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India eats into the deficit, but Murphy strikes twice.

India eats into the deficit, but Murphy strikes twice.

India eats into the deficit, but Murphy strikes twice.

Todd Murphy, an inexperienced offspinner, scored twice during the session as Australia responded with an improved bowling performance. With Rohit Sharma unbeaten on 85, India was 26 runs behind at lunch on the second day of the Nagpur Test.

R Ashwin and Rohit, the overnight batsmen, gave India a strong start to the day by scoring runs early on. As Rohit pulled Cummins over deep square leg and Ashwin slog-swept Lyon over midwicket as their partnership frustrated Australia during the first half of the session, both were fortunate to get boundaries off outside edges and managed to hit sixes apiece.

Before Australia responded, the two continued their partnership into their forties and were beginning to settle down. Murphy hit Ashwin on the front pad by following a line from around the wicket. Australia were confident in going for a review, which paid off when Ashwin was LBW on 23 despite the fact that the on-field call was still not out.

After that, Australia faced a determined Cheteshwar Pujara, who got a boundary early. However, the strategy was to his detriment because he tried to sweep a delivery from outside leg and missed a simple catch to short fine leg, giving Murphy his third wicket. After hitting Rohit on the pad, the spinner had also asked for a review, but Australia lost it on both counts, for a catch and for LBW.

Virat Kohli joined Rohit as India fell to 135/3. The two of them played well together, with Kohli hitting a few overpitched deliveries to the boundary to bring India closer to Australia's 177.

Brief Scores: Australia 177 all out (Marnus Labuschagne 49; R Jadeja 5/47) lead India 151/3 (Rohit Sharma 85*l Todd Murphy 3-35) by 26 uns

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