Cheteshwar Pujara scored a composed century, while Virat Kohli, Mayank Agarwal and Rohit Sharma contributed with a fifty each as India declared their first innings on 443/7. Marcus Harris (5*) and Aaron Finch (3*) started Australian innings hesitantly and managed to take them to 8/0, trailing India by 435 runs at stumps on the second day of the third Test in Melbourne. Earlier at tea, India were 356/4 with Ajinkya Rahane and Rohit Sharma in the control following the dismissals of Kohli and Pujara, who held the fort for nearly five sessions of the third Test. Rohit remained unbeaten on 63 when captain Kohli declared the Indian innings. The second session had seen an exciting contest between the bat and the ball along with some behind the stumps banter by Australian captain Tim Paine. "If Rohit hits a six here I'm changing to Mumbai," he was heard saying behind the stumps. India made 62 runs without any loss of wicket in the morning session. For Australia, Pat Cummins claimed three wickets, while Mitchell Starc contributed with two wickets. Josh Hazlewood and Nathan Lyon joined the party with a scalp each. While Cheteshwar Pujara scored his 17th Test century off 280 balls, Virat Kohli became the second highest run-scorer in Australia after legendary batsman Sachin Tendulkar. Mayank Agarwal's noteworthy debut performance was the highlight of the first day. The four-match Test series is currently locked at 1-1. (SCORECARD)
Highlights between India vs Australia, 3rd Test, Day 2 from Melbourne Cricket Ground.
12:38 IST: That brings an end to the second day's play in Melbourne. Thank you for joining us for the live coverage.
12:33 IST: Stumps! Marcurs Harris (5*) and Aaron Finch (3*) manage to survive Jasprit Bumrah scare as Australia end Day 2 on eight without loss. They trail India (443/7 declared) by 435 runs in Melbourne.
12:29 IST: Jadeja starts with a maiden over. Australia are still five without any loss.
12:27 IST: Ravindra Jadeja replaces Ishant Sharma.
12:24 IST: Bumrah follows it up with a toe-reaching delivery. The seamer remains low, gets an inside edge but Harris is safe.
12:20 IST: Harris suffers a nasty blow on his hamlet. Australian physio is out in the field to check whether he is fine.
12:18 IST: 11 minutes left in today's play. And four more overs to go. Bumrah continues from one end.
12:13 IST: 2 runs! Harris pushes it confidently down the line to take a double. They could convert it into three. Australia are five without loss after first two overs.
12:12 IST: Another inside edge but Finch is safe.
12:10 IST: Japrit Bumrah to attack from the other end.
12:09 IST: End of the first over! Ishant had nearly got Aaron Finch. Australia are two without loss after one over.
12:04 IST: Players are back in the field. Marcus Harris and Aaron Finch to start for Australia. Ishant Sharma to open Indian attack.
11:56 IST: India declare on 443/7. Virat Kohli declared the Indian innings following the wicket of Ravindra Jadeja (4). Cheteshwar Pujara top-scored for India with 106 runs, while captain Kohli delighted with a 92-run knock. For Australia, Pat Cummins claimed three wickets while Mitchell Starc contributed with two dismissals.
11:54 IST: FOUR! And he starts with a confident boundary. He is playing his first Test in the Test series Down Under.
11:51 IST: Ravindra Jadeja comes to the crease.
11:50 IST: WICKET! Rishabh Pant gone! He managed to score exciting 39 runs before Mitchell Starc struck to get his second wicket.
11:48 IST: FOUR! Rishabh Pant smashes it down the line.
11:46 IST: FOUR! A terrific shot. Flowing drive from Rohit Sharma ensure India get four more runs.
11:44 IST: End of the over! Hazlewood concede four runs as India reach 428/5 in 168 overs.
11:39 IST: 2 runs! Punch through the cover. Good running between the wickets. It seems Pant now has his eyes set on his third Test fifty.
11:36 IST: 3 runs! Pant is more confident than ever. He tucks away the good length delivery for quick three runs. No magical first delivery with the new ball.
11:35 IST: Australia take the third new ball. Mitchell Starc will bowl with the new cherry.
11:32 IST: Rohit Sharma and Rishabh Pant complete 50-run partnership stand for the sixth-wicket.
11:28 IST: FIFTY! Rohit Sharma scores his 10th Test half-century off 97 balls. He had last scored a Test fifty in December 2017 in a Test match against Sri Lanka in Delhi. India are 408/5 in 163.4 overs.
11:27 IST: Aaron Finch introduced into the attack.
11:25 IST: This is India's highest total in an overseas Test in 2018.
11:22 IST: FOUR! Rohit lifts it up for a lovely boundary. He makes the most of the field placement as there was no fielder at deep mid wicket. And it brings up 400 for India.
11:20 IST: A quick single takes India to 399.
11:13 IST: Drinks are on the field now! The last one hour saw India regaining control as Rohit Sharma and Rishabh Pant made promising start. Add to that, Australia went a step back all because of their poor fielding. They dropped Rohit and Pant on 16 and 15 runs respectively.
11:05 IST: Rishabh Pant dropped! Pant was on 15. Pat Cummins is the culprit this time. Australia earlier dropped Rohit Sharma when he was on 16. Both the batsmen are on the crease right now and pose major threat to the Aussies.
11:04 IST: The 21-year-old wicketkeeper-batsman, playing his eighth Test, has scored 119 runs in four innings of the Test series so far. His highest in the series Down Under has been 36.
11:00 IST: FOUR! And Rishabh delights with a pull shot. No one could flight such a length ball better.
10:58 IST: Rishabh Pant takes a single to enter double digits. He remains on strike for the next over. India reach 386/5 in 157 overs.
10:54 IST: FOUR! Rishabh Pant changes his approach to get some quick runs. It brings India to 384/5 in 156 overs.
10:52 IST: Mitchell Marsh replaces Josh Hazlewood.
10:48 IST: Rohit Sharma last scored a fifty in a Test match against Sri Lanka in Delhi in December 2017. During the same series, he had scored a century in Nagpur.
10:44 IST: FOUR! Soft hands and beautiful placement ensures Rohit Sharma another boundary. His 37 against Australia in the Adelaide Test was no less exciting. But can he go beyond the fifty-run mark today?
10:42 IST: End of the 153rd over! India are 371/5 with Rohit (31*) taking the game forward with much grace.
10:37 IST: Josh Hazlewood returns to the attack.
10:35 IST: 3 runs! A glorious shot from Rohit Sharma. He looks promising today. He drives it gently through the cover to take three runs. A delightful sight to watch.
10:33 IST: Lyon claimed the wicket of Rahane for a record ninth time. He has dismissed no other batsman more than this. Also, it was the most by an Australian bowler against an Indian batsman. Lyon has dismissed Virat Kohli and Cheteshwar Pujara eight times each.
10:27 IST: Wicketkeeper-batsman Rishabh Pant comes to the crease.
10:24 IST: WICKET! Nathan Lyon finally strikes in his 40th over to trap Ajinkya Rahane LBW for 34 runs. With this, he breaks the 62-run partnership stand and keep Australia alive in the contest.
10:17 IST: FOUR! And he justifies the chances he got today with a lovely boundary behind point.
10:15 IST: Rohit Sharma dropped on 16. He has his luck on his side today. Peter Siddle is the culprit. Siddle had a plenty of time to grab the ball but he let it slip out of his hands.
10:13 IST: A loud LBW appeal against Rohit falls on deaf ears. Australia decide not to go for DRS as it seems there was a thin inside edge.
10:11 IST: 350 up for India! The visitors have lost four wickets so far with Cheteshwar Pujara (106) and Virat Kohli (82) being the crucial ones. However, they are well in command on a batsman-friendly wicket that has come with a sluggish outfield.
10:04 IST: 1 run! Lucky! Is Rohit lucky or Cummins too unlucky? It could have been his fourth wicket.
10:01 IST: Ajinkya Rahane and Rohit Sharma are back on the crease. Australia place a slip and a gully fielder for Pat Cummins.
09:40 IST: Tea! The dismissals of Virat Kohli and Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane-Rohit Sharma's resistance and a bit of behind the stumps banter by Australian captain Tim Paine conclude the second session on the second day of the third Test in Melbourne. India are 346/4 with Rahane (30*) and Rohit (13*) in charge.
09:35 IST: FOUR! Leg byes. Some bonus runs for India. Australian wicketkeeper is at no fault here. It brings up India to 346/4 in 141.2 overs.
09:30 IST: In a way, Tim Paine is trying to encourage Rohit Sharma from behind the stumps. Or probably, he's trying to get into the mind of Rohit, who seems inattentive so far.
09:26 IST: Ajinkya Rahane and Rohit Sharma take India to 338/4 in 139 overs. Meanwhile Tim Paine and Rohit Sharma's banter remains the highlight of this over.
09:17 IST: Rahane doesn't shy away from making constant efforts. A brilliant cutter gifts him two more runs. Even a diving gully fielder couldn't help the hosts much.
09:13 IST: FOUR! Rahane impresses one and all with a well selected shot. But it took a lot of effort to drive the ball past the boundary rope.
09:11 IST: Starc bowls a maiden over. India are 326/4 after 135 overs.
09:08 IST: Mitchell Starc comes back into the attack.
09:02 IST: FOUR! Rohit gets on the top of the short length ball and times it nicely for a boundary through mid wicket.
08:59 IST: As the wicket starts to behave in favour of the bowler, both Rahane and Rohit turn cautious. India are 320/4 in 132 overs.
08:50 IST: Nathan Lyon replaces Pat Cummins. Cummins just dismissed Pujara to claim his third wicket.
08:45 IST: Drinks are on the field now. A lot has happened in last one hour. India's leading men Virat Kohli and Cheteshwar Pujara have gone back to the pavilion. MItchell Starc and Pat Cummins finally struck on the second day to bring Australia back in the contest.
08:39 IST: Rohit scored 37 and one run in successive innings of the first Test in Adelaide, before being dropped for the second Test in Perth. Now he has a chance to prove his mettle in the longest format.
08:34 IST: Rohit Sharma has an average of 85.44 at home but remains unimpressive with a dismal 24.93 average away from home.
08:30 IST: Rohit Sharma comes at number six.
08:27 IST: WICKET! Pat Cummins snares Cheteshwar Pujara to claim his third wicket in the Test match. End of an impressive show by the number three batsman. He displayed tremendous grit to score 319-ball 106, which included 10 boundaries.
08:24 IST: Another usual bounce hurts Pujara a bit. India physio is out in the middle to check whether he is fine. The Indian batsman was hit on the same spot yesterday as well.
08:18 IST: 3 runs! Here comes a crackling shot from the willow of Ajinkya Rahane. The outfield is extremely slow, otherwise it would have been a boundary for sure.
08:17 IST: End of the over! India are 295/3 in 124 overs.
08:11 IST: Vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane comes to the crease.
08:09 IST: WICKET! And he gets into a trap. Virat Kohli gone for 82 runs. Mitchell traps the big fish as Aaron Finch makes no mistake. The Indian misses out on his 26th Test hundred.
08:07 IST: FOUR! Kohli picks up a boundary. He gets on the top to drive it past the boundary rope through the mid-on.
08:00 IST: Kohli predicts the bounce of the short ball and pushes it to deep backward square leg with grace to take a single. India are 248/2 after 121 overs.
07:54 IST: 3 runs! Excellent running! Pujara was not ready for it but Kohli was too determined and quick to convert it into a triple. The Indian skipper was up for a fourth run but Pujara didn't agree to him on this.
07:49 IST: 1 run! Starc beats Pujara with unusual bounce. The Centurion would have gone back to pavilion if Australia had a fielder at leg gully in place.
07:47 IST: Mitchell Starc bowls from the other end.
07:46 IST: End of the first over after the lunch session. No run conceded by Cummins, who just bowled his 9th maiden over in the third Test.
07:40 IST: Back to the action! Cheteshwar Pujara and Virat Kohli walks into the middle to resume Indian innings. Pat Cummins to continue the attack for Australia.
07:02 IST: End of the first session! Cheteshwar Pujara (103*) and Virat Kohli (69*) take India to 277/2 at lunch on the second day of the third Test in Melbourne.
06:59 IST: Wide! Here comes some bonus runs for India. Mitchell Marsh, who replaced local boy Peter Handscomb, is yet to make a mark on his return.
06:52 IST: Virat Kohli has become the second highest run-scorer in Australia after Sachin Tendulkar. Tendulkar has scored 1,809, while Kohli now has 1,237 runs to name. With this, he surpassed VVS Laxman (1,236) and Rahul Dravid (1,143) as well.
06:46 IST: HUNDRED! Pujara scores his 17th Test century off 280 balls. India are 271/2 in 113.1 overs. With this, he completed 322 runs in the ongoing Test series, maximum by any batsman.
06:43 IST: 1 run! Kohli pushes it to deep backward point to get a single. Comfortable enough.
06:38 IST: Two runs from the over by Mitchell Marsh. India are 264/2 in 111 overs.
06:35 IST: Pujara was the only batsman to score a century in the first Test against Australia in Adelaide that India won by 31 runs.
06:30 IST: Cheteshwar Pujara is the leading run-scorer in the four-Test series so far with 312 runs. Captain Virat Kohli is on the second spot with 243 runs. This is Pujara's personal best as well in a Test series away from home.
06:24 IST: FOUR! Pujara enters nineties with an impressive boundary. There are 10 overs to go before lunch. Let's see if he manages to convert it into a triple-digit mark before the end of the morning session.
06:22 IST: FOUR! Beautiful. A magical shot by Virat Kohli. India are 255/2 after 107 overs.
06:18 IST: End of the over! India get four runs from the 106th over. Good use of feet have gifted the visitors these runs. Both Pujara and Kohli are playing smart cricket as Australia bowlers come resilient.
06:13 IST: Hazlewood bowls another maiden over. it was his ninth in the third Test. Both Pujara and Kohli are cautious amid aggressive bowling attack.
06:05 IST: Drinks are on the field now! the first one hour of the day has been positive for the visitors. They have scored 31 runs without any loss of wicket. Besides, Kohli hit his 20th Test half-century and Pujara gained confidence on course for his 17th Test century.
06:02 IST: No run from the over! Some hostile fast bowling on display by Josh Hazlewood. India are 246/2 in 103 overs.
05:52 IST: FOUR! Kohli continues with his luck on the second day. Australia had the trap set for the Indian captain but Aaron Finch decided not to go for an effort at the second slip.
05:50 IST: Lyon concedes just one run in the 100th over. India are 241/2 with Pujara (82*) and Kohli (56*) in charge.
05:47 IST: Spinner Nathan Lyon to attack from the other end.
05:46 IST: A maiden over by Hazlewood to start with. India are still 240/2 after 99 overs.
05:43 IST: First change of the day! Josh Hazlewood replaces Mitchell Starc.
05:41 IST: This year, Pat Cummins has been the most successful bowler for Australia in Tests. He has claimed 37 wickets in eight Test matches in 2018.
05:35 IST: FOUR! Well controlled shot from Pujara gets him a boundary behind square on the off-side. It brings up 240 runs for India. No wicket has been fallen on the second day so far.
05:33 IST: The 100-run stand between Virat Kohli and Cheteshwar Pujara is the third such partnership for the third-wicket in a Test match against Australia in this year. This is the maximum against any team in 2018.
05:27 IST: Nicely tucked away! Pujara pushes it towards long leg to take a single and remain on strike for the next over.
05:22 IST: Three runs from the over! India are 233/2 after 94 overs. Two runs came off the last delivery by Pat Cummins. Kohli flicked and missed but managed to get a double leg byes.
05:15 IST: 3 runs! Incredible display of footwork by Kohli. No one could smash it better. It takes India to 230 with a loss of two wickets.
05:09 IST: End of the over! India are 227/2 after 91 overs. It has been a bright start for India on Day 2 as they scored 12 runs off the first two overs.
05:06 IST: FOUR! Edged but runs! Pujara gets some quick runs here. And it brings up a 100-run partnership stand between Kohli and Pujara.
05:03 IST: FIFTY! Virat Kohli hits his 20th Test fifty off 110 balls. He runs for a quick three as the fielder at min-on takes much time while chasing the ball.
05:00 IST: Virat Kohli and Cheteshwar Pujara are out in the middle to resume Indian innings. Pat Cummins will bowl the first over for Australia.
04:55 IST: India were 215/2 on the first day of the third Test.
04:50 IST: Hello and welcome to our live coverage of the second day of the third Test between India and Australia at the MCG, Melbourne.
But the exciting Agarwal rose to the challenge in front of 73,500 fans after India won an important toss and opted to bat on a pitch that is expected to deteriorate as the match wears on. He stroked 76 and was looking impregnable before Cummins had him caught behind by Tim Paine as he gloved the last ball before tea down the legside. It brought Kohli to the crease to a huge roar from the large Indian contingent at the MCG and he set about building an unbroken 92-run partnership with the ever-reliable Pujara. The four-Test series is tied 1-1 after India won the opening clash in Adelaide by 31 runs and Australia drew level with a 146-run victory in Perth, making Melbourne a crunch encounter. Agarwal, who has been in fine domestic form, scored his first Test runs with a three through the covers off Josh Hazlewood and he had plundered 17 before the more cagey Hanuma Vihari, promoted to open from number six in Perth, troubled the scorers.
After two lively pitches in Adelaide and Perth produced results, the track in Melbourne was not bowler-friendly and skipper Paine brought on spinner Nathan Lyon in only the seventh over to see if he could weave some magic. But it was Cummins who got the breakthrough. Vihari had already taken a nasty blow on the helmet in the 12th over, with the physio needed to check he was okay. The right-hander continued but when he tried to avoid another brutal Cummins bouncer the ball pinged off his glove. Aaron Finch took an easy catch in the slips and he was gone for eight. All-rounder Mitch Marsh was then brought into the attack only to be met with boos from a section of the crowd, having been recalled in place of local boy Peter Handscomb. But Agarwal was unflappable and glided to his maiden Test 50 off 95 balls by effortlessly drilling a Lyon delivery past the non-striker for four. His 76 is the highest by an Indian opener so far this series. At the other end the patient Pujara deployed his usual blocking technique, picking off runs from loose balls.