Australia closed Day 4 of the Boxing Day Test with a 326-run lead over India after reaching 261-7 in the second innings.
The hosts wasted no time ending India's innings—Mitchell Johnson struck twice while the tourists mustered just three more runs.
With the bat, wickets fell at regular intervals, but half-centuries from Chris Rogers and Shaun Marsh propped up the score and set up an interesting Day 5.
Much will depend on captain Steve Smith's confidence in the pitch and his bowlers, but India must win to avoid a series defeat.
|India, 1st Innings Scorecard|
|Vijay||c S Marsh||b Watson||68||211||135|
|Dhawan||c Smith||b Harris||28||65||51|
|Pujara||c Haddin||b Harris||25||89||71|
|Kohli||c Haddin||b Johnson||169||379||272|
|Rahul||c Hazlewood||b Lyon||3||9||8|
|Dhoni||c Haddin||b Harris||11||27||23|
|Ashwin||c and b Harris||0||6||4|
|Shami||c Smith||b Johnson||12||45||30|
|U Yadav||c Haddin||b Johnson||0||2|
|I Sharma||not out||0||9||6|
|Extras||1nb 0w 0b 1lb||2|
|Total||all out (128.5 ovs)||465|
The day began with Johnson in brutal mood—the second delivery was a short ball that reared up to Umesh Yadav, and it would have been too good for many a batsman, let alone a tail-ender. He feathered it behind.
Mohammed Shami did not last a great deal longer, and with a deficit of 65 runs, India were keen not to let Australia get away.
If they were heartened by reports of David Warner's hand injury—he was seen on television footage in the nets playing very cautiously and taking his hand off the bat with almost every shot—they were soon given reason to think again.
Warner flew at the opening bowlers, and he was particularly brutal to Yadav. With a series of crisp fours and all-out attack, he scored 32 from just 17 balls at one stage while Rogers got going more sedately.
|Australia, 2nd Innings Scorecard|
|Watson||c Dhoni||b I Sharma||17||42||34|
|Smith||c Rahane||b U Yadav||14||46||27|
|S Marsh||not out||62||182||131|
|Burns||c Dhoni||b I Sharma||9||21||17|
|Haddin||c Dhoni||b U Yadav||13||40||27|
|Johnson||c Rahane||b Shami||15||46||27|
|Extras||5nb 1w 0b 8lb||14|
|Total||for 7 (75.0 ovs)||261|
Warner slowed down, but not before the lead had swelled appreciably, and he finally fell for 40 after missing a delivery from Ravi Ashwin's spin and being trapped leg before wicket.
Shane Watson and Smith—surprisingly, given his sensational form—both got into the teens before following Warner back into the pavilion.
Smith, caught flicking a poor ball to leg slip, could scarcely believe his dismissal.
Rogers and Marsh made the two big contributions of the innings, but they spent just seven overs together. The former was bowled by Ashwin via an inside edge, while Joe Burns' Test debut ended inauspiciously with a single-figure score and an edge behind via Ishant Sharma.
There were more starts—Brad Haddin and Johnson both spent around 45 minutes in the middle with Marsh, but neither went on, leaving Marsh with Ryan Harris at stumps.
Australia will scent blood, but both sides have a chance going into the final day, which could make for a thrilling finale to the third Test of a fascinating series.