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India remove Australian openers

26 January, 2008

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ADELAIDE, Australia (AFP) - Australian opener Matthew Hayden was dismissed by India shortly after notching his 30th Test century on the third day of the fourth and final Test against India.

In reply to the tourists' 526, the home side were 225 for two at tea, with a watchful captain Ricky Ponting on 28 and Mike Hussey on 20.

Hayden made 103 and put on 159 for the opening partnership with Phil Jaques before the Indians struck back to remove both after lunch.

Jaques was the first to go, clean bowled when he missed an attempted sweep from Indian captain Anil Kumble, who was relieved to have finally secured a breakthrough.

In a sign of what could possibly come later, the ball spun sharply to get through Jaques.

Hayden offered no chances in reaching his century, although he did survive a confident LBW appeal from Irfan Pathan on 67.

He missed the third Test in Perth with a hamstring strain, but was determined to make up for lost time and was barely troubled by the bowlers for most of his innings.

However, just after reaching his century, he was bowled by a superb ball from exciting young paceman Ishant Sharma, which jagged through his defences.

Hayden had faced 200 balls, hitting 10 fours and one massive six straight down the ground off Kumble.

The 36-year-old has 410 runs in the series at 82.00.

India were hampered by the absence of opening bowler R.P. Singh, who is off the field with a hamstring strain suffered late on the second day.

However, teenager Sharma was again impressive and had 1-32 from 18 overs.

He was unlucky not to have claimed the wicket of Ponting, who went perilously close to playing the ball on to his stumps while on eight.

The Australian skipper, wary of his poor record against Indian spinner Harbhajan Singh, was cautious at the crease and the hosts' run rate was slower than usual, scoring less than three runs per over.

By tea Ponting had been at the crease for 111 minutes, faced 70 balls and hit just one boundary.

India's first innings total of 526 was based around a 153 by batting maestro Sachin Tendulkar and an 87 from Kumble.

End.

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