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India lose opener Vijay to reach 64-1 at lunch against Australia

Cricket - India v Australia - Fourth Test cricket match - Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association Stadium, Dharamsala, India - 26/03/17 - Australia's Josh Hazlewood celebrates after dismissing India's Murali Vijay. REUTERS/Adnan Abidi
Cricket - India v Australia - Fourth Test cricket match - Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association Stadium, Dharamsala, India - 26/03/17 - Australia's Josh Hazlewood celebrates after dismissing India's Murali Vijay. REUTERS/Adnan Abidi

By Amlan Chakraborty

DHARAMSALA, India (Reuters) - India lost opener Murali Vijay to Josh Hazlewood in a hostile morning session to reach 64 for one at lunch on the second day of their fourth and final test against Australia on Sunday.

Lokesh Rahul was batting on 31 at the break, inching towards his fifth fifty of the series, with the reliable Cheteshwar Pujara on 22 at the Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association Stadium.

India are still 236 runs behind Australia's first innings total of 300 all out in the decider of the four-test series which is currently level at 1-1.

Hazlewood and Pat Cummins oozed aggression and relentlessly probed the Indian openers, especially when they hit the cracks on the pitch which offered wholesome bounce for them.

Hazlewood was rewarded for constantly attacking the line outside the off-stump with Vijay edging him to Matthew Wade to depart for 11.

In the paceman's previous over, Vijay's edge had fallen just short of wicketkeeper Wade.

Rahul also had his fair share of luck. The right-hander, then on 10, edged Cummins but the ball brushed Matt Renshaw's finger tips at first slip before racing to the boundary.

Pujara, who batted for more than 11 hours in the previous test in Ranchi to score a double century, looked characteristically solid at the other end, the second wicket partnership already worth 43 runs.

While Australia denied any easy run to India, the hosts would not be too unhappy to have emerged from the tough session losing just one wicket.

(REditing by Sudipto Ganguly)

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