05:10(IST)Agarwal gets off the mark with a solid push towards the cover region. That will make him feel more comfortable. It’s just been two overs but both the openers have looked well.

 

 

05:04(IST)Starc starts with a couple of full-tosses and Vihari wants to get some willow to it. The first ball went towards the slip cordon but then the opener adjusted well and playing out the remaining over with ease.

 

 

04:59(IST)And we are set to go. It’s not going to easy for Mayank Agarwal and Hanuma Vihari against the likes of Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins. Agarwal has scored some heavy runs in the domestic circuit but this is what it all boils down to. Vihari has opened for his state and mostly operates at the top-order. The two will look to play out few overs… This is going to be exciting.

 

 

04:55(IST)Players are out for the national anthem (Kohli’s favourite moment).

 

 

 

 

04:47(IST)Fifteen summers back, a storm called Virender Sehwag hit the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) in the Boxing Day Test. Rarely has a visiting batsman mesmerised the packed MCG crowd like Sehwag did on that day, clobbering 195 runs in little over 78 overs of mayhem in the middle.

Here’s Devadyuti Das’s exclusive interview with Sehwag:

 

 

 

 

04:45(IST)India have never lost a Test when Kohli has won the toss. India have won seven out of eight such Tests abroad, with one ending in a draw.

 

 

04:39(IST)Paine: I wasn’t too sure about what to do so I am happy to be bowling. We have a pretty inexperienced group so a win certainly helps. I would have laughed if someone would have told me last year that I will be the skipper for the Australian team in the next Boxing Day Test. Archie wanted to bat 100% but I told him that I was not entirely sure.

 

 

04:37(IST)Kohli: We will make the first use of this surface. We are batting first. This pitch looks like a nice surface but it looks a bit dry. So, it is going to be slower and slower. We are taking this Test as the last Test of this tour. We want to be at our best for this match. We have made three changes to the team.

 

 

04:34(IST)India have won the toss and will bat first.

 

 

04:33(IST)”There is a nice covering of grass on this pitch. The pitch curator has experimented with the playing surface a lot and eventually has left 15mm of grass on it. There is a bit of moisture present on the deck too. This pitch doesn’t crumble a lot and captain should elect to field first,” says Allan Border in the pitch report.

 

 

 

 

04:29(IST)Nathan Lyon has dismissed Virat Kohli seven times in Test cricket. Kohli, though, isn’t the only Indian batsman he has a wood over, neither is he the Indian batsman that the off-spinner has dismissed most number of times. This dubious record is shared by two other prominent names in India’s middle-order- Cheteshwar Pujara and Ajinkya Rahane, writes Rohit Shankar. Can India tackle the Lyon-threat in Melbourne?

 

 

 

 

04:22(IST)We still have some time left for the toss. Here’s Brydon Coverdale whispering you an Australian secret about Kohli:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

04:09(IST)Australia, meanwhile, have dropped Peter Handscomb at the expense of Mitchell Marsh who himself has been struggling to get going. The right-arm medium pacer’s bowling will help relieve pressure on the home side’s pace attack on a pitch that is not expected to offer as much for the bowlers as Adelaide or Perth. Part of the thinking also revolves around the potentially decisive fourth and final Test in Sydney, with only a three-day recovery period if Melbourne goes the full five-day distance.

 

 

04:05(IST)Let’s start with wishing Mayank Agarwal, Hanuma Vihari and Rohit Sharma a Merry Christmas. The Indian team management have decided to drop both KL Rahul and M Vijay, so one of Vihari and Rohit, most probably the former, will open alongside Agarwal. R Ashwin has not recovered fully from his abdominal strain and Ravindra Jadeja was named as the frontline spinner in the mix. The three pacers who have kept India in the running and taken them ahead when supported — Ishant Sharma, Mohammad Shami and Jasprit Bumrah — are thankfully untouched.

 

 

03:58(IST)Hello and welcome to our live coverage of the much-awaited Boxing Day Test match between Australia and India. India got their sojourn off to a terrific start by taking a 1-0 lead in Adelaide. Australia, however, bounced back in Perth and squared the series 1-1 with two more Tests to go.