Smith, Warner pile on runs for Australia

DHARAMSALA: Steve Smith and David Warner put on 121 runs for the second wicket as Australia reached 131/1 at lunch on day one of the fourth test here on Saturday.

At the break, Smith was unbeaten on 72 runs, while Warner was 54 not out, after Australia won the toss and opted to bat.

In a major blow for the hosts, Virat Kohli was ruled out of this match as he hadn't recovered fully from his shoulder injury, sustained on day one of the third test in Ranchi.

Warner had what might prove a valuable reprieve when dropped by third slip Karun Nair off Bhuvneshwar Kumar (0-37) on the very first ball of the match.

At the other end, Umesh Yadav (1-29) bowled Matt Renshaw (1) in the second over. It brought Smith and Warner together as they built the highest second-wicket partnership of this series.

Australia scored at nearly five per over as 59 runs came in the first hour of play. Warner and Smith put on 50 runs off just 59 balls, and thereafter extended their stand with 100 coming off 146 balls.

Smith carried on his superb form and reached his 21st test half-century off 67 balls. In doing so, he crossed 400 runs for the series. Later, Warner scored his 24th test half-century off 72 balls.

Australia reached 100 in the 25th over as they dominated this morning session.

The four-match series is level at 1-1. Australia won the first test in Pune by 333 runs, while India won the second test in Bengaluru by 75 runs. The third test in Pune was drawn.