Watch the Boxing Day Test between Australia and India LIVE on Fox Cricket, Day 3 coverage starts Monday at 9:30am AEDT!

A magic bit of fielding has opened the door for Australia on day three of the Boxing Day Test.

India was bowled out for 326 on day three, taking a first-innings lead of 131.

Australia is 2-65 in reply, with Matthew Wade (27) and Steve Smith (6) at the crease after the struggling Joe Burns was caught behind for 4 off the bowling of Umesh Yadav and Ravichandran Ashwin had Marnus Labuschagne (28) caught at first slip.

Smith just survived on five, nudging Ashwin around his pads just short of the leg-slip. It would have been his third straight single-figure dismissal against the spinner.

Scroll down to join our live blog!

MATCH CENTRE: Australia vs India live scoreboard, video highlights and commentary

Watch Australia v India Test Series Live & Ad-Break Free During Play with the Fox Cricket commentary team. New to Kayo? Get your free trial now & start streaming instantly >

Burns’ excruciatingly painful innings

2:11

Labuschagne survived the tightest of lbw reviews on 24 against Mohammed Siraj, with ball tracking projecting the delivery to be clipping the top of the stumps but not firmly enough to overturn the onfield decision. He top edged the following ball, but it fell safely.

His luck soon ran out however, as Ashwin found his edge.

Speaking ahead of play, Tim Paine said the Australians were in with a chance if they could keep the lead under 150 and post a second innings total above 350. Plenty rests on Smith and Wade to drag the hosts there after two early dismissals.

If you can’t see the blog below, click here

TALKING POINTS: The bowling difference holding Aussies back; two men who can turn the match

COLUMN: Australia’s margin for error was tiny. FIVE dropped catches took the game out of reach

MCG gets its sword as Jadeja makes 50

0:46

Milestone pursuit sees Rahane perish

1:02

Aussies drop FIVE in fielding nightmare

1:37

REPORT

Australia is off to a rough start after bowling India out on day three, losing Joe Burns (4) and Marnus Labuschagne (28) early.

It was a tortured stay for Burns, who was almost run out without scoring a run and survived the tightest of lbw reviews from Jasprit Bumrah on one before taking a review with him after copping a gem of a ball from Yadav. In a blow to India’s hopes, Yadav limped off injured in his fourth over.

Labuschagne survived the tightest of lbw reviews on 24 against Mohammed Siraj, with ball tracking projecting the delivery to be clipping the top of the stumps but not firmly enough to overturn the onfield decision. He top edged the following ball, but it fell safely.

His luck soon ran out however, as Ashwin found his edge.

Speaking ahead of play, Tim Paine said the Australians were in with a chance if they could keep the lead under 150 and post a second innings total above 350.

The tourists looked set to cruise past a first innings lead of 150, only for a magic bit of fielding from Marnus Labuschagne to change the course of the morning.

India captain Ajinkya Rahane was run out for 112 by Labuschagne and after Mitchell Starc bounced out Ravindra Jadeja for 57, the Australians were into the tail.

Over the remainder of the morning session, Nathan Lyon had Umesh Yadav (9) caught at first slip and Jasprit Bumrah (0) at midwicket, with Josh Hazlewood removing Ravichandran Ashwin (14) in between to wrap up the innings.

With Jadeja on 49, Rahane was called through for a risky single to short cover, where Labuschagne swept in before firing in an accurate throw to allow Tim Paine to run the Indian skipper out by the finest of margins.

Labuschagne found himself in the thick of action again when he dropped a catch at legslip to give Ashwin a reprieve off the bowling of Lyon. It was the sixth drop of the innings, the most by Australia since spilling seven against India in January 2012.

WARNE BAFFLED BY AUSSIE TACTICS

Australia started the day with just one slip and a gully for both Mitchell Starc and Pat Cummins, staggering Shane Warne.

“I’m very surprised at the field,” Warne said on Fox Cricket. “Batsmen have to start again, the bowlers they’ve been warming up for the last hour and half-hour so they’re raring to go, and they’ve got one slip and a gully and you’ve got to knock them over, you’ve got to take wickets to get back in the game.

“When you start the day like this you have to go attack because the best way to stop that lead is to get wickets.

“If you don’t get wickets in the initial burst, the first half-hour, then you can retreat a little bit and try contain runs. But you’ve got to get wickets, it’s the only way they are going to get back in the game.”

PAINE’S PLAN FOR VICTORY

Speaking ahead of play, Tim Paine outlined the path back into the game for Australia.

“When we get our chance again with the bat in what looks like is going to be pretty good batting conditions, we know if we can keep this lead to even 150, we get 350-plus we are going to be right in this game,” Paine said on Fox Cricket.

“We spoke today about sticking to our process. We think our bowlers have done a decent job. We set them a really high standard because they are so good.

“Yesterday we let them down in the field, it was as simple as that. They are going to create opportunities for us throughout the whole series, we’ve just got to be good enough to hold them.”

PONTING’S WARNING FOR CRICKET WORLD

Rahane’s century and India’s remarkable turnaround since the Adelaide Test has led to some questions over whether he should take the captaincy up full time but Virat Kohli is under no real pressure to hand over the reins.

However, former Australia captain Ricky Ponting believes Rahane’s success does open up a scary possibility for the rest of the world.

“Virat will be captain of India as long as he wants to, but if he thinks standing down is going to make him an even better player, then that’s a scary thing for world cricket,” Ponting told cricket.com.au.

“I’m not doubting Kohli’s captaincy skills or credentials at all, I’m just saying it’s going to take something special to pick up the pieces and Rahane’s been able to do that so far.

“I don’t think there’ll be pressure from anywhere else for Kohli to do that but let’s wait and see.”

India dominate Day 2 of Boxing Day Test

2:45

Day two of the Boxing Day Test was a bittersweet one for Starc, who took his 250th Test wicket but was left pining over several missed opportunities in the field that could’ve added to the total.

“Not our best day, but not our worst. We created a fair few chances but couldn’t hold onto those half ones,” he told reporters at stumps.

“‘Jinksy’ (Ajinkya Rahane) batted well. (I) thought there was some really good stuff from us but didn’t capitalise on a couple of chances.

“He batted well. We probably could’ve got him out three or four or five times. He’s run his luck, but it was a good hundred.”

Rain brought an early end to a humid day on Sunday. There is no rain forecast on Monday, with tops of 18 degrees predicted.



Source link


Recommended Clickbank Products