Boxing Day Test : India tighten screws as Australia reach 136/5 at Tea

Melbourne: India picked two more wickets in the post-lunch session to dominate the proceedings on the opening day of the second Test against Australia being played at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG).

At Tea on Day One, the hosts were 136/5 with skipper Tim Paine and Cameron Green batting on 0 and 6 respectively.Resuming the session at 65/3, Marnus Labuschagne and Travis Head started off positively and didn’t give any chance to the Indian bowlers.

Both batted sensibly and made sure they kept collecting runs whenever the opportunity came their way. They shared a 86-run partnership before Jasprit Bumrah got Head caught at slips by skipper Ajinkya Rahane at his individual score of 38.

Labuschagne, who had survived a couple of lbw calls and a blow on the helmet as well, looked all set for a well-deserved half century until he became the first Test scalp of Mohammad Siraj, just two runs short of the milestone. Siraj, bowling to his field, got the Australian batter caught by another debutant Shubman Gill down the leg-side. Labuschagne scored 48 runs in 132 balls he faced.

Green and Paine then made sure Australia went into the break without losing any further wickets. Earlier, after being asked to ball, the visitors had a great morning session as they had the hosts reeling at 38/3, taking the wickets of Joe Burns (0), Matthew Wade (30) and Steve Smith (0). Ravichandran Ashwin was the pick of the Indian bowlers as he picked two wickets giving away 25 runs in the 15 overs he has bowled so far.

Bumah has also picked two wickets, conceding 24 runs in 12 overs. Umesh Yadav (0/39) and Ravindra Jadeja (0/13) have been wicketless so far.Brief scores: Australia 135/5 (Marnus Labuschagne 48, Travis Head 38; Jasprit Bumrah 2/24)

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