Bengaluru, March 6: Stating that the 2nd Test between India and Australia was in the balance, hosts' batting coach Sanjay Bangar feels there could be some "exhilarating stuff" in the last two days of the contest here at M Chinnaswamy Stadium.
India were bundled out for 189 on the opening day of the five-day match on Saturday (March 4). However, they have now fought back in the 2nd innings to hold a 126-run lead with 6 wickets remaining.
On Monday (March 6), the 3rd day of the Test, half centuries from KL Rahul (51) and Cheteshwar Pujara (79 not out) took the hosts to 213/4 in 72 overs. Earlier, Australia were bowled out for 276, with a first innings lead of 87.
India did not lose any wicket in the 3rd and final session of play. Pujara and Ajinkya Rahane (40 not out) have so far added 93 runs for the 5th wicket. This partnership, in terms of runs, is the best so far in the series for either side.
With the pitch posing a big challenge for batsmen, India are still not out of the woods and will be looking to stretch the lead past the 200-run mark and even further.
When Bangar was asked about the state of the match after the end of day's play today, he said no team was ahead at the moment.
"The game hangs very much in the balance. We have to bat really well in the next two sessions and take it from there," Bangar told reporters.
"We have fought really well in the last few days. After having the setback of not scoring runs in the first innings, clawing our back, the team has stuck together, not letting the game run away from. Coming back from the second session we didn't lose any wickets and consolidated the third session. Overall I think, What lies ahead could be exhilarating stuff," he added.
Bangar was asked what target India were looking to set the visitors and he refused to pick a number.
"Cannot put a number to the runs that are required or the overs that are required or set any target because we know that there are two really competitive sides fighting to get that advantage and we are only looking to come out tomorrow, have a good first session and take it from there," the former India opener said.
Australia lead the 4-match series 1-0 after having won the opening Test by 333 runs in Pune. The 3rd Test starts in Ranchi on March 16.