Australia 149-4, leads India by 182 at lunch on day 4
BRISBANE, Australia (AP) — Steve Smith was under pressure to help Australia build a big lead Monday as it tried to set up a victory against India in the series-deciding test at the Gabba.
Smith was unbeaten on 28 and batting with rookie allrounder Cameron Green as Australia reaches lunch on the penultimate day at 149-4, an overall lead of 182.
The Australians were coasting at 89 without loss before losing four important wickets in the space of six overs, sparked by Marcus Harris (38) gloving a catch to wicketkeeper Rishabh Pant off a well-directed ball from Shardul Thakur in the 25th over of the innings.
David Warner, who was 20 when Australia resumed at 21 without loss on day four, had comfortably compiled 48 from 75 deliveries before he was out in the next over, trapped lbw by Washington Sundar to make it 91-2.
Mohammed Siraj chimed in with two wickets in an over to remove Marnus Labuschagne, who scored 25 from 22 balls, and Matthew Wade (0) in the same over as Australia slumped to 123-4.
Smith was voted player of the match after scores of 131 and 81 in the third test in Sydney, where India batted through the last four sessions to salvage a draw and ensure the series was alive heading to the fourth and last match.
He'll need another big score to get Australia into a better position at a ground where it hasn't lost a test since 1988. The highest successful chase in a Gabba test was in 1951, when Australia finished 7-236.
Thakur and Sundar, who frustrated the Australian bowlers in a 123-run seventh-wicket stand on Sunday that lifted India out of serious trouble at 186-6 and helped the tourists reach 336, have been in the thick of action throughout the match.
Each took three wicket in Australia's first innings, Sundar's first experience of test cricket and Thakur's second test match.
The series is level at 1-1 with five sessions remaining and rain on the forecast at times across the last two days. India needs only a draw to ensure retains the Border-Gavaskar trophy.
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