Perth - Australia's openers made a solid start on the first
day of the second Test against India in Perth on Friday, with under-pressure
Aaron Finch not out 28 and Marcus Harris on 36.
After captain Tim Paine won the toss and elected to bat, the
home side were 66 without loss at lunch in scorching conditions in the
inaugural Test at the 60 000-capacity Perth Stadium.
On a pitch with a distinct greenish tinge, Harris looked
solid throughout in only his second Test, smashing six fours in his 76-ball
Finch, who failed in the opening Test at Adelaide, lived
more dangerously and survived a review decision and mix-up between the wickets
that saw him diving back into the crease to avoid being run out.
With the score on 45 and his own tally on 20, Finch was
struck on the pad by the first ball bowled by seamer Mohammed Shami.
Umpire Chris Gaffaney felt the ball was going over the
stumps and a review confirmed his decision, with ball tracking having it
passing clearly over the bails.
The next ball Finch was also struck on the pad and again
Gaffaney turned down the vocal Indian appeal. They didn't review this one but
replays showed ball tracking had it clipping the top of the stumps.
India are 1-0 up in the four-Test series after winning in
Adelaide by 31 runs as they seek their first series win on Australian soil.
They were unable to consider star spinner Ravi Ashwin and
batsman Rohit Sharma for Perth, with both injured.
Ashwin, who took six wickets in the 31-run win in the first
Test in Adelaide, has a side problem, while Sharma has a back injury.
They were replaced by batsman Hanuma Vihari and fast bowler
Umesh Yadav, with India opting for an all-pace attack.
Australia retained the same 11 from Adelaide.