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Steven Smith (left) and Glenn Maxwell played their strokes with conviction and dictated terms on day 1 of the 3rd Test against India PTI

From 50 for 0, Australia were reduced to 140 for 4 on Day One of the third Test at Ranchi. Though captain Steven Smith had already notched up a half-century, the visitors were staring down the barrel. At the other end was Glenn Maxwell, replacement for injured Mitchell Marsh. The onus was on the duo to take their team out of the woods amidst India‘s collective bowling effort. However, the pitch slowed down as the match progressed, as Smith and Maxwell played their strokes with conviction and dictated terms. In the process, the duo registered second 100-plus stand of the series. Full Cricket Scorecard: India vs Australia, 3rd Test at Ranchi

Smith thus far was the only centurion of the series. The batsman who came painfully close to the three-figure mark was Cheteshwar Pujara (92). Making full use of the flat Ranchi track, Smith scored his 19th century off KLX balls. However, before that, Maxwell had churned out his maiden half-century in the longest format. Live Cricket Updates, IND vs AUS 2017, 3rd Test, Day 1

This is Smith’s sixth century (and second in India) against India in 10 Tests (his highest score against reads 192.) The No. 1 batsmen in ICC Test Rankings will look to pile more runs and put India on the back foot. Maxwell, on the other hand, did not play the first 2 Tests. Given the track demanded an extra spinner, he was given a nod ahead of Marcus Stoinis in this all-important contest. Now that he has got his eye in, he will look to make amends and convert his half-century into a three-figure mark.