After surrendering the first Test in Adelaide by 8 wickets, India bounced back in style and defeated Tim Paine’s men by 8 wickets in Melbourne to level the series.
Going into the third Test, India got a massive boost as a fit-again Rohit Sharma returned to the fold. The right-hander has replaced struggling opener Mayank Agarwal in the playing XI. Meanwhile, fast bowler Navdeep Saini will make his Test debut in the third Test.
As far as the venue is concerned, SCG hasn’t been a happy hunting ground for India. India have played 12 Tests at this venue and managed to win only once. They won in 1978 under the leadership of Bishan Singh Bedi. Apart from this only win, Team India have lost five and drawn matches on six occasions.
Apart from the chance to go up 2-1 in the series, many members of Team India are also within touching distance of personal milestones and they could reach them in the third Test, which begins on Thursday.
Here’s a quick look at some of the approaching career milestones for the Indian cricketers:
* Cheteshwar Pujara needs 97 runs to complete 6000 runs in Tests. He has 5903 runs in 79 Tests (132 innings) to his name at an average of 47.60. Pujara, who made his Test debut in 2010 vs Australia in Bengaluru, has 18 centuries and 25 fifties under his belt
* Pujara is also 215 runs away from completing 1000 runs against Australia in Australia. He has 785 runs in 9 Tests (17 innings) to his name Down Under
* If Indian stand-in captain Ajinkya Rahane manages to guide India to a win at the SCG, he will equal former India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s record of winning his first four Test matches as a captain. So far Dhoni is the only Indian captain to have done that.
Rahane has so far captained India in three Tests, winning all three. His three wins so far have been registered against Australia (Dharamsala, 2017), Afghanistan (Bengaluru, 2018), and Australia (Melbourne, 2020).
* Rahane also needs 203 runs to complete 1000 runs against Australia in Australia. He currently has 797 Test runs to his name Down Under.
* Rahane is also just 109 runs away from completing 3000 Test runs overseas. The 32 year old has 2891 Test runs, batting overseas, in 40 Tests (71 innings)
* Rohit Sharma, who will be seen in action for the first time on the current Australia tour, needs 184 runs to complete 1000 Test runs overseas. He has 816 runs in 18 Tests (33 innings) overseas to his name so far