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Cricket | International

Dhawan enjoys crazy debut

Shikhar Dhawan enjoyed his debut at the expense of Australia as he ended the third day on 185 not out, and India on 283 without loss in the third test in Mohali on Saturday, as the hosts trail by only 125 runs.

Dhawan mercilessly tormented the Aussie bowling attack with 33 fours and two sixes in his 168-ball innings - this puts him only four boundaries behind the most on debut - Reginald Foster (1903) hit 37 fours.

Murali Vijay was on a sedate and composed 83 off 181 balls.

Earlier, India reached tea on 156 without loss.

Having faced one over for three runs before the luncheon interval, Dhawan and Vijay immediately laid into the opposition attack following the break.

Dhawan launched into a breathtaking assault, taking Peter Siddle for two boundaries, before dispatching Mitchell Starc to the long-leg boundary and smashing two more boundaries off Moises Henriques - all of this to get his score to 23.

No bowler was spared, but Xavier Doherty was at the receiving end of a particularly hostile six deliveries when Dhawan collected 18 runs with cover-drives, a reverse paddle and a deft clip off his pads.

All the while, Vijay played his normal game, defending, rotating the strike, and on the odd occasion joining in the fun of taking the attack apart. He faced 85 deliveries, with four fours and two sixes.

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Three overs before the tea interval, the left-hander brought up his maiden century with five overthrows for the quickest ton on debut - 85 balls - and when the players left the field, he had 21 fours to his name.

A personal best from Starc helped the visitors to 408 when they were dismissed shortly before lunch.

Australia resumed the day on 273 for seven, and together with Steven Smith, Starc took the attack to the home team.

The pair added 75 runs in 20 overs before Smith was snared by Pragyan Ojha who angled one in, dragged Smith out of his crease and Mahendra Singh Dhoni whipped off the bails with Smith still outside the crease, eight runs short of what would have been his maiden test century.

One run short of his own landmark century and personal first-class best, Starc drove at a length delivery from Ishant Sharma, got a healthy edge and Dhoni dived to his left to complete the catch.

His effort of 144 deliveries which included 14 fours, however, have all but ensured that the hosts cannot lose this match.

Nine runs later, India wrapped up the innings when Ravichandran Ashwin trapped Xavier Doherty for five.

Both Sharma and Ravindra Jadeja finishing with three wickets each.

Report Day 1
Report Day 2

INDIA: S Dhawan, M Vijay, CA Pujara, SR Tendulkar, V Kohli, RA Jadeja, MS Dhoni (capt & wk), R Ashwin, PP Ojha, B Kumar, I Sharma

AUSTRALIA: DA Warner, EJM Cowan, PJ Hughes, MJ Clarke (capt), SPD Smith, BJ Haddin (wk), MC Henriques, XJ Doherty, MA Starc, PM Siddle, NM Lyon


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