Monday 18 December 2017 / 02:50 AM

INDIA FIGHT BACK AS TENSIONS RISE ON DAY 3

India fought back strongly on Day 3 of the second Test in Bangalore, building a lead of 126 runs over Australia with six second-wicket innings in hand.

Australia were finally dismissed for 276 – a first-innings lead of 87 – but the embattled hosts belatedly found some form with the bat in this series to reach 4/213 at stumps.

Matthew Wade (40) and Mitchell Starc (26) resumed on Monday morning, but when the duo fell in quick succession, Ravindra Jadeja knocked over the tail to finished with figures of 6/63.

The tourists added only 43 runs to their overnight score for the loss of their last four wickets.

Abhinav Mukund was the first Indian wicket to fall, bowled by Hazlewood in the 11th over with the score on 39.

After a vital 90 in the first innings, Lokesh Rahul scored a classy 51 before succumbing to a brilliant Steve Smith catch off Steve O’Keefe’s bowling.

But O’Keefe’s reaction to the stunning wicket – launching a verbal spray at non-striker Cheteshwar Pujara – is likely to pique the interest of match officials.

Virat Kohli went cheaply yet again, this time lbw to Hazlewood for just 15, before Hazlewood struck again by rattling Jadeja’s (2) stumps.

But with India on the precipice at 4/120, Pujara (79 not out) and Ajinkya Rahane (40 not out) produced the highest partnership of the bowler-dominated series to date – 93 not out – to put the home side in a handy position heading into Day 4.

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Will Evans

CBS’s Editor-in-Chief and lead rugby league, union and cricket writer, Will is a Christchurch-based freelancer, also writing for Big League and Rugby League Review magazines, and The New Daily website. Will has written four rugby league books.

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