Declaration imminent as Australia push lead to 486

Last Updated: Fri, Jan 27, 2012 02:39 hrs

Adelaide: Australia increased their lead over India to 486 runs at the cost of two wickets on Friday morning, reaching lunch at 154 for five with a declaration imminent on the fourth day of the fourth test.


Chasing a 4-0 series sweep, Australia had Ricky Ponting on 57 not out and Brad Haddin, who had made one, at the crease looking to build an unassailable tally before sending the tourists in to bat again.

Resuming on 50 for three after losing their top order in the last hour on Friday, Clarke and Ponting, who both contributed double centuries to Australia's first innings 604 for seven declared, combined for 71 runs before being separated.

Australia skipper Clarke had survived a scare on 30 when spinner Ravi Ashwin could have dismissed him caught and bowled before Umesh Yadav brought an end to his highly successful series as a batsman for 37.

The young quick beat Clarke for pace and there was enough of a noise to convince umpire Kumar Dharmasena that the Australian had got a nick before the ball went through to wicketkeeper Wriddhiman Saha.

Ponting also gave the Indians a chance when he was on 45 with a miscued pull shot off a Yadav bouncer that Rahul Dravid, running at full stretch, could not quite hold despite getting two hands to the ball.

The 37-year-old Tasmanian reached his 61st test half century soon afterwards with a single to the covers to continue his renaissance in this series after two years of poor form.

Mike Hussey made 15 in 42 minutes before angrily following his captain back to the dressing room when he was adjudged trapped leg before by paceman Ishant Sharma.

India, who topped the world rankings last year, were bowled out for 272 in their first innings on Thursday and will need a much stronger performance from their world class batsmen to avoid an eighth successive defeat in overseas tests.

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