Melbourne, Dec 28 (IANS) Indian bowlers continued their dominance in the post-lunch session adding three more wickets as Australia were down for 145/7 at tea on Day 3 of the third Test at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) here on Friday.
At the breather, Australia were trailing India by 298 runs with their skipper Tim Paine unbeaten on 22 and pacer Mitchell Starc (5 not out) giving him company.
Resuming the second session at 89/4, Australia immediately lost the in-form Travis Head (20) with pacer Jasprit Bumrah breaking through his defence to get his third victim.
It was just a matter of time for Head’s partner Mitchell Marsh (9), whose lean patch with the bat has recently seen him warming the bench more than often and left-arm spinner Ravindra Jadeja took full advantage of his vulnerability.
Marsh got an inside edge off a fuller delivery to be caught by Ajinkya Rahane, leaving the hosts reeling at 102/6 and bringing together Paine and Pat Cummins (17).
From there on, the right-handed duo batted sensibly, punishing the odd delivery for a boundary although the Indian bowlers continuously kept asking questions with some disciplined stuff.
Persistence finally paid off for the Indians as pacer Mohammed Shami got rid of Cummins, who has been a pain in the Indian ranks on most occasions in this series.Earlier resuming the day at 8/0, Australia were reduced to 89/4 at lunch with Bumrah accounting for the wickets of opener Marcus Harris (22) and Shaun Marsh (19) after fellow quick Ishant Sharma started the proceedings with the wicket of the other opener Aaron Finch (8).
Jadeja also found himself in the wickets column with the wicket of the in-form Usman Khawaja (21) to keep the Aussies at bay.
Earlier on the second day, India’s mammoth 443/7 was powered by a classic century by Cheteshwar Pujara (106) and valuable contributions from skipper Virat Kohli (82), opener Mayank Agarwal (76) and Rohit Sharma (63 not out).
In reply, the Ausssie openers came out to bat six overs and went back undefeated with the team on 8/0 at stumps.Brief Scores:
India 443/7 (Cheteshwar Pujara 106, Virat Kohli 82, Mayank Agarwal 76, Rohit Sharma 63 not out; Pat Cummins 3/72) vs Australia 145/7 (Marcus Harris 22, Usman Khawaja 21; Jasprit Bumrah 3/32, Ravindra Jadeja 2/44) at tea on Day 3.