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Experienced duo lead Australia fightback

Experienced duo lead Australia fightback
Mike Hussey and Ricky Ponting lead the Australia fightback on day three of their Boxing Day Test against India in Melbourne.

Veteran batting pair Mike Hussey and Ricky Ponting prevented an Australian batting collapse with half-centuries each on day three of the Boxing Day Test against India in Melbourne.

Hussey put his first innings golden duck behind him to finish unbeaten on 79 as Australia closed on 179-8.

Under-fire ex-captain Ponting also contributed 60 and shared an 115 run fifth wicket stand with Hussey as the Aussies recovered from a nightmare start.

Opening bowler Umesh Yadav took three quick wickets before Ishant Sharma dismissed the hosts' skipper Michael Clarke to leave Australia 27-4.

The experienced duo steadied the ship for the Aussies but more late wickets left them with a lead of just 230 with only two second innings wickets remaining.

Play had earlier resumed with India at the crease but they suffered a collapse of their own.

Ben Hilfenhaus produced an excellent spell to take 5-75, including the scalps of Rahul Dravid and MS Dhoni, as the tourists lost seven wickets for 68 runs.

Yadav was the spearhead as the visitors responded well but the efforts of Hussey and Ponting ensured Australia were still in contention heading into the penultimate day.

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Olympic medal table header
CountryGold medalSilver MedalBronze MedalT
United StatesUnited States14141038
Olympics flagOlympic Athletes from Russia811928
Great BritainGreat Britain57618
Today's Olympic highlights header

Friday's key events

· The athletics schedule begins, with 100m sprinter Dina Asher-Smith among the names in action on the opening day. The men's 10,000m final concludes the action, with Team GB's Sam Atkin and Marc Scott taking part in the absence of 2012 and 2016 champion Sir Mo Farah (1am-2.30pm)

· Victoria Thornley is Team GB's representative in the women's single sculls final (1.33am)
· Great Britain will be going for gold in the men's eight final (2.25am)

· Team GB duo Molly Renshaw and Abbie Wood take part in the women's 200m breaststroke final, but new Olympic record-holder Tatjana Schoenmaker of South Africa is the hot favourite (2.41am)
· Luke Greenbank has very realistic ambitions of picking up a medal in the men's 200m backstroke final (2.50am)
· There is also British representation in the women's 100m freestyle final, although any medal for Anna Hopkin would be a surprise (2.59am)
· With one gold and one silver already under his belt at these Games, Duncan Scott goes again in the men's 200m individual medley final (3.16am)

· Bryony Page will be looking to repeat her 2016 heroics in the women's event (5am-7.30pm)

· Bradley Forbes-Cryans will be looking to emulate Rio gold medallist Joe Clarke in the men's kayak event (6am-9am)

· The women's tournament enters the quarter-finals, with Great Britain facing Australia at the Ibaraki Kashima Stadium (10am)

> Today's schedule in full
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