Australia v India: Cheteshwar Pujara scores century as tourists dominate first day

Australia v India: Cheteshwar Pujara scores century as tourists dominate first day

The rating received by the iconic Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) from ICC is merely the minimum mark required for a cricket pitch to keep it from attaining demerit points. The hosts were bowled out for 164, thereby handing India their maiden Test win in Australia. While the dependable Pujara (130*) struck another solid century, his third of the series, to defy the Aussie bowlers and stay unbeaten at stumps, Agarwal (77) impressed with his second half-century in as many Tests.

According to the report, the ICC confirmed the rating on Tuesday.

India leads the four-test series 2-1 after wins in the first test at Adelaide by 31 runs and last week's Boxing Day test to retain the Border-Gavaskar trophy.

Fortunately, the average rating means that MCG has escaped losing the global status.

The Queenslander scored just 81 runs in his maiden two Tests batting in the middle order previous year against Pakistan at 20.25, and had more success with the ball - taking seven wickets with his leg spin on the tour of the UAE.

Head managed just 15 runs in three matches during Australia's 2-1 defeat to South Africa in November, while Short made a duck in his only match.

This was not about making history, he said, more about proving that a team already ranked number one in the world in tests could do the business on the rock hard wickets of Australia as well as the slow, brown pitches of home.

According to ICC Rules, a particular venue losses its worldwide status when the demerit tally totals to five demerit points over the course of five years.

The MCG had been under pressure after India batted for nearly two days in their first innings on what appeared to be another lifeless deck. Cheteshwar Pujara had attributed their sedate batting to the nature of the track.

Spinner Nathan Lyon, who claimed the wicket of India batsman Hanuma Vihari on day one, was less than impressed with Australia's strategy. MCG has always been a happy hunting ground for Australia.

Australia's bowling coach David Saker conceded the quicks and Paine had been at odds about what tactics to employ on a green-tinged SCG pitch on day one.

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