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Bumrah, Siraj strike as India maintain dominance

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Melbourne [Australia], December 26 (ANI): Jasprit Bumrah dismissed Travis Head while Mohammad Siraj picked his maiden wicket as India maintained their dominance over Australia in the Boxing Day Test here at Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) on Saturday.

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If Ravichandran Ashwin and Bumrah stole the show for India in the first session, it was debutants Siraj and Shubman Gill who put the ball in the visitors’ court after dismissing Marnus Labuschagne just before the concluding minutes of the second session.

At the tea break, Australia’s score read 136/5 in 52 overs with Cameron Green (unbeaten on 6 ) and skipper Tim Paine(unbeaten on 0) at the crease. The session saw Australia scored 71 runs.

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Starting the session with the game in India’s favour, Labuschagne and Head held the ground as they took the hosts to 92/3 after 36 overs.

The duo took Australia over the 100-run mark and steadied the ship after the early blows. Head then picked the tempo and smashed Bumrah for back-to-back boundaries.

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But just when it looked like the duo would give Australia the upper hand and walk away with the honours of winning the second session, Bumrah spoiled the party for hosts.

The Indian pacer dismissed Head to snatch the commanding position Australia were heading into. Labuschagne and Head stitched an 86-run stand for the fourth wicket. Siraj dismissed Labuschagne when the batsman was just two runs short of his half-century.

Earlier, Ravichandran Ashwin stole the show with two wickets while pacer Jasprit Bumrah provided an early breakthrough to put Australia on the back foot in the first session. Joe Burns (0) failed to capitalise on the start he got in the last Test as India drew the first blood.

After opting to bat first, Australia got off to the worst possible start as pacer Jasprit Bumrah dismissed Burns for a ten-ball duck in the fifth over.

Labuschagne then joined Mathew Wade in the middle and the duo tried to stitch the innings for the hosts as both batters saw off the early spell of Bumrah and Umesh Yadav.

However, Ashwin dismissed Wade as he skied the ball, and all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja took a spectacular catch while running back.

Ashwin then dismissed Steve Smith for a duck to put visitors on top. The Indian spinner’s back to back wickets left Australia at 38/3.

The Tim Paine-led side’s score read 65/3 at the end of the first session on the first day.

Brief Scores: Aus 136/5 (Travis Head 38, Marnus Labuschagne 48; Jasprit Bumrah 2-24 , Ravichandran Ashwin 2-25) (ANI)

Disclaimer: This post has been auto-published from an agency feed without any modifications to the text and has not been reviewed by an editor

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