India lost Murali Vijay early as they came out to bat on Day 4 in the Third and final Test match against New Zealand in Indore’s Holkar Stadium.

Cheteshwar Pujara and Gautam Gambhir steadied the ship. The duo scored runs at a brisk pace.

Gautam Gambhir, who came out to bat after Monday’s shoulder injury scare, scored an impressive 50 of 55 balls. The batsman looked in full flow as he scored boundaries all round the park. Guptill caught him on Patel’s bowling.

Pujara also completed his half-century.

India lead New Zealand by 385 runs at lunch on Day 4. Indian strategy will be simple. They will seek to score quickly and amass huge lead before declaring. They would also want to give the bowlers ample time to put the pressure on New Zealand batsmen.

Riding on star off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin’s 20th haul of five wickets or more, India put themselves in a commanding position reaching 18/0 to take an overall lead of 276 runs over New Zealand at stumps on day three.

Ashwin led the Indian charge with six wickets and two brilliant run-outs along with left-arm spinner Ravindra Jadeja (2/80) to bundle out the visitors for a paltry 299 just after the tea break in response to India’s first innings total of 557/5 declared.

(IANS inputs)