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3rd Test: India score 215/2 against Australia on Day 1 in Melbourne

India posted a score of 215 runs for the loss of two wickets at stumps on day one of the third Test against Australia on Wednesday, following excellent knocks by Mayank Agarwal, Cheteshwar Pujara and skipper Virat Kohli.  

3rd Test: India score 215/2 against Australia on Day 1 in Melbourne
Image Credits: Twitter/@BCCI

India posted a total of 215 runs for the loss of two wickets at stumps on day one of the third Test against Australia on Wednesday. 

This was largely possible due to a 161 ball 76 by Mayank Agarwal who delivered a stunning performance.  

Agarwal further enjoyed quality support from Cheteshwar Pujara and skipper Virat Kohli who made their presence felt with quality knocks. 

Pujara scored a 200 ball 68 with Kohli registering a 107 ball 47 to help India dominate the clash on day one. 

India will be looking to deliver a similar performance on day two, setting the stage for a comprehensive victory. 

Pat Cummins was the sole wicket-taker for Australia picking two wickets in an excellent show with the ball.  

Here are the highlights: 

# Stumps! 

# India 215/2 (89 overs)

# Cheteshwar Pujara and Virat Kohli have played all their shots down the ground in the last few overs, which has kept the scoreboard ticking without any risks. India 193/2 (80 overs)

# Pujara and Kohli have stitched a vital 50-run partnership for India, despite some quality bowling performances by the Australian bowling attack. The duo have kept the scoreboard ticking with some sensible strokeplay and inch-perfect coordination. India 174/2 (71 overs)     

# 50 for Cheteshwar Pujara who has been in good form for India in the series against Australia!   

# Both the batsmen are steadily going for their shots as the ball grows older, aiding strokeplay. Pujara has inched closer to a well-deserved half-century with skipper Virat Kohli in good form as well. India 160/2 (65 overs)

# Pat Cummins is generating some quality movement off the pitch which has forced Virat Kohli and Cheteshwar Pujara to adopt a defensive attitude in the last few overs. India 132/2 (59 overs)  

# Virat Kohli is the new batsman in! 

# Wicket! Pat Cummins has earned Australia a much-needed breakthrough accounting for the key wicket of Mayank Agarwal, who nudges a rising delivery to wicketkeeper Tim Paine. India 123/2 (54.5 overs)   

# Agarwal continues to dominate the bowlers, with reasonable success against spinner Nathan Lyon. Pujara, on the other end, has looked to hold on to the other end with some risk-free gameplay. India 113/1 (51 overs)       

# Agarwal and Pujara have stitched a fine partnership for India despite some quality bowling by the bowling attack. Agarwal is the man to watch out for, having scored his maiden half-century. India 91/1 (43 overs) 

# Maiden half-century for Agarwal who has scored the first half century by an Indian opener in the series against Australia!  

# Mayank Agarwal has inched closer to a well-deserved maiden half century, having combined aggression with caution to score runs at a consistent pace. Pujara, on the other hand, is adopting a wait and watch attitude as India look to negotiate the post-lunch session. India 72/1 (35 overs)  

# Play resumes! 

# Play will resume after a short lunch break! 

# The Australian pace bowlers are looking to intimidate Pujara and Agarwal with short pitched, inch-perfect deliveries which have left the batsmen unsettled. However, the duo have been steadfast in their approach so far, with rock-solid defence and shots down the ground. India 57/1 (28 overs)       

# Cheteshwar Pujara and Mayank Agarwal are looking to adopt a risk-free approach at this stage despite being unable to keep the scoreboard ticking. The Australian bowlers have bowled short, fiery deliveries which have forced the batsmen to duck at regular intervals. India 48/1 (22 overs)       

# Cheteshwar Pujara is the new man in! 

# Wicket! Pat Cummins has dismissed Hanuma Vihari off a very well directed bouncer which the opener attempted to fend off, but failed- handing a simple catch to Aaron Finch at slips. India 40/1 (18.5 overs)     

# Play-resumes! 

# Drinks break! 

# India are off to a good start in the first fifteen overs despite some fiery, accurate bowling by the Australian bowlers. Pat Cummins is generating some quality bounce from the wicket which has resulted in a certain level of discomfort to the openers, who are looking to rotate the strike at regular intervals. India 31/0 (15 overs)  

# A lethal, well-directed bouncer by Pat Cummins has struck Vihari on the helmet with the batsman currently being tended to by the medical staff! 

# Mayank Agarwal continues to dominate the Australian bowling attack with some confident shots down the ground and excellent strokeplay against spinner Nathan Lyon who has been brought into the attack. Vihari, on the other hand, is looking to defend every delivery without taking any unnecessary risks. India 26/0 (10 overs) 

# Openers Hanuma Vihari and Mayank Agarwal have indicated a confident approach in the initial few overs, combining caution with determination in an astute manner. Agarwal has indicated a positive attitude and a desire to go for his shots despite some aggressive bowling by the Australian pace bowlers. India 13/0 (5 overs)   

# Mitchell Starc is all set to kick off proceedings for Australia with the ball! 

# Openers Hanuma Vihari and Mayank Agarwal have made their way down to the pitch!  

# The clash is all set to start soon with the national-anthem ceremonies being currently conducted!  

# Indian skipper Virat Kohli has won the toss and opted to bat first! 

Visitors India will be expecting the rookie opening pair of Hanuma Vihari and Mayank Agarwal to make their presence felt against Australia in Melbourne with the third Test set to start from Wednesday.

The duo have been added to the side at the expense of KL Rahul and Murali Vijay who failed to register much of an impact in the first two Tests at Adelaide and Perth.

Rahul managed to score only 48 runs in four innings this series, including a highest score of 44 in the second innings at Adelaide. His average in overseas Tests has further dropped down to 20.94 in nine Tests indicating his struggle. 

Vijay, on the other hand, has fared no better having managed to accumulate 49 runs in the series so far, with a highest score of just 20. His average of 18.80 in 2019 and overseas average of 12.64 in seven Tests has been less than satisfactory as well 

Rohit Sharma has been included in the matchday lineup despite reports linking all-rounder Hardik Pandya with a possible inclusion.

India have further made a change in the bowling attack with the inclusion of left-arm spinner Ravindra Jadeja alongside Ishant Sharma, Mohammed Shami and Jasprit Bumrah. 

Jadeja has recovered sufficiently from his shoulder stiffness and takes Umesh Yadav's spot in the playing eleven. This was after off-spinner R Ashwin was ruled out of this third Test, as he still needs more time to recover from his left abdominal strain.

Australia too have made one change to their playing eleven. Peter Handscomb, who is short of runs, makes way for all-rounder Mitchell Marsh, albeit the latter isn't in the best form himself..

The pitch for this 'Boxing Day' Test sported some grass on the top surface, and both teams discussed the possibility of some moisture in the wicket as well.

The squads are as follows: 

India (XI): Virat Kohli (capt), Mayank Agarwal, Hanuma Vihari, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane, Rohit Sharma, Rishabh Pant (wk), Ravindra Jadeja, Ishant Sharma, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami.

Australia (XI): Tim Paine (capt & wk), Marcus Harris, Aaron Finch, Usman Khawaja, Travis Head, Shaun Marsh, Mitchell Marsh, Nathan Lyon, Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins, Josh Hazlewood.