Ponting, Hussey forced to re-build

FORMER Australian captain Ricky Ponting and under-siege Michael Hussey have guided Australia to 4/81 in its second innings in the Boxing Day test at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.

SCOREBOARD

AUSTRALIA 333, 4/81

Ponting 33 no
Hussey 29 no

INDIA 282

Australia leads by 132 runs.

The home side was looking to build on a lead of 51 runs heading into its second innings, but a calamitous performance by the top order left the side reeling at 4/27.

But Ponting (33 no) and Hussey (29no) - the most scrutinised players in the Australian side - formed a strong partnership which halted the flow of wickets and pushed the lead out to 132 runs at tea.

Earlier, Indian paceman Umesh Yadav (3/24) destroyed the Australian top order, claiming the wickets of Dave Warner (5), Ed Cowan (8) and Shaun Marsh (3).

Ishant Sharma (1/21) disposed of Michael Clarke (1), before Ponting and Hussey began their resistance.

Australia dismiss India

Australia has dismissed India for 282 runs heading into lunch on the third day of the Boxing Day test.

The visitors looked comfortable at the start of the day at 3/214 but crumpled in the morning session, losing seven wickets for 68 runs.

Recalled seamer Ben Hilfenhaus (5/75) was the chief destroyer, dispatching overnight batsmen Rahul Dravid (68) and Ishant Sharma (11), plus the scalps of Virat Kohli (11) and MS Dhoni (6).

Australia's other quicks Peter Siddle (3/63) and James Pattinson (2/55) chimed in with the wickets of VVS Laxman (2), Ravichandran Ashwin (31) and Zaheer Khan (4).

Australia will return after lunch with a lead of 51 runs.



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