Mitchell Starc dropped out of Australia's team for the final Ashes Test, with Tim Paine's visitors making two changes.

Australia arrived at The Oval with the Ashes already secure following their 185-run victory at Old Trafford, which gave them a 2-1 series lead.

Having impressed in tour matches, Starc came into the line-up in Manchester, replacing James Pattinson.

However, the 29-year-old paceman - who scored an unbeaten 54 in the fourth Test and took four wickets - did not made the cut for the match that began in London on Thursday, with Australia selecting Peter Siddle instead.

The other change to Australia's side saw Mitchell Marsh replace Travis Head, a switch Paine had revealed in his pre-match news conference on Wednesday.

Paine won the toss on Thursday, electing to bowl first.

Australia team for final Ashes Test: David Warner, Marcus Harris, Marnus Labuschagne, Steve Smith, Matthew Wade, Mitchell Marsh, Tim Paine (captain, wk), Pat Cummins, Peter Siddle, Nathan Lyon, Josh Hazlewood.

Mitchell Marsh has been preferred to vice-captain Travis Head in the only change to Australia's squad for the final Ashes Test at The Oval.

All-rounder Marsh will make his first appearance of the series against England as the tourists strive to win the series after going 2-1 up to retain the urn at Old Trafford last weekend.

Batsman Head has made just one half-century in the series and captain Tim Paine says Marsh was selected to ease the bowlers' workload.

"Looking at the conditions and the series being a long and tough one, we've kept the bowling group that was together for the last Test match.

"They've bowled a lot of overs and we feel that bringing Mitchell in will ease a little bit of the workload on them.

"It was a really tough call on Travis Head, who's had a great start to his Test career but we wanted a bit more bowling depth in the squad to cover what looks like a really good wicket and to be able to look after our big, fast bowlers.

"Mitchell Marsh has also had a couple of hundreds in Test cricket so we've got full faith in him doing the job with the bat as well."

Paine added: "The reason Travis isn't playing is because we felt like we needed a little bit of extra bowling at the end of a long series.

"Mitch Marsh is our all-rounder and like we have with our bowlers, it's not necessarily Travis being dropped.

"We've been really clear with Travis on why he's not playing this game. He's had a fantastic start [to his Test career], he's played nine or 10 Tests and has got a very healthy average but we want to get the make up right to win this Test match.

"Unfortunately we had to make a really tough call on someone and it happened to be Travis. He's a huge part of Australian cricket future, he's a gun young player and he's getting better all the time.

"It's disappointing for him he's not playing in this Test match. He'd dearly love to, obviously, but we'll go back to Australia, conditions will be different. There's no doubt he's in the top six or seven batsmen in our country."

England replaced Jason Roy and Craig Overton with Sam Curran and Chris Woakes for the fifth Test, which starts on Thursday.


Australia squad for fifth Ashes Test: David Warner, Marcus Harris, Marnus Labuschagne, Steve Smith, Mitchell Marsh, Matthew Wade, Tim Paine (captain), Pat Cummins, Peter Siddle, Mitch Starc, Nathan Lyon, Josh Hazlewood.

Australia sought to hammer home their advantage in the third Test on Friday after England were skittled for 67 to leave their hopes of retaining the urn virtually extinguished.

England arrived at Headingley hoping to make hay in the sunshine but their latest batting collapse inside 28 overs left them with a 112-run first-innings deficit, with the tourists reaching tea at 82-3 and extending their lead to 194.

Joe Root's team had been 54-6 at lunch and lost their remaining four wickets within 23 balls of the second session in posting their lowest ever total at Headingley, and their lowest in the Ashes in 71 years, as Josh Hazlewood returned 5-30.

Wickets continued to fall during Australia's second innings but England's flagging attack were only able to do so much as Marnus Labuschagne (13 not out) and Travis Head (17 not out) came off with a insurmountable target firmly in their sights.

Having entered lunch in such a perilous position, England's tail was unable to wag and Chris Woakes, Jos Buttler, Jofra Archer and Jack Leach all departed for single figures to leave Joe Denly's 12 as the top score in a woeful total.

It was the fourth time since the start of 2018 that England were dismissed for 85 or less, though the mood briefly changed when Australia opener David Warner was struck on the pads by Stuart Broad to depart without score.

Marcus Harris (19) continued the head-scratching approach to batting when clean bowled attempting to drive Jack Leach's first delivery.

Usman Khawaja (23) had no control over a shot to Woakes that was caught by Jason Roy in the slips, but Labuschange and Head reached tea without too much trouble and Australia firmly on top.

Travis Head says there is "definitely a chance" Steve Smith will feature in the third Ashes Test at Headingley as he is looking "a lot better".

The influential Smith retired hurt in the first innings of the second match at Lord's having been struck on the neck by a bouncer from paceman Jofra Archer, only to return later that day.

However, Smith did not take part at all on day five after suffering with delayed concussion and his status for the contest in Leeds, which starts on Thursday, remains unclear.

Concussion protocol will see Smith closely monitored, yet Australia colleague Head is encouraged by the star batsman's improvement in recent days.

Although Head acknowledged "it will probably be taken out of Steve's hands", he believes his team-mate is recovering in good time.

"There's definitely a chance [of Smith playing]. He's feeling better day by day," Head told talkSPORT. "I know he was a lot better yesterday.

"He'll have a run around and a light training session [on Tuesday] and that's key. It's not about overloading over these next couple of days. We're keeping him fresh, giving him the best opportunity to play.

"He doesn't really need a lot of time in the nets. He'll want to, but it's about making sure he's fresh, his mind, brain and everything is fresh. He's got no more signs of that concussion.

"He's ready to go, he doesn't need any extra preparation. He's been batting beautifully and playing beautifully.

"I'm sure he doesn't need to do anything over the next couple of days, he can walk straight out and play and get the same results hopefully. Fingers crossed."

Smith's role in the Australia ball-tampering scandal last year, for which he served a 12-month ban, has seen him jeered by English fans throughout the series so far.

Head felt the crowd was largely supportive at Lord's and suggested the way the former Test captain has responded to adversity shows him to be among the very best.

"He showed over the last two weeks how classy he is," Head said of Smith.

"The booing and whatnot, there wasn't a lot of it at Lord's. The Lord's crowd was fantastic throughout the week. There were little bits and pieces of it.

"I think the way he went about it showed great character. The way he's played over the last two weeks has been fantastic, under high pressure - high pressure from himself, the importance he puts on himself.

"I think he's one of the best that has probably played the game and he's showing that at the moment."

Travis Head hailed Steve Smith as "one of the best players of spin in the world" as the England selectors reportedly ponder picking Jack Leach for the second Ashes Test at Lord's.

Smith scored magnificent centuries in both innings in the opening match of the series at Edgbaston, inspiring Australia to a 251-run victory.

The former captain was outstanding in his first Test since serving a one-year ban for his part in the ball-tampering scandal, making the England bowlers suffer following a great start in Birmingham.

Jofra Archer looks set to replace the injured James Anderson, while Leach could get the nod with Moeen Ali out of sorts with bat and ball.

Head, who made a half-century in the second innings and 35 in the first, says Smith will not be concerned about the prospect of facing Leach, despite not having such a great record against left-arm tweakers.

"He's one of the best players of spin in the world," Head said.

He added: "He's fantastic to bat with. He sucks the momentum out of the opposition and the way he batted in this game, it was nice to be at the other end with him.

"It's nice, I feel like I can get in a nice rhythm with him at the other end. You know he's not going anywhere - but I pride myself on making a contribution and trying to have really good partnerships.

"He's obviously in great form so it's nice to be at the other end and he obviously takes a bit of pressure off myself. They are trying to think of some plans to stop him so I was able to go a little bit under the radar, which was nice.

"So hopefully [there will be] a little bit more batting to do in the next four Tests with him."

Stuart Broad claimed two wickets before Australia recovered from a shaky start to reach 83-3 on the first morning of the Ashes.

Touring captain Tim Paine won the toss and opted to bat in the opening Test at Edgbaston, but his side were soon in trouble as the vastly experienced new-ball pairing of Broad and James Anderson started superbly, extracting seam movement to regularly beat the bat.

Broad, bowling notably fuller and posing a continued threat, removed openers David Warner and Cameron Bancroft for two and eight respectively in a superb first spell.

Australia also lost Usman Khawaja to Chris Woakes prior to lunch, but Steve Smith (23 not out) held firm in his first Test innings since he was suspended for his role in last year's ball-tampering scandal and Travis Head provided some much-needed impetus in reaching 26 not out.

Anderson - a fitness doubt ahead of this match - did not bowl again in the morning after an opening four-over burst that yielded figures of 0-1. He briefly left the field after that spell, although it was not clear whether his lack of overs prior to lunch was due to an injury scare or cautious management of the 37-year-old's workload.

Warner's brief innings was certainly not short of incident. Firstly, he was given a life on one when an edge down the leg side off Broad went unnoticed and England failed to call for a review.

In Broad's next over, England wasted a review after umpire Aleem Dar correctly turned down an lbw appeal. Broad did trap Warner in front four balls later, but replays showed the full-pitched delivery would have missed leg stump, meaning the batsman should have sent the decision upstairs.

Warner's dismissal was predictably greeted with jubilation by sandpaper-waving fans eager to remind the opener of his Cape Town ball-tampering shame.

Bancroft, representing Australia for the first time since that saga, soon became a second victim for Broad, edging to Joe Root at first slip having been squared up by one that left him.

A successful review from England then accounted for Khawaja, who got the faintest of edges to a Woakes delivery.

However, Smith would not be shifted and Head, after beginning his innings with 15 dot balls, scored freely to lift the pressure on Australia, who opted to leave out Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood on a day when showers were forecast in the afternoon.

Australia have played 43 games across all formats in the time Steve Smith and David Warner have been banned - and the statistics suggest the two should have no problem walking back into the XI for the upcoming Ashes.

Ex-captain Smith and former vice-captain Warner are available to be selected for their country again from this week when the 12-month bans for their roles in the Cape Town ball-tampering scandal come to an end.

Here, with the help of Opta, we take a look at how Australia's batsmen have fared across all three formats over the past year without the duo.

 

TESTS (P9 W3 D2 L4)

The first Test without Smith, Warner and Cameron Bancroft, who was given a nine-month ban for his part in the saga, ended in a 492-run loss to South Africa as the Proteas wrapped up a 3-1 series success.

Matthew Renshaw was one of those drafted in for that final match in Johannesburg, but having scored a cumulative 13 across two innings, he has not appeared in a Test since. 

Peter Handscomb initially filled Smith's spot at four and averaged fewer than 19 across seven innings, though Joe Burns was one of the success stories, the opener's 180 against Sri Lanka last month helping him to an average of 50 over the past year.

Travis Head (51) had a better average than Burns in that time, but openers Aaron Finch (27.8) and Marcus Harris (32.7) were unable to replicate Warner (48.2), particularly when they struggled in a 2-1 home series loss to India.

Having made his Test debut in October, Marnus Labuschagne batted at four in the recent two-match series with Sri Lanka, yet his average of 26.3 pales in comparison with Smith's 61.4.

 

ODIS (P18 W7 L11)

With a World Cup on English soil looming on the horizon later in 2019, Australia's 50-over fortunes were looking grim as little as three weeks ago.

A five-match series in India began with defeats in the opening two matches, meaning the world champions had lost 11 of 13 ODIs since the Newlands scandal.

But a stunning comeback sealed a 3-2 win over Virat Kohli's men, and Australia have continued that momentum in the UAE, where successive Finch hundreds mean the tourists lead Pakistan 2-0 in a best-of-five contest.

Those centuries have lifted Finch's ODI average across the past year to 39.4, while the likes of Usman Khawaja (60.9), Shaun Marsh (59.3) and Handscomb (52.1) have all benefitted from opportunities they may not otherwise have had.

Two months out from the start of the World Cup, the holders appear to be finding form at just the right time, and the returns of Smith and Warner will leave head coach Justin Langer nursing a welcome selection headache.

 

TWENTY20S (P16 W7 L8 NR1)

Smith's ban had little effect on his nation's T20 form - the 29-year-old having not featured in that format since March 2016 - yet Warner left a bigger void to fill having scored more than any other Australian in the shortest format.

Despite that, four leading batsmen averaged more than Warner's 26.7 over the previous 12 months.

Finch amassed 465 runs, though that total comes with the caveat that 324 of those were accrued in his first three innings. In his past 13 T20 knocks for Australia, Finch has averaged only 10.8.

All-rounder Glenn Maxwell (averaging 34), D'Arcy Short (28.3) and Head (27.3) were the others to shine in Warner and Smith's absences.

Travis Head dedicated his first Test century to the late Phillip Hughes on an emotional opening day of Australia's second match against Sri Lanka. 

Australia dominated proceedings at the Manuka Oval in Canberra as Sri Lanka's bowlers toiled after an impressive start, Head and Joe Burns both registering hundreds.

Australia slipped to 28-3 but Head (161) and Burns (172 not out) put on 308 to put the hosts on course to complete a series sweep - they won the first Test by an innings and 40 runs in Brisbane.

Head went to three figures with a boundary through mid-off and immediately looked to the sky in remembrance of his former team-mate and mentor. 

"Yeah [I dedicated it to] a few, but Hughesy as well, a little bit emotional to be honest," Head told SEN Radio. 

"It was a little bit about trying to get the momentum back, it was a little like last week where we lost quick wickets and were a little bit under the pump, it was trying to get that momentum back. 

"Last week I started my innings really well, left the ball really well, just tried to get that momentum back and get it to swing back our way. I felt like Burnsy and I were able to do that again. 

"To go out there and continue from last week, personally and as a team we put ourselves in a great position to get hundreds and weren't able to, that was the disappointing part, but it was really good today to get out there, and once we got our chance, to make it massive." 

Burns - who registered his fourth hundred for Australia - was delighted for his team-mate, believing Head's innings will establish the left-hander's place in the Test side. 

He said: "It's one of those innings today that'll get him started in his Test career, get that first one out of the way and open the floodgates. I just wanted to hug him as hard as I could for as long as I could and just keep batting with him. It was really enjoyable. 

"Full credit to Trav, he comes out with great intent, puts the bowlers off their mark, and turns three early wickets into straightaway pressure back on the bowlers. 

"And you could sense out there the left-hand/right-hand combination, and being able to score in different areas and keep the scoreboard ticking all day, meant their bowlers couldn't get that build-up of pressure. That's the key to a good partnership and really satisfying to do that for a long period."

Joe Burns and Travis Head helped Australia recover from a poor start to grab control of the second Test against Sri Lanka in Canberra.

Opener Burns (172 not out) and Head (161) notched Australia's first Test centuries since October to lift the hosts – who lead the two-match series 1-0 – to 384-4 at stumps on day one.

The pair combined for a 308-run partnership after Sri Lanka had reduced Australia to 28-3 in the first ever Test at Manuka Oval, where the tourists were left to rue numerous missed chances.

Vishwa Fernando (3-99) capitalised on some early movement and poor batting before Burns and Head came together, putting on Australia's highest Test partnership against Sri Lanka.

Having won the toss and elected to bat, Australia gifted Sri Lanka a dream start as Marcus Harris (11) chased a wide delivery from Fernando and picked out debutant Chamika Karunaratne at point.

Fernando struck again in his next over, Usman Khawaja also going after a wide one and edging to Kusal Mendis at second slip for a duck.

On debut, Karunaratne started well and picked up his first wicket with his fourth ball, a great delivery seeing Marnus Labuschagne (6) edge behind to put Sri Lanka in complete control.

But Burns and Head managed to steady the innings, the former given a life on 34 that would prove costly for the tourists.

Burns was dropped at slip by Dhananjaya de Silva off Dilruwan Perera, a rare chance through the first half of the day as Sri Lanka gave away far too many boundaries.

In complete control, Burns brought up his fourth Test century with a quick single before tea as he continued to dominate alongside Head.

But Sri Lanka also dropped Head, a chance going down at gully off Kasun Rajitha when the left-hander was on 87.

Head then brought up his maiden Test hundred with a fine drive off Dilruwan as Australia pushed on.

Sri Lanka thought they had Head for 148 and in bizarre fashion, a cut shot off Dhananjaya ballooning up off his boot, but replays showed the ball hit the ground after his foot.

Head was aggressive and given another life on 155, Dhananjaya dropping a return chance he should have taken.

But Sri Lanka finally made another breakthrough, Fernando trapping Head lbw and Kurtis Patterson was lucky not to fall first ball off Dhananjaya as the chances continued to go begging, Lahiru Thirimanne dropping a sitter at short leg.

Burns and Patterson (25) got to stumps to complete a good day for Australia on a pitch that had improved for batting as the overs ticked by.

Travis Head hailed Pat Cummins' dismissal of Dimuth Karunaratne with the last ball of day two as "massive" after Australia took command of the first Test against Sri Lanka.

Travis Head and Marnus Labuschagne made their highest Test scores while Pat Cummins struck with the last ball on day two to put Australia on course for victory over Sri Lanka at the Gabba. 

A fifth-wicket stand of 166 between Head - who made 84 after being dropped on 29 - and Labuschagne (81) put Australia firmly on top before Suranga Lakmal claimed a third five-wicket Test haul in an eventful final session. 

Lakmal finished with 5-75 as Australia lost their six wickets for 75 runs to post 323 all out in reply to Sri Lanka's meagre 144 in Brisbane. 

The tourists - without Lahiru Kumara for a long spell in the field due to injury - were in deep trouble on 17-1 at stumps – still trailing by 162 - after Cummins removed Dimuth Karunaratne under the lights.

Sri Lanka were in need of early wickets when Australia resumed on 72-2 and they picked up two in quick time, Marcus Harris (44) cutting Kumara to Lahiru Thirimanne at point before Lakmal removed nightwatchman Nathan Lyon.

Head and Labuschagne consolidated, however, finding the gaps and rotating the strike well, and Australia moved into the lead when the former stylishly eased Lakmal through midwicket.

Yet their stand should have ended in the first over after the break when Head nicked Lakmal behind, but wicketkeeper Niroshan Dickwella was unable to hang on with one hand.

Head moved to 50 courtesy of a mistake in the field and the confident Labuschagne raised his bat for the first time at Test level, both players prospering during their century partnership.

They continued to tick along in obdurate fashion until Labuschagne threw his wicket away, offering a simple chance to Thirimanne at short mid on attempting to hit Dhananjaya de Silva over the top.

Australia ended the second session in a strong position on 249-5 and Head moved into the 80s with a classy back-foot drive when Lakmal got his line slightly wrong, but Sri Lanka's spearhead made an impact with the second new ball in his next over.

The paceman got one to shape back in and trap Head lbw and then saw off Tim Paine with his next delivery, Kusal Mendis diving forward to take a fine catch.

Kumara was absent due to a combination of back and hamstring troubles, but Dushmantha Chameera came back following a short spell off the field to get Cummins caught behind for a 21-ball duck.

Debutant Kurtis Patterson - who made two hundreds for a Cricket Australia XI against Sri Lanka last week - looked assured at the crease in reaching 30 until he became Lakmal's fifth victim.

Mitchell Starc smashed a rapid unbeaten 26 before Cummins had the final say, conjuring up a peach of a delivery to get Karunaratne caught behind and leave the home team heading into Australia Day scenting an emphatic victory. 

Peter Siddle is back from the one-day international wilderness after Australia overhauled their squad for the upcoming ODI series against India.

Veteran paceman Siddle has not played an ODI since 2010 but the 34-year-old has been included in the 14-man team for the three-match series, starting in Sydney on January 12.

Batsman Usman Khawaja – who last played an ODI for Australia in January 2017 – has also been recalled, along with star spinner Nathan Lyon, Mitch Marsh and Peter Handscomb following Australia's revamp.

Travis Head, Chris Lynn, D'Arcy Short, Ben McDermott and Ashton Agar have been dumped following the 2-1 series loss to South Africa last year as Australia look ahead to the Cricket World Cup in England.

Captain Aaron Finch, Alex Carey, Shaun Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Marcus Stoinis and Adam Zampa are the only survivors from that side after Nathan Coulter-Nile succumbed to a back problem, while selectors opted to rest Test trio Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins.

"After a disappointing period in ODI cricket, the National Selection Panel along with team coaches have reviewed our performances across this format and we've identified a number of key areas that we feel we need to improve in order to help put this team in the best possible position to turn this period around," National selector Trevor Hohns said.

"With this in mind and the World Cup looming, we've selected players we feel provide us with the flexibility to play a variety of roles at different stages of a match."

Hohns continued: "It's wonderful to have Peter back in the squad for the first time since 2010. His white ball cricket has improved considerably the older he has got, and his selection is great reward for his professionalism and strong leadership qualities."

"Usman is a batsman we know can put vital runs on the board at the top of the order, and Peter [Handscomb] is not only a fine player of spin bowling, he's also a batsman we know can hold an innings together while keeping the scoreboard ticking over. Mitch gives us another all-round option with his ability with both bat and ball," he continued.

"Travis Head, D'Arcy Short and Chris Lynn have been unlucky to miss out. All three have had opportunities to cement their spots, but unfortunately, they have not been as productive as we would have liked in recent times when playing ODI cricket for Australia."

 

Australia squad: Aaron Finch (captain), Jason Behrendorff, Alex Carey, Peter Handscomb, Usman Khawaja, Nathan Lyon, Mitch Marsh, Shaun Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Jhye Richardson, Peter Siddle, Billy Stanlake, Marcus Stoinis, Adam Zampa.

Travis Head expressed his disappointment with the "very poor" conduct of a section of Australia fans who booed Mitchell Marsh on day one of the third Test against India at the MCG.

Marsh came back into the side at the expense of Peter Handscomb and was booed by certain members of the crowd on Boxing Day when he came on to bowl his first over.

Head felt those who voiced their disapproval were out of order.

"I don't think it's great," Head said. "Obviously we've seen it with [Virat] Kohli as well but for Mitch, who worked his bum off today, I thought he bowled exceptionally well.

"I thought he created pressure in tough conditions and fought really hard. I don't think any Australian cricketer in Australia deserves to be booed.

"I understand the Victorian crowd, Petey obviously missing out, but I think it's pretty poor for Mitchy to cop that."

Head expects Marsh to take the booing on the chin when the tourists resume on 215-2 on day two.

The batsman added: "I think Mitch is a character to get on with it. As he showed, he did his business, he did his work, he bowled exceptionally well, did the job that was needed for the team and that's what Mitch has always done.

"He's always been someone to get the energy around the group, lead from the front and I think he did that and in tough conditions to grab the ball and bowl the way he did was really good. He created a couple of chances as well.

"I think the way he showed today, I think great team man, great fella, worked his backside off for the boys today and I think he did a wonderful job so yeah disappointing and hopefully that won't be the case for the next couple of days."

 

Travis Head conceded India had the better of the opening day of the Boxing Day Test as the tourists frustrated Australia's bowlers to finish 215-2.

Having elected to bat, India made a solid but watchful start in Melbourne as their new-look opening pair of Mayank Agarwal and Hanuma Vihari settled in, the latter scoring just eight of 66 balls.

Pat Cummins eventually removed Vihari but it took until just before tea before he was able to dislodge debutant Agarwal for a hard-working 76.

Chances came and went for the prized wicket of Virat Kohli, the India skipper reaching stumps 47 not out with Cheteshwar Pujara unbeaten on 68 to complete a frustrating day for the hosts.

"It was a tough day," Head told a media conference. "A grinding day of Test cricket and they batted well.

"We created pressure and we have seen for the whole series there hasn't been a high run-rate for the day.

"Sometimes that's Test cricket. It is not always going to be clear sailing and good wickets, and today was a case when we had to grind it out.

"We would have liked to have four or five wickets, but it is a massive morning [on Thursday] and if we can still get them down two wickets it will be good while the ball is still reasonably hard and a couple left handers coming later on.

"Hopefully as the game goes on we will get more spin, but we have been able to restrict a lot of runs today even though we didn't get the wickets we would have liked.

"It was disappointing to leave that [Kohli] chance but it happens."

The pitch offered little assistance to Australia's bowling attack, with Cummins the only one to enjoy any reward.

"Cummins led from the front," Head added. "He bowled hard and aggressive, used his bouncer well, and extracted something from the wicket. And he put pressure on Indian batsmen all day.

"I thought it would offer a little bit more than it did in the first couple hours. We thought it would offer more life leading into it. If you hit the wicket the pacers were able to get some pace off it but in other parts they weren't able to."

India captain Virat Kohli appeared to be "steeled" by boos from Australia supporters on day three of the first Test in Adelaide, according to Ricky Ponting.

A section of the crowd jeered Kohli when he walked on to bat after Australia coach Justin Langer on Friday criticised the way he celebrated when India took wickets.

Langer told Fox Cricket: "If we did that at the moment we'd be the worst blokes in the world."

Former top-order batsman Ponting, who was himself booed during the third Ashes Test at Edgbaston in 2009, was disappointed by the fans responsible at Adelaide Oval and feels it may have benefited Kohli.

"I don't like seeing it at all. It didn't worry me as a player when it happened in England a couple times. You've almost got to accept it as acknowledgement for what you've done in the game. But I'd rather not see that happen at all," he told cricket.com.au.

"It'll be water off a duck's back, I'm sure. He's probably had worse things happen to him on a cricket field, I would have thought, than getting booed by a couple of spectators as he walks on.

"If anything, it might have steeled him a little bit more.

"He [was] hardly playing a shot [early in his innings] and he looked like he wanted to really ground the Aussies into the deck."

Kohli made 34 before falling to Nathan Lyon in the final session, with India reaching stumps at 151-3 and with a 166-run lead.

Travis Head, whose 72 on his home ground anchored Australia's first innings of 235, echoed Ponting's sentiments.

"He's a pretty good player and probably doesn't deserve to be booed but that's how it is. It's probably not needed but that's the crowd," said Head.

India bowler Jasprit Bumrah claimed the boos had no effect on Kohli or India, who are simply focused on matters taking place on the pitch.

"I don't think these things are important to us because for us, what happens in that circle is important," said Bumrah.

"Everything else, we can't control. If they want to, they can do whatever they want. As long as we are doing well, we are happy."

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