 121, Shardul Thakur 2/83). (ANI)