Australia 85 runs from avoiding the follow-on and trail by 234 runs heading into final day of day-night Test; Jhulan Goswami and Pooja Vastrakar take two wickets each but Ellyse Perry digs in with the bat on the day she becomes first woman to 300 wickets and 5,000 runs in internationals
Last Updated: 02/10/21 2:24pm
India Women have slim hopes of forcing victory in the day-night Test against Australia heading into the final day in Carrara.
The hosts closed day three on 143-4, still 85 runs from the follow-on target of 228 and 234 runs behind India’s 377-8 declared, which is the highest score by a visiting women’s team in Australia.
India seamers Jhulan Goswami (2-27) and Pooja Vastrakar (2-31) found plenty of movement with the pink ball, with Goswami accounting for Australia openers Beth Mooney (4) and Alyssa Healy (29).
Vastrakar, meanwhile, removed Southern Stars skipper Meg Lanning (38) and Tahlia McGrath (28) during an excellent India bowling performance, although Ellyse Perry (27no off 98) remains unbeaten at Metricon Stadium and a draw seems the likeliest outcome.
Perry had earlier become the first woman to do the double of 5,000 runs and 300 wickets in international cricket when she had Vastrakar (13) caught by Mooney at gully.
India added 101 runs in 43.1 overs to their overnight total of 276-5, during which time Australian debutant Stella Campbell, 19, made Taniya Bhatia her maiden Test wicket, caught behind by wicketkeeper Healy.
Campbell also pinned Deepti Sharma (66) lbw shortly before India’s declaration – the replays showed the delivery pitched outside leg stump but with DRS not in operation, the decision stood.
The lack of DRS went in India’s favour during the Australia innings, though, when Lanning – dropped on 17 and 32 – was out lbw to Vastrakar despite inside-edging the seamer’s nip-backer onto her pad.
Lanning’s dismissal left Australia 80-3, after Mooney had clipped Goswami onto her stumps with the score on 14 and Healy then snicked the same bowler behind to Bhatia when the hosts were on 63.
A patient Perry steadied Australia, adding 39 with McGrath for the fourth wicket and then an unbroken 24 with Ashleigh Gardner (13no) for the fifth.
India will feel they can push for the four points available for a win if they dismiss Perry early on day four but Australia will expect to secure a draw, a result which would see both sides bag two points.
Australia lead the multi-format series 4-2 after winning two of the three one-day internationals, with the one-off Test match followed by T20 internationals on October 7, 9 and 10, also in Carrara.