Cheteshwar Pujara scored a brilliant unbeaten 130 as India finished Day 1 of the fourth test at Sydney on a commanding score of 303/4.
India made 2 changes to the playing XI, bringing in Lokesh Rahul and Kuldeep Yadav in place of Rohit Sharma and the injured Ishant Sharma respectively, while the hosts dropped Mitchell Marsh and the out of form Aaron Finch and brought in Marnus Labuschagne and Peter Handscomb.
After winning the toss and electing to bat first, India suffered an early jolt as Josh Hazlewood broke through by getting Rahul caught at first slip by Shaun Marsh for 9 runs.
The 26 year old had scores of 2, 44, 2 and zero in the four innings of the first two Tests of this series. He had been dropped for the MCG game and only had a recall here because Rohit Sharma chose to fly back to India to see his newborn baby girl. Unfortunately, Rahul failed to make the most of his opportunity, and questions will again be asked about his mental state of mind.
Mayank Agarwal playing only in his second test along with Cheteshwar Pujara batted superbly by stitching together a partnership of 116 runs for the second wicket before Nathan Lyon got the wicket of the well set Agarwal, caught at long on by Mitchell Starc for an impressive 77.
Virat Kohli walked and began his innings superbly with an excellent four off the bowling of Hazlewood. He looked solid in his knock of 23 but fell immediately in thefirst over after tea to the same bowler, caught down the leg side by captain Tim Paine.
Indian vice captain Ajinkya Rahane made 18 before a ferocious bouncer from Starc saw him give an easy catch to Paine.
Pujara and Hanuma Vihari kept the Aussies bowlers at bay and saw the day through without any further alarms by adding an unbeaten 75 runs for the fifth wicket, as India ended Day 1 at 303/4.
33,678 was the crowd at the SCG for the first day of this fourth and final test.
India at Stumps on Day 1- 303/4 – Mayank Agarwal 77, Cheteshwar Pujara 130*. ( Josh Hazlewood 2/51).