Relishing my battle with Virat Kohli, says Tim Paine


India may also be keen to welcome back seam-bowling all-rounder Hardik Pandya who has joined the squad after recovering from a back injury sustained during the Asia Cup.

India vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane was on Monday confidence personified, saying his rhythm and counter-attacking mindset could help him rack up not just a ton but a double at the Boxing Day Test. Ashwin, meanwhile, needed to be evaluated over the next 48 hours, the coach said.

However, going by the Indian team's first practice session here on Sunday, Rohit looked tentative while jogging around the MCG as well as while batting in the nets. He's a great player and great bowlers get out the great batsmen. "I won't say individually whether someone needs to do that or not, but as a batting unit, we have to definitely put up a better performance", Kohli added.

Vijay showed a lot of character in the second innings at Perth. Pete's a very good player of spin bowling and Mitch is a good player of spin too.

"With regards to Rishabh, given the intensity of this series that we are playing right now, so after this series, we want to keep him fresh".

"It is a big concern". Any batsman whether you are a top-order batsman, or a lower order batsman or a bowler who can just hang on. you need to just watch the ball really really closely from the bowler's hand. The MCG pitch offered little for bowlers of any stripe in the drawn Ashes test a year ago, being rated "poor" by the International Cricket Council in an embarrassment for the organisers.

The Indian coach also hedged his bet on.

"Absolutely not. 1-1 in a series in Australia and we know we had our chances in Perth as well".

Cheteshwar Pujara drives on his way to a serene 68 not out
Relishing my battle with Virat Kohli, says Tim Paine

Ravi Shastri quoted that Hardik Pandya will give them an option to give the flawless balance to the side.

"On the eve of any selection meeting, the selection committee is given a fitness report of all the players", Prasad told reporters in Melbourne. "We will take one step at a time".

With the four-Test series between India and Australia now locked at 1-1, India Test Vice Captain Ajinkya Rahane on Monday urged his team's batsmen to step up and support the bowling unit in the third Test starting at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) here on Wednesday.

This is the fourth Test Ashwin is missing out of the 11 India have played away from home this year. "So the boys know what they can do", said Shastri, who refused to accept that the Indian team's morale had taken a hit after losing in Perth.

Following a surprise 2-1 loss to New Zealand in the United Arab Emirates, Pakistan take on the Proteas over the next three weeks, starting at Centurion on Boxing Day. Paine said he understands that Kohli never liked to lose.

"Fantastic - why, what's wrong with his behaviour?"

Ravi Shastri called him an "absolute gentleman", Kohli maintained he doesn't need to explain his actions.

By the time he departed, India were 6-251 and back in the game.

It's 'Team Meeting' Season In Boston
Having already completed nearly 40 percent of their schedule, they are 5½ games back of the first-place Toronto Raptors. On Friday, Celtics coach Brad Stevens said Horford had done more work and was being assessed day-to-day.