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On Wednesday, India made a steady start to the third Test against Australia in Melbourne. India scored 215 runs for the loss of 2 wickets at the end of the first day’s play. Indian Cricket Team Captain Virat Kohli was unbeaten on 47 at stumps with Cheteswar Pujara unbeaten on 68 at Melbourne Cricket Ground. So far, the only two batsmen in the series who have scored centuries, Virat Kohli and Cheteswar Pujara are both well-placed to add to their tallies of hundreds. After the continuous poor performance of both the Indian openers KL Rahul and Murali Vijay, both these players have been dropped from this crucial third test match which could decide the outcome of the series. Both the Indian openers and especially KL Rahul has been in poor form on this Australian tour. Alternatively, Hanuma Vihari who gave a good performance in the last test match was promoted to open the inning along with the debutant Mayank Agarwal who made a good 76 at the top of the order.

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In the evening session, Australia had hoped that the second new ball would bring wickets late in the day’s play.  Virat Kohli World No.1-ranked batsman had a tensed moment on 47 when he appeared to edge a low catch to Tim Paine off the bowling of Mitchell Starc, but the wicketkeeper was unable to grasp the difficult chance. It was also noticeable that the Indian batsmen played well against Nathan Lyon who had troubled the Indians in the last match.

Earlier in the day India won the toss and chose to bat first. Hanuman Vihari who was promoted to open the innings scored 8 runs out of 66 balls. India will look to pile on the runs on the second day of the match to make sure that they make the most of a good start by the Indian top order batsmen. It will be important to get past the 400 run mark in the first innings as it will help to build pressure on the Australian batting lineup.

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