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Australia 405-6 at lunch in 1st test vs India

December 10, 2014

ADELAIDE, Australia (AP) — Captain Michael Clarke resumed his interrupted innings and progress toward a poignant century as Australia reached 405-6 in a rain-shortened opening session on the second day of the first cricket against India.

Clarke was 85 not out when lunch was taken after only 56 minutes of play and Steve Smith, who resumed at 72 not out, was unbeaten on 98 and approaching his fifth test century.

Clarke was on 60 when he was forced to retire hurt with severe back pain on the first day of a match which he has made a personal memorial to his friend and fallen teammate Phil Hughes.

After scans and pain killing injections, Clarke arrived early at the Adelaide Oval on Wednesday and batted in the nets before deciding to continue his innings.

Australia lost Brad Haddin to the last ball of the first day and Clarke came to the crease to warm applause at the start of play Wednesday, delayed 10 minutes because of earlier showers.

He was still obviously in pain, grimacing and at times audibly groaning when he was forced to put strain on his back. Clarke was also somewhat limited in his strokeplay, hesitant to extend and play off the front foot, though he played shorter deliveries with expert timing and placement.

Smith was somewhat overshadowed as Clarke continued his personal quest for a century with which he hopes to pay tribute to Hughes, the former test batsman who died after being struck by a short-pitched ball in a domestic match on Nov. 25.

Clarke was a pallbearer and delivered an emotional tribute to Hughes at his funeral service in Macksville, New South Wales, last week.

Smith continued to bat with confidence and authority, showing a wide variety of shots. He moved from 94 to 98 with an oustanding cover drive for four off Varun Aaron.

The India bowlers again mixed their lengths and seldom troubled the Australia batsmen. Mohammed Shami had figures of 2-99 and Aaron 2-109 when lunch was taken.

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