Cricket
Smith's pride in 'resilient' Australia
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Smith's pride in 'resilient' Australia

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A battling third-Test draw in Ranchi ensured the series between India and Australia will go to a decider.
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Captain Steve Smith expressed his pride after Australia showed their battling qualities to earn a hard-fought third-Test draw with India.

The tourists faced a tough challenge on the fifth day in Ranchi, resuming their second innings on 23-2 and still 129 runs behind India's first-innings total of 603.

But a gritty 200-ball, 72-run knock from the unbeaten Peter Handscomb and Shaun Marsh's half-century highlighted the Aussies' fighting spirit to leave the series tied at 1-1 with one match to go.

"It was nervous," said Smith, who will lead his side in the final Test in Dharamsala, which begins on Saturday. "It was a pretty good test. I'm proud of the way the boys stuck it out. That's what we want to be. Resilient.

"They [Handscomb and Marsh] played beautifully. They didn't look like they would get out for a while. It was crucial for us, at such an important time."

However, Smith was disappointed not to have capitalised on winning the toss and batting first, with his 178 and Glenn Maxwell's 104 contributing to a below-par score of 451 in favourable conditions.

He added: "It was important to score big first-innings runs. We left ourselves a bit short there, 450 was not enough to win this match.


"Maxwell was sensational. That's the way we want him to play. Pat Cummins, in his first game in a very long time, he bowled beautifully.

"It's not too often you spend 210 overs in the field. It was a long two days. The boys really dug deep. I am really proud.

"It's a massive game in Dharamsala, we can't wait to get there."

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