Melbourne Test: India declare at 443/7, Australia 8/0 at stumps on day 2

Melbourne: Australia were eight for no loss at stumps in reply to India’s first innings total of 443/7 declared on the second day of the third Test against India here Thursday. Openers Marcus Harris (5) and Aaron Finch (3) were at the crease at close of play.

Earlier, Cheteshwar Pujara and captain Virat Kohli were out for 106 and 82 respectively in the post-lunch session.

India looked ready for another hard day’s grind, with Kohli reaching his half-century off 110 balls, in the very first over of the day. The two batsmen scored quickly in the first hour and kept the scorecard ticking, before Australia went back to their tactic of cutting runs.

Pat Cummins bowled another wonderful spell, extracting most out of the pitch than any other Australian bowler, and he beat the edges of both batsmen on a couple occasions but without any luck.

Nathan Lyon bowled with a predominantly leg-side field and into the batsmen. His duel with Pujara was quite remarkable, as the batsman kept turning him to the onside again and again. On the rare occasion, Lyon pulled his length back and Pujara used his feet well and drove him to the offside against the turn.

The four-match series is pegged at 1-1, after India won the first Test in Adelaide by 31 runs and Australia took the second Test in Perth by 146 runs.

Brief scores:

India 1st innings: 443/7 declared in 169.4 overs (Cheteshwar Pujara 106, Virat Kohli 82, Mayank Agarwal 76, Rohit Sharma not out 63; Pat Cummins 3/72)

Australia 1st innings: 8 for no loss in 6 overs.