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Melbourne Test: India 215/2 at stumps against Australia

27 December 2018

Agarwal's 76 helped India to 215-2 at stumps on the first day of the third test in a heated series tied at 1-all.

The opening day of the third test match between India and Australia at the MCG has undoubtedly belonged to the visitors so far.

Kohli was given a life late in the day after a diving Tim Paine dropped a tough chance during a fiery Mitchell Starc spell with the new ball.

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India chose to bat and the 27-year-old looked strong before he was dismissed by Pat Cummins, who took both wickets to fall, with the last ball before tea.

Johnson has been criticising Indian players for sometime now, and this time, he took to Twitter to issue Kohli a challenge as Indians face the Australian heat down under. For a man who has made it a habit to score big in domestic cricket, Agarwal looked very much the Test opener on his first dip in worldwide cricket. Skipper Kohli won the toss and opted to bat having announced the team a day before the match.

But the decision to axe both openers smacks of panic for an Indian side which has relied heavily on Virat Kohli, Cheteshwar Pujara and Ajinkya Rahane for runs during the series. "I think he's had conversations with the selectors that there's a few things they would like him to work on and Pete is open to that", Paine said.

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Pujara joined Agarwal and they were impenetrable. "Saying that, I would have liked to have gone on and be there at the end of the day", said Agarwal. "They kept it tight and they were attacking", he added. "As long as the line is not crossed, you have no issues", said Kohli. The former Indian cricketer also went on to say that he is surprised with the opening combination as the Aussies have three pacers and it would have been ideal for Vihari to say in the middle order.

Recalled allrounder Marsh, who was booed by some fans presumably frustrated by Victorian Peter Handscomb's omission, has already delivered 15 overs.

He rarely looked threatened although he got an inside edge on 33 that just failed to carry to Usman Khawaja at gully before bringing up his 21st Test 50 from 152 balls.

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Melbourne Test: India 215/2 at stumps against Australia