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Blog: Australia vs India, Day 1, Melbourne

ABC News logo ABC News 26-12-2014 James Maasdorp and Jon Healy

Match pictures: Day 1, Boxing Day Test

THAT'S STUMPS! AUSTRALIA 5-259 (Smith 72*, Haddin 23*)

A well-balanced, enthralling day of Test cricket on Boxing Day comes to an end. It's definitely been one of the better bowling performances by India in this series, with wickets coming early in each session to put Australia under pressure.

Chris Rogers (57) and Shane Watson (52) both got starts after David Warner's duck early in the innings, but again failed to build on their positive starts. It was left to Steve Smith (72*) to hold the innings together as his sparkling form continued. He went past 1000 runs for the calendar year as well.

Joe Burns made his debut and showed some promise before he was dismissed for 13. Brad Haddin will need to dig in on day two to turn around his poor form with the bat.

For India, Umesh Yadav (2 for 69) and Mohammed Shami (2 for 55) starred with the ball, while Ravichandran Ashwin (1 for 60) motored through his overs to keep the tourists' over-rate respectable.

AUS 5-259 (Smith 72*, Haddin 23*)

India has thrown the ball to Mohammed Shami, who is carrying a hip injury. He will bowl what should be the last over of the day.

The first ball is short and Haddin works it off his hip to fine leg for one run.

Smith whips the ball to mid-on. Haddin and Smith then exchange two quick singles in as many balls to put Haddin back on strike for the final delivery.

The last ball is poked to point for a dot ball. That's day one wrapped up.

AUS 5-255 (Smith 70*, Haddin 21*)

More pressing from India as Ishant Sharma tots up another maiden over, which includes a ball that Smith nervously inside edges onto his pad.

AUS 5-255 (Smith 70*, Haddin 21*)

Yadav pitches it short from around the wicket to Haddin, who offers a very ill-advised flash at that ball. It was travelling wide of offstump and it misses the edge.

Yadav pitches one in at yorker length at Haddin's ankles, but the batsman whips it away towards fine leg. He picks up one as the fielder collects.

Smith comes across his stumps to work Yadav towards square leg for an easy single. He moves into the seventies.


AUS 5-253 (Smith 69*, Haddin 20*)

Another maiden: Ishant Sharma bangs it on a good consistent length to Smith. Stumps should come about at 5:30pm local time - about 15 minutes.

AUS 5-253 (Smith 69*, Haddin 20*)

A maiden over for Yadav, who comes around the wicket to catch Haddin on the bouncer with a searing bouncer at over 150kph.

AUS 5-253 (Smith 69*, Haddin 20*)

Ishant bowls to Smith. The Australian captain gets a single to mid-off.

Haddin moves into the twenties with one run to cover.

AUS 5-251 (Smith 68*, Haddin 19*)

Yadav returns to the bowling attack and he is immediately played to square leg by Smith, who collects two runs.

BIG LBW SHOUT! Yadav has Smith retreating well back into his crease and catches him flush on the pad in front of the stumps, but it's given not out! The umpire's decision is vindicated by HotSpot, however, with replays showing there was an inside edge.

Smith calms things down with a single to mid-on.

Haddin drives on the back foot through cover to run home two.

AUS 5-242 (Smith 65*, Haddin 13*)

Ishant Sharma is starting a new spell with the new ball, which has been taken by MS Dhoni.

PLAY AND A MISS! That ball sings through the air, the seam staying true and upright, as Ishant beats the edge of Haddin's bat.

EDGED, BUT SAFE. Ishant gets one nicking off Haddin's willow, but it lands well short of the diving fielder in the slips.

TOP EDGE, AND FOUR! Ishant's been all over Haddin this over, but Haddin gets away with one as he throws his hands at a shorter ball, getting a thick edge over the slips cordon to third man.

AUS 5-242 (Smith 65*, Haddin 13*)

Ashwin rips through another super quick over. I keep mentioning this because it's impressive, given the talk over slow over-rates throughout the cricketing world. That's a maiden.

Now Shami is coming back onto the field and "is limping around like a 98-year-old", says Drew Morphett.

AUS 5-242 (Smith 65*, Haddin 13*)

Vijay pitches it up at Smith, who puts a big stride in before flicking a shot past the bowler for a single to long on.

Nice shot from Haddin! The wicketkeeper-batsman leans back and cuts vijay hard between point and cover. He will pick up three runs.

Smith will keep the strike with a single to long-on.

AUS 5-237 (Smith 63*, Haddin 10*)

Smith gets a single off Ashwin to put Haddin on strike.

SIX! Ashwin offers a tad too much flight to Haddin, who rocks forward and smashes a lofted shot, all the way over the long-off boundary rope. Maximum runs!

Meanwhile, Mohammed Shami has limped off the field with a suspected hamstring tweak. That does strain India's pace bowling stocks somewhat.

Latest pics from Day 1

AUS 5-230 (Smith 62*, Haddin 4*)

Vijay rips through his over as India keeps up a good over-rate. He concedes just the single off Smith.

AUS 5-228 (Smith 60*, Haddin 4*)

Haddin gets a single off Ashwin's first ball to put Smith back on strike.

Now Smith drives down to long-on for another single to keep the scoreboard ticking over.

AUS 5-227 (Smith 60*, Haddin 3*)

Vijay is back into the attack.

1000 RUNS FOR 2014! Smith gets a single to deep square leg to bring up his 1000th run of the calendar year. Did I say this guy was in form, or did I say this guy was in form?

Haddin works the last ball of the over through midwicket for a single.

AUS 5-225 (Smith 59*, Haddin 2*)

After a drinks break, Ashwin returns to bowl over the wicket to Smith. It's another lightning quick over from Ashwin, who concedes just the one run as Smith works him to long on.

AUS 5-223 (Smith 57*, Haddin 2*)

Smith works Ashwin to mid-wicket for a single. Haddin and Smith exchange a pair of singles to close out the over.

AUS 5-218 (Smith 53*, Haddin 1*)

Smith gets forward to Ashwin and drives to long on for a single.

Haddin gets off the mark with a defensive shot towards cover for one run.


Gone! The debutant is out for 13 as he attempts a cramped-up pull shot against Yadav, but bottom-edges it through to the keeper! Replays don't show much deviation but there was a noise and it didn't come close to any clothing. Must have been a feather-edge. A glimpse of class from Burns, but he'll be disappointed he didn't get a slightly bigger score.

Brad Haddin, a man with a point to prove, comes out into the middle.

FIFTY FOR SMITH! 4x4s, 1x6s, 96 BALLS. AUSTRALIA 4-216 (Burns 13*)

What a rich vein of form we are witnessing this summer! Smith has reached another fifty for the series, and this one has showcased his all-round game. A really conservative, cautious start to his innings was followed by a freer, more aggressive knock as he reaches his half-ton at about three runs to the over. Leading from the front.

AUS 4-213 (Smith 49*, Burns 13*)

Burns studiously waits out an over as Ashwin chalks up another maiden.

AUS 4-213 (Smith 49*, Burns 13*)

BOUNDARY! Gorgeous legside shot from Smith, who punishes the bad ball by playing across his body for four runs to midwicket.

AUS 4-209 (Smith 45*, Burns 13*)

FOUR! Not a boundary, mind you, but Smith has guided Ashwin through point and finds a big vacant area. He showcases that terrific running between the wickets of his to run home four runs. Top stuff from the skipper.

Smith guides another ball to midwicket to walk home a single and retain strike.

AUS 4-204 (Smith 40*, Burns 13*)

FOUR! Great shot from Burns! Short from Ishant Sharma and the debutant just guides this through the gap between gulley and slip for a classy boundary!

AUS 4-200 (Smith 40*, Burns 9*)

BAM! Burns has his first boundary in Test cricket and it's a beauty! India has brought its field in to put pressure on the debutant, who responds with an audacious, aerial drive over the infield towards midwicket. Great shot!

Burns does get a single to ultimately retain the strike for the next over. It also brings up Australia's 200.

AUS 4-195 (Smith 40*, Burns 4*)

FOUR! Smith has another boundary here as he whacks a perfunctory short ball from Shami down to the fine leg rope. He's into the forties, now.

There's some niggle brewing between Smith and Shami! Smith is forward and defending resolutely against a length delivery, only for Shami to have a shy at the stumps. Smith just holds his defensive shot to block out the ball a second time, and enjoys a tense little stare-off with the bowler.

AUS 4-191 (Smith 36*, Burns 4*)

Another run for Burns as he works Ashwin - coming over the wicket to the right hander - behind square for a single.

Another Ashwin ball strays a bit too far down the leg side with Smith the beneficiary this time, working it fine for a single.

AUS 4-189 (Smith 35*, Burns 3*)

Shami to Smith - the first ball of the over is punched wide of mid-wicket for another single. Burns back on strike.

Burns's second ball in Test cricket is a boucer. He ducks underneath this easily enough.

OFF THE MARK! Burns is forward and defensive but his timing is good and he gets it through the gap at cover! He'll run home three runs to open his account for Australia.

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AUS 4-185 (Smith 34*, Marsh 32*)

Smith is on strike for the new Ashwin over. He defends four balls before working the spin bowler behind square leg for a single. Burns will face one ball of the over.

Burns's first ball in Test cricket is tentatively dabbed away towards cover for a dot ball. He survives to another round of applause.


Edged and gone! A length ball from Shami sees Marsh playing an uncertain shot towards backward point, but it's a misjudged shot and he gets the outside edge to Dhoni's gloves.

India strikes early in the session again! That dismissal brings out Test debutant Joe Burns, who gets a big round of applause from the MCG faithful. What a place to make your debut!

AUS 3-184 (Smith 33*, Marsh 32*)

Lovely cover drive from Smith as he powers Shami through the gap and picks up three more runs.

AUS 3-180 (Smith 29*, Marsh 32*)

And we're back in action with Ashwin coming around the wicket to Smith.

SIX! WOW-EE! Smith comes down the wicket to Ashwin and smashes him over the rope with a beauty of a cover drive! Lofted with power! That's a statement of intent.

Smith keeps strike with a single to long on.

We're nearly ready for the final session on Boxing Day. We should be underway in a minute or two.

THAT'S TEA! AUSTRALIA 3-174 (Smith 23*, Marsh 32*)

India came roaring back into contention with a double wicket strike shortly after both Chris Rogers (57) and Shane Watson (52) had reached their half-centuries. That brought out two fresh batsmen in Steve Smith and Shaun Marsh with India primed for more wickets.

But the incumbent pair of batsmen have negotiated a tricky spell and will be looking to establish themselves in the third session. If India can claim early wickets like it has in both sessions so far, it will easily claim day one honours at this rate.

AUS 3-174 (Smith 23*, Marsh 32*)

Shami to bowl the last over before tea, to Marsh.

FOUR! Marsh strolls into the thirties with a lethal cut shot! He waits on Shami's length delivery and plays it rapidly past the man at gulley for another boundary.

AUS 3-170 (Smith 23*, Marsh 28*)

Vijay only given the two overs to bowl, despite creating some opportunities. Ashwin replaces him for what could be the last over before the tea break.

BEATEN! Ashwin beats the edge of Marsh's back-foot defensive stroke. The keeper attempts a casual stumping that was never on.

Now Marsh works Ashwin behind square leg and picks up three for it.

End of the over. I forget how quickly Ashwin works through his overs. India will squeeze one more in before tea.

AUS 3-167 (Smith 23*, Marsh 25*)

Shami replaces Yadav at the Member's End.

FOUR! Shami strays down the legside and Smith capitalises with a leg glance that travels very fine. There's no stopping that as it reaches the fence.

AUS 3-163 (Smith 19*, Marsh 25*)

Marsh works Vijay through mid-wicket and thinks about two runs, but settles for one as Pujara fields.

Smith makes room for himself and drives Vijay off the back foot through cover and he will get home for two runs.

Smith follows that up with a paddled shot behind square leg for one run.

AUS 3-157 (Smith 14*, Marsh 24*)

Smith dabs Yadav to cover for a quick single. Marsh follows that up with a paddled shot off his pads to square leg for one run.

Now Smith pulls Yadav behind square leg. He has time enough to come back for two runs.

AUS 3-155 (Smith 13*, Marsh 23*)

Murali Vijay, the part-time spinner, will relieve Ashwin from around the wicket.

Marsh gets off strike with a single to cover.

Smith takes a big stride forward and plays the ball down to mid-off for an easy single.

AUS 3-153 (Smith 12*, Marsh 22*)

Yadav has Marsh on his toes as the batsman plays it to square leg for one run.

AUS 3-152 (Smith 12*, Marsh 21*)

Smith rocks onto the back foot and cuts Ashwin through point and he'll get at least three here! In fact, he's going for a fourth run and he'll get it as the fielder collects in front of the boundary rope. Terrific running.

AUS 3-148 (Smith 8*, Marsh 21*)

FOUR! Gorgeous straight drive from Marsh as Yadav pitches it to full. It's caressed past the bowler, straight down the ground for a boundary. Marsh moves into the twenties.

Marsh puts Smith on strike with a single to midwicket.

LBW shout! Yadav pitches one outside off and catches Smith on the pad, but the umpire says no. Good ball, but not a wicket-taking delivery.

Smith does get a single to end the over, swiping Yadav to mid-wicket.

Match pictures

AUS 3-142 (Smith 7*, Marsh 16*)

Smith gets a single off Ashwin, driving the spinner to long-on for one run.

Marsh clips Ashwin to the same part of the field for another single.

FOUR! Great shot, captain! Smith comes down the wicket and lofts an inside-out off-drive over the infield to the extra cover boundary.

AUS 3-136 (Smith 2*, Marsh 15*)

Ishant Sharma gets through a maiden over to Marsh as he looks to build up the pressure on the Aussies.

AUS 3-136 (Smith 2*, Marsh 15*)

FOUR! "A ripping shot," says Drew Morphett, as Marsh comes down the wicket to Ashwin to pummel the spin bowler over long-on. One bounce before crashing into the fence.

Marsh hurries home a quick single behind square leg.

AUS 3-131 (Smith 2*, Marsh 10*)

FOUR! A release of pressure for Marsh as he caresses a handsome off-drive past the diving man at mid-off to the boundary rope.

The last ball of the over is turned behind square leg by Marsh for a single. He moves into double figures.

AUS 3-130 (Smith 2*, Marsh 9*)

FOUR! A release of pressure for Marsh as he caresses a handsome off-drive past the diving man at mid-off to the boundary rope.

AUS 3-126 (Smith 2*, Marsh 5*)

Ashwin almost seems determined to single-handedly improve India's over-rate this series. It's another rapidly paced maiden over against Smith.

AUS 3-126 (Smith 2*, Marsh 5*)

Ishant Sharma is back into the attack. His first delivery is angled into Marsh's ribs, and the batsman angles this square for a single.

Short again from Ishant and Smith is on the back foot to drive through the gap at cover. Just the one run.

Marsh leaves a delivery outside his offstump. The umpire calls a no-ball for overstepping.

APPEAL FOR CAUGHT BEHIND! Sharma sends it down short and Marsh looks to pull and there's a noise as it reaches Dhoni's gloves! The umpire shakes his head. Marsh swiped and missed that and replays show it clipped a piece of fabric on his shirt.

AUS 3-123 (Smith 1*, Marsh 4*)

Marsh drives Ashwin past extra cover for a single to put Smith on strike. The spinner, however, manages to keep the Australian captain under wraps, conceding just the one run that over.

AUS 3-122 (Smith 1*, Marsh 3*)

After a drinks break, Shami resumes India's attack with a bouncer over Marsh's head. That's a no-ball.

Shami sends down a short one to bookend the over. Marsh pulls it down into the ground and behind square leg for a single.

AUS 3-120 (Smith 1*, Marsh 2*)

After a number of drives straight to the fielder, Steve Smith is finally off the mark with an on-drive off Ashwin to long-on for a single.

Marsh will keep strike for the next over with a drive straight to the fielder at deepish mid-off, but he gets a single.

AUS 3-118 (Smith 0*, Marsh 1*)

A cautious Marsh sees out an Ishant Shami over. The paceman chalks up another maiden.

AUS 3-118 (Smith 0*, Marsh 1*)

We were experiencing some technical difficulties with the blog, earlier. Apologies for that. In the meantime, Shaun Marsh has got off the mark with a single as Australia looks to steady itself from a major wobble.

SHANE WATSON IS GONE FOR 52! LBW Ravichandran Ashwin. Australia 3-115

India gets a double-strike! Ashwin gets one to catch Watson on the pad as the batsman attempts the sweep shot! The momentum swings right back the tourists' way!

Shaun Marsh is the new man in.

AUS 2-115 (Smith 0*, Watson 52*)

Shami pitches one up to Smith but the Australian captain can't get it away. That's a wicket-maiden over.


Edged and gone! Rogers and Watson almost had a calamitous mix-up in the middle the previous ball as a run-out chance was spurned, but India have dismissed the opener the following delivery! Good length ball from Shami as he gets the outside edge, and wicketkeeper Dhoni does the rest. A good innings from the local lad comes to an end.

Steve Smith is the new man in.

AUS 1-115 (Rogers 57*, Watson 52*)

Ashwin is back into the attack with his spin deliveries. Watson gets forward and defends every ball for a maiden over.

AUS 1-115 (Rogers 57*, Watson 52*)

Rogers is on the back foot against Ishant and looks to punch it past mid-off. The fielder does manage to get a hand on it and restricts it to the one run.

The last ball of Ishant's over is short and pulled by Watson, who gets a single due to the fact he hit it straight to the man stationed at square leg.

Match pics: Day 1, Boxing Day Test

AUS 1-113 (Rogers 56*, Watson 51*)

Watson clips Yadav off his pads behind square leg. He gets a single. Rogers will keep strike the next over after clipping the bowler off his hips for one casual run to fine leg.

FIFTY FOR WATSON! 4x4s, 0x6s, 74 BALLS. AUSTRALIA 1-111 (Rogers 55*)

Watson gets Ishant through mid-wicket and he gets the single for his half-ton! He raises his bat to the MCG crowd - he has a decent record in Melbourne, and apart from that one dropped catch at the end of the first session, he's looked good value for his runs today.

AUS 1-110 (Rogers 55*, Watson 49*)

Watson gets a single off Ishant to move to 49, playing him out towards point.

Now Rogers plays a crisp shot through the gap at cover off the back foot. Nice shot. He'll get three runs as a reward.

AUS 1-106 (Rogers 52*, Watson 48*)

Rogers is looking for two as he tucks Yadav off his pads towards square leg, but opts for the single in the end.

Now Watson drives to the diving fielder at mid-off, and he gets a single as Virat Kohli scrambles to collect the ball.

Rogers gets a quick single with a tip-and-run shot to short cover, before Watson gets another run behind square leg.

FIFTY FOR ROGERS! 5x4s, 0x6s, 113 BALLS. AUSTRALIA 1-102 (Watson 46*)

A quick single to cover brings up the half century for Rogers! It's been a knock of serene authority, characterised by some thumping straight drives to the boundary.

AUS 1-101 (Rogers 49*, Watson 46*)

Ishant's first ball to Rogers, on the hunt for a half-ton, is a high bouncer that is called a no-ball.

AUS 1-100 (Rogers 49*, Watson 46*)

Watson flicks Yadav on to mid-wicket for a single.

Good shot from Rogers! Short of a length from Yadav and Rogers drives this off the back foot through the covers and picks up three runs.

FOUR! Watson cracks this towards cover, and there's a mix-up in the field! The man at mid-off didn't get the call from his partner in the outfield and it runs away to the boundary! That brings up the 100 for Australia.

AUS 1-92 (Rogers 46*, Watson 41*)

Ishant starts things off with a maiden over to Rogers.

Players are back on the field. Ishant Sharma will bowl the first over of the session to Chris Rogers.


India started the first session of the third Test in superb fashion, restricting Australia to four-and-a-half run-less overs, while taking the scalp of David Warner for a duck in the process.

But since then, Chris Rogers and Shane Watson have gradually come to grips with the Indian attack, with Rogers in particular looking impressive. Rogers' drive shots have been immaculate with a host of boundaries straight back past the bowler. Watson, meanwhile, has looked good whenever given the opportunity to play his pull shots.

Watson has had a life, however, when Shikhar Dhawan dropped him in the slips, spurning two attempts at the catch after Watson outside-edged Ishant Shami.

AUS 1-92 (Rogers 46*, Watson 41*)

Looks like we'll be able to squeeze in one more over before the lunch break.

Watson gets forward to guide Ashwin through midwicket for two runs.

AUS 1-90 (Rogers 46*, Watson 39*)

FOUR! "That's in the slot," says Trent Copeland on Grandstand as Shami pitches it slightly short of a length, allowing Rogers to rock back and cut hard for four runs to backward point!

AUS 1-86 (Rogers 42*, Watson 39*)

Rogers gets a single off Ashwin, moving him to 42 not out after guiding the spin bowler to cover.

Another quick over from Ashwin. Just the one off it.

AUS 1-85 (Rogers 41*, Watson 39*)

DROPPED! Mohammed Shami's first ball back catches Watson in no-man's land, procuring an outside edge, but Shikhar Dhawan drops him with a two-handed attempt in the slips, before the ball nearly bounces back into his hands on the ground, only for the fielder to botch the second attempt! A life for Watson and misery for Dhawan!

Shami sends one down short to Watson who pulls well, and gets it down along the ground to Ishant Sharma at deep square leg. WAIT A MINUTE! Misfield! It's squirmed between Sharma's legs and nearly bobbles over the rope, but Sharma collects it and throws it back in. Two runs.

AUS 1-83 (Rogers 41*, Watson 37*)

Blink and you missed it: Ashwin powers through a lightning quick maiden over to Rogers. As you were, ladies and gentlemen.

Latest match pictures

AUS 1-83 (Rogers 41*, Watson 37*)

Watson gets a single off Yadav's first ball, playing it away from his stumps for one run.

FOUR LEG BYES! Rogers tries to flick a shorter ball off his pads, but it clips his clothing before bounding past the diving Dhoni for four extras to fine leg!

Rogers gets a single, playing it wide of mid-on.

Yadav strays too far down the leg side and Watson plays it off his pads. It's decently timed but not a boundary candidate as he gets two runs on the last ball of the over.

AUS 1-75 (Rogers 40*, Watson 34*)

Ashwin gets through a maiden over to Rogers. After a middle section of the Australian batsmen reclaiming some dominance in this session, India is beginning to tighten things up once more.

AUS 1-74 (Rogers 39*, Watson 34*)

Spin bowler Ravichandran Ashwin is starting his first spell of the Test.

OH! Ashwin, around the wicket to Rogers, sends a flipper down the pitch and catches the batsman on the pads. It was going down the leg side so any appeals are quickly stifled.

Rogers does get a single off the penultimate delivery, tucking Ashwin to square leg.

AUS 1-73 (Rogers 38*, Watson 34*)

Yadav is back and Watson immediately gets a single off his first ball, playing the bowler off his pads to fine leg.

CHANCE! Rogers looks to glance a shorter ball to fine leg but it bobbles off the bat and hangs in the air, dropping just short of leg slip! It bounces clear for a single.

AUS 1-71 (Rogers 37*, Watson 33*)

Watson gets a single off Sharma, dabbing the bowler towards mid-on for a quick run.

Now there's a beachball on the sight screen! This will provide another short delay as Rogers gets ready. He exchanges a pair of singles with Watson.

AUS 1-68 (Rogers 36*, Watson 31*)

Watson gets one run off Shami, pulling again to deep midwicket.

AUS 1-67 (Rogers 36*, Watson 30*)

Rogers deals with an awkward delivery, paddling an Ishant delivery uppishly towards fine leg for one.

FOUR! Watson pulls again! This one's wider down the offside but that doesn't prevent Watson yanking this across the line and hard through midwicket for another boundary.

Watson plays the next ball firmly through the covers for one run. He moves into the thirties and is looking strong.

AUS 1-61 (Rogers 35*, Watson 25*)

FOUR! Glorious shot from rogers! He gets forward and hammers a crisp square drive off Shami through the gap at point for another boundary.

Shami sends down a shorter one and Rogers plays it off his hips behind square leg for a single.

FOUR! Now Watson's on the attack! Short from Shami and Watson pulls it hard! It's in the air for a time but it lands safely in the deep midwicket region and crosses the rope.

ANOTHER BOUNDARY! Watson's on this one like a flash as he smashes Shami through the offside for another boundary between cover and point.

AUS 1-48 (Rogers 30*, Watson 17*)

Ishant continues to Watson.

GOOD BALL! Ishant lands one on a great line and length and sees Watson beaten all ends up. It narrowly misses the edge.

Watson does get off strike with a single, playing Ishant to midwicket.

GREAT SHOT! Rogers is driving again and finds the gap at cover! The ball will die just before the boundary rope and there are thoughts of running four, but in the end Rogers rejects the chance and settles for three.

Latest pics from Day 1

AUS 1-44 (Rogers 27*, Watson 16*)

Shami has improved his line and length after his first expensive over. He concedes just the two runs with Rogers punching a shorter ball through the offside field.

AUS 1-42 (Rogers 25*, Watson 16*)

Oh dear! Brief appeals for leg-before from the Indian slips cordon as Rogers looks to dab this ball behind him to backward point. Absolutely bizarre footwork as he bats it down from behind his back leg. "Almost a scissor formation, that one," says Grandstand's Quentin Hull.

Rogers does get two runs with a back-foot shot through point off Ishant. He gets another single off the last ball of the over as Ishant misfields in his bowling follow-through, allowing the batsmen to cross for one.

AUS 1-39 (Rogers 22*, Watson 16*)

Shami's first ball of his second over is wide down the legside, with Dhoni diving to his left to stop the ball running free.

Watson then gets an edge along the ground, but it's picked up by the slips fielder. Some improvement from Shami already. He gets through a maiden.

AUS 1-39 (Rogers 22*, Watson 16*)

Watson picks Yadav off his pads for a single to fine leg.

FOUR! Another superb drive from Rogers! That's too full from Yadav and slightly outside the line of off stump. The result is another fabulous shot to the long-off rope.

Rogers paddles the next ball off his hips behind square leg for one run.

Lovely shot from Watson! The No.3 leans forward, opens the blade of his bat and guides a length delivery through the gap between gulley and the slips. He picks up three for it.

AUS 1-30 (Rogers 17*, Watson 12*)

FOUR! The first boundary of the day! It's too full from new bowler Mohammed Shami and Rogers dispatches it to long-off with one of those excellent straight drives he keeps in his locker.

WELL FIELDED! Rogers looks to drive square but edges it along the ground and it's well stopped by Rahane at backward point! Rahane dived low to his left and pouched the ball cleanly with both hands.

FOUR MORE! Wide and short from Shami and Rogers chases after it! He cuts hard through point and gets the second boundary of this over.

AUS 1-22 (Rogers 9*, Watson 12*)

This is the second delay today due to the sightscreen. Watson's stopped Yadav mid-run up as a camera crewmember darts across the sightscreen to everyone's chagrin.

OUTSIDE EDGE! Yadav gets Watson caught all inside-out as he procures an outside edge, but it glides past gulley and Watson picks up a trio of runs.

Rogers gets a single to put Watson back on strike. Watson gets two more to fine leg, clipped off his pads.

AUS 1-16 (Rogers 8*, Watson 7*)

Beautiful straight drive from Rogers as Ishant comes around the wicket. It's caressed excellently past the bowler and is just kept in by the fielder at the long-on rope. Three runs.

Watson gets one run at the end of the over to keep strike.

AUS 1-12 (Rogers 5*, Watson 6*)

Yadav pitches it full and Watson clips him to fine leg for two more runs.

Watson then puts Rogers on strike with a single to cover. Well run. Rogers retains the strike with a clipped shot to square leg for one.

AUS 1-8 (Rogers 4*, Watson 3*)

Watson's off the mark as he works Ishant Sharma through the leg side to pick up two runs.

He gets another single soon after with an attempted pull shot. It's not the best timing but good enough for one to short mid-wicket.

OH! Ishant bangs one in on a terrific line, deviating across the line of offstump to narrowly miss the edge of Rogers' bat. Good ball.

Latest pictures from Day 1

AUS 1-5 (Rogers 4*, Watson 0*)

Australia gets its first run of the day, and it's a bye! Yadav sends down a bouncer to Watson who watches it breeze past, but Dhoni fumbles the catch and the batsmen cross for an extra.

Rogers plays the next ball off his pads towards midwickets, but the debutant Lokesh Rahul can't get a clean pick-up, allowing the batsmen to get two runs.

ANOTHER MISFIELD! This is a poor spell in the field from the tourists as Rogers guides it straight along the ground to the man at backward point, who contrives to see it run between his legs. Another two runs.

AUS 1-0 (Rogers 0*, Watson 0*)

Wow. That's a very decent start from India. Can they go on with it? They've had great batting starts at times this series, but not one like this with the ball. Ishant Sharma to start a new over to Rogers.

Rogers blocks Ishant towards cover and Watson wants a quick single but is immediately sent back as the fielder fumbles.


CAUGHT! Warner's gone for a duck! Yadav pitches one on a good line and finds Warner pushing forward at it as he gets a nick to Shikhar Dhawan at second slip! That's not the Christmas present he nor the Australian public was waiting for!

Shane Watson is the new man in.

AUS 0-0 (Rogers 0*, Warner 0*)

Umesh Yadav starts his first over of the Test.

The first ball is short and fended away off Warner's ribs towards short leg. No run.

Warner blocks one off the middle of the bat towards mid-off, before defending another delivery to backward square leg. Still no runs for Australia.

AUS 0-0 (Rogers 0*, Warner 0*)

Right. Chris Rogers to face the first ball. Ishant Sharma bowls the first ball down the offside and it's left alone.

OUCH! After leaving a few more deliveries, Rogers shoulders arms to a short ball, but it keeps low and hits him right in the area no-one wants to be beat. It's caught him flush in the groin and Rogers takes a few seconds to gingerly settle himself. Ishant just looks on wryly.

The next ball is defended and that's a maiden over to start things off.

Right, that's welcome to country and the anthems all wrapped up. The Australians jog off - Rogers and Warner go off to collect helmets and gloves - while the Indians do their customary huddle on the field.

The players are being introduced as the Australians and Indians make a lap around the boundary rope. Chris Rogers and David Warner are of course wearing their pads in anticipation of opening the batting.

Anthems will be starting up shortly.


Lokesh Rahul will be making his Test debut for India today, while Varun Aaron is replaced by Mohammed Shami.


The good news is that there is no rain predicted for the entire day, so we should get a full day's play in on Boxing Day.

But warmth wise, Melbourne is its usual schizophrenic self with a maximum of 21 degrees Celsius forecast for the day. At time of print, it's still 14 degrees.

Team News

The big news today is Queensland Bulls batsman Joe Burns will be making his Test debut for Australia, replacing the injured Mitchell Marsh.

Another Mitchell also misses out today with Mitchell Starc out of the side after a below-par performance in Brisbane. He is replaced by another Bulls star in Ryan Harris who returns to the side.

But for those wandering about where Burns will slot in to the batting line-up, it will not be at number three where he usually bats for Queensland. Shane Watson will remain the No.3, with Burns coming in at six, according to stand-in captain Steve Smith.

Good morning everyone and welcome to Grandstand's live blog coverage of the Boxing Day Test. I'm James Maasdorp, ready to bring you all the action from the year's biggest day in cricket from the Melbourne Cricket Ground. How was your Christmas? I trust it was spent with family, friends, and an obscene spread of food on the dining table.

If you're not battling with the baying masses in your local department store this morning, stick with us throughout the day, tune in to ABC local radio and let the Grandstand team carry you through what should be a great day of cricket. 

Match pictures: Day 1, Boxing Day Test

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