INDIA VS AUSTRALIA SECOND TEST -
That's stumps on day three. 68 runs came in the final session for the loss of four wickets. Australia have taken a slender lead but have only four wickets in hand. Cam Green and Pat Cummins have stalled India's charge for a series-levelling win with a resilient stand. That said, India's still in control and will hope to wipe out the tail tomorrow as quickly as possible.
Australia 121/6 after 59 Overs: Bumrah and Ashwin back to bowling in tandem. India trying to wrap this up today. Australia are still 10 runs behind India at the moment.
Australia 119/6 after 56 Overs : Bumrah has been brought back into the attack as expected. Can Green and Cummins hold off India today? They trail by just 12 runs after Green and Cummins got stuck into Jadeja's last over.
Australia 108/6 after 53 Overs: You'd imagine it is just a matter of time before India get another one here. Rahane has persisted with Siraj for now but how long before he turns to Bumrah for the kill?
Australia 104/6 after 50 Overs : Pat Cummins has joined Cameron Green. Jadeja and Siraj are on the hunt here. They are eating away at the deficit here but it's the wickets column that will be a concern for Australia.
Australia 99/5 after 47 Overs: GONE! Md. Siraj has struck with the first ball of his new spell. Travis Head is caught at slip. Australia in all sorts of trouble. Tim Paine joins Cam Green. Siraj has been so impressive in his debut Test. Has run in hard and bowled with great intent. Kudos to Rahane too for always being on the prowl for wickets. Excellent bowling changes too.
Australia 98/4 after 44 Overs: GONE ! Jadeja has ended Wade's resistance by trapping him in front. Wade reviews but in vain. It is three reds and Australia have lost another one and more importantly, a set batsman. Just what India wanted. Wade goes for 40. Cameron Green joins Head. Australia still trail by 33 runs.
Australia 95/3 after 41 Overs : Bumrah has been taken off. Jadeja replaces him. So, dual spin attack from India: Ashwin and Jaddu. There seemed like there was a caught behind chance of Travis Head off Ashwin's bowling that Rishabh Pant failed to collect. Australia, meanwhile, will be mighty pleased if they don't lose one more wicket till stumps.
Australia 89/3 after 38 Overs: Extended spells for Bumrah and Ashwin after the break. India clearly feel if they can get one more wicket here, they can break open this game. Good, aggressive thinking from Rahane. Australia trail by 42 runs.
Australia 81/3 after 35 Overs: Big wicket for India right after tea. Smith's poor run with the bat continues as Bumrah continues calling the shots with the ball. He could've had two in two with a snorter of a bouner but Head gloved it over gully. This has been a good innings from Matthew Wade; has curbed his natural attacking instincts and looked to spend time at the crease. Just want Australia want at this stage. He was hit on the back of the helmet by a Bumrah bouncer and immediately called for a new one. He is fine and ready to continue.
Australia 71/2 after 32 Overs : Not as much turn or bounce as there was on the first day but Ashwin has kept a tight leash on the batsmen. He wants to set up Smith and is trying to bowl all six balls to him but the Australian No. 4 has managed to rotate the strike well so far. Bumrah and Ashwin, India's best bowling pair, operational after the break.
Australia 66/2 after 29 Overs : Smith on strike. Two slips in place. He gets off strike with a quick single. Pitch has eased up. No lateral movement or swing on offer. Tight start from Bumrah. Just one off it in the end.
Welcome back after the break. Umesh Yadav is still off the field. Bumrah will start proceedings.
TEA: A shared session. Maybe Australia will be more confident of the two now that it has some runs under its belt. Two wickets have gone down - one of a struggling Burns and another crucial one of Labuschagne. Wade looks to be in decent touch and Ashwin seems to be bothering Smith a tad bit, as of now. We still await an official word regarding Umesh's injury.
Australia 65/2 after 28 Overs: Smith survives a close call after flicking one just short of the leg gully. Woah! Ashwin almost had him yet again... Wade, meanwhile, whacks a boundary through mid-on off a fuller ball from Bumrah. The 28th from Ashwin was all about Pant chirping away to glory behind the sticks, with Wade giving him a cold stare after the last ball. "A bit of the pointy needles are back," as former India pacer Ajit Agarkar pointed out post the first session.
Australia 60/2 after 25 Overs: Ashwin has started troubling Smith yet again. He is altering his pace and length now that the surface isn't providing the necessary grip to aid dramatic turn. One of the deliveries, where Smith stepped out on the front foot to nudge it across, almost snuck through. Bumrah is back into the attack for a brief burst of brute pace before tea even as there continues to be no word from the dressing room regarding Umesh's fitness.
Australia 53/2 after 22 Overs: Wade has been pretty subdued when it comes to countering Ashwin. There is an LBW appeal again but Ash seemed to be the only enthusiastic customer on this occasion. Even the normally-overexcited Pant remained silent. Wade uses his wrists to work away a fuller and straighter delivery from Siraj in the next and thanks to MCG's humongous dimensions ends up running four. Wade adds a couple, sweeping one through the gap at deep square leg, in the 22nd.
Australia 44/2 after 19 Overs: Siraj is bowling a lot shorter and sticking to the channels around off. The Hyderabad pacer is looking to offer nothing to Wade to work with. But as soon as some width is gifted, Wade hangs back and punches it through point to pick up four runs.
India wastes a review - another instance where Rahane wasn't too willing to go for a double-check. This was pitching miles outside leg. The side can't let emotions play spoilsport.
Australia 38/1 after 16 Overs: Nervy, nervy... Talk about charmed lives; Labuschagne is living life on the edge. Ashwin will be repenting the idea of not having a leg slip after the ball lobs up, hitting Labuschagne on his gloves but falls in a safe zone. Runs continue to come thick and fast, in the meantime. Rahane goes upstairs, quite reluctantly, after Siraj gets one to crash just above Labuschagne's pads. Looked to be going over, initially, but the ball tracker flashes "umpire's call" again. He gets a top-edge of the very next ball and it lands in no man's land near backward square leg.
Australia 28/1 after 13 Overs: Bumrah to continue with two slips, a gully and leg gully in place. Labuschagne is, however, undeterred as he continues with the blockathon. Ashwin returns and there seemed to be half-a-chance when Labuschagne tried to sneak in a quick single. However, a misfield at short cover by Siraj ensures that not only Labuschagne completes that single, but he also comes back for a second. Siraj replaces Bumrah and keeps nagging away outside the line of off to concede only a run off the 13th. We'll have a short drinks break.
Australia 21/1 after 10 Overs: Oh no! That's not a good sign... Umesh is hobbling out of the ground with the physio. He seems to have pulled something in an awkward follow-through. Hope it is just a cramp and he is out charging in again shortly from now. Mohammed Siraj will complete the remainder of the over.
And bam! Labuschagne welcomes Bumrah with a boundary off an overpitched delivery the very next over. Spin has been introduced early, with Ravichandran Ashwin to do the honours. The Tamil Nadu spinner bowling to the left-handed Wade should be an interesting contest to look forward to. Three runs come off the last.
Australia 13/1 after 7 Overs: "No run!" calls from Labuschagne are back echoing at the MCG. Umesh is looking better today - better lines; top of off or just on the fourth stump. "He could bowl fuller," reckons fast-bowling legend Glenn McGrath. Both batsmen are dealing in quick singles at the moment. Can India afford to allow too many of those?
Australia 6/1 after 4 Overs: Close! Burns survives with a dive at the non-striker's end. Might have as well started walking if that had been a direct hit. Bumrah resumes with an unplayable toe-crusher, that sees the whole of the Indian team go up in unison. A brief round-table followed after the umpire didn't seem interested with Rahane and Ashwin seemingly satisfied enough to go upstairs. "Umpire's call," flashes the giant screen as India retains its review.
Australia 0/0 after 1 Over: Australia openers Matthew Wade and Joe Burns stride in. Jasprit Bumrah has the new ball in hand. And Wade finds himself in a bit of trouble off the very first delivery, which crashes onto his pads. Ball tracker shows this, pitching outside leg, would have gone on to hit the stumps. A brilliant delivery had it been a right hander, one might say! A maiden over to start with.
LUNCH: India has been bowled out for 326 but more importantly, it has a lead of 131. Although the conditions seem to have eased out, will still be an uphill task for an Australian batting line-up short on confidence.
India 323/7 after 113 Overs: Mitchell Starc is out of the attack. Josh Hazlewood replaces him with 15 minutes to go for lunch. Despite that short-ball barrage, Umesh and Ashwin have not thrown in the towel yet. Let's not forget Ashwin has four Test hundreds, so he can bat. Umesh loves using the long handle. The lead is now 128.
India 316/7 after 110 Overs: Starc is trying persistently with the short-ball ploy. Ashwin copped one on the chest when he tried to clear his front leg and pull but missed. He looked in discomfort and the physio had to be summoned. But he is fine now. Meanwhile, Umesh brought out the big slog sweep against Nathan Lyon and got four for it.
India 306/7 after 107 Overs: Starc stuck with his short ball ploy and it paid dividends in the form of Ravindra Jadeja's dismissal. The line and length have been impeccable too. Umesh Yadav has joined Ravichandran Ashwin at the crease. India's lead is 111.
India after 303/6 after 104 Overs : Cloud cover's gone in Melbourne. The sun's out. Starc is back into the attack. He bowled from around the wicket to Jadeja with Short leg, leg slip and fine leg in place. It will be interesting to see Jadeja's approach now that he is batting with Ashwin - running between the wickets will be an area Jadeja will perhaps be wary of given Ashwin isn't the quickest between the wickets. In the meantime, Jadeja has pulled a short ball from Nathan Lyon for four.
India 296/6 after 101 Overs : What a tragic end to a masterclass. It had to be a run out to get rid of Rahane, who blunted everything that Australia threw at him. Anyway, a potentially match-deciding knock that from the Indian skipper. Meanwhile, Jadeja has reached his fifty with a single off Cummins. India's lead crosses 100 as Ashwin joins Jadeja.
India 293/5 after 98 Overs: The pitch looks fine and there are no demons in it except for the occasional extra bounce. There hasn't been much swing for Cummins or Starc, allowing the batsmen to settle in easily. Jadeja has been targeted with a barraege of bouncers but he is holding his own. Nathan Lyon has been introduced into the attack inside the first 30 minutes of play; he replaces Starc.
India 290/5 after 95 Overs: Australia very conscious of India's lead, hence the field is spread. Cummins and Starc are bowling in tandem this morning. Meanwhile, Rahane is batting outside his crease to Starc; he hits a length ball from the left-arm seamer imperiously through extra cover for three while Jadeja's outside edge off Cummins snuck through for four. The lead is nearing 100.
INDIA 279/5 after 92 Overs: Out come the Australian fielders. Jadeja and Rahane are at the crease. Rahane will take strike. Starc with the ball. A lone in slip in place. Rahane gets the day rolling with a brace.
Good morning everyone. We are all set for action to resume on day three. India start in front. The 104-run partnership between Jadeja and Rahane has given the visitor a healthy 82-run lead. Rahane, of course, led the way with a brilliant 100, his 12th in Test cricket and first as India captain. What's day three got in store for us? Let's find out.
Day 2 Recap
Resuming on its overnight tally of 36 for 1, India advanced to 277 for 5 to hold an overall lead of 82 runs, with skipper Ajinkya Rahane's unbeaten 104 the stand-out innings of the match so far. Here's the full report here - READ
TOSS UPDATE : Australia won the toss and elected to bat first.
This is the 100th Test between Australia and India. Australia have won 43 and India 28. There has been just one tie and 27 draws. England is the only other team that has played more than 100 or more Tests against India.
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