A probing Australian bowling attack struck twice to jolt India as opener Lokesh Rahul braved a tough morning session on the opening day of the second Test in Bangalore Saturday.
The hosts, who elected to bat first, were 72 for two at lunch as off-spinner Nathan Lyon got the wicket of Cheteshwar Pujara (17) just before the break.
Rahul, who was unbeaten 48, put on 61 runs for the second wicket with Pujara to try and steady the innings after India were hit hard by the Australian pacemen.
Pace spearhead Mitchell Starc gave Australia their first breakthrough after trapping opener Abhinav Mukund lbw for nought in the third over of the day.
The left-handed Mukund, who returned to India's Test XI after nearly six years since playing his last game in 2011, was drafted in place of injured Murali Vijay.
Rahul and Pujara then tried to grind their way out, surviving some hostile spells of pace from Starc and Josh Hazlewood at Bangalore's M Chinnaswamy Stadium.
First Test hero Steve O'Keefe, who claimed a career-best match haul of 12 wickets in Pune, was introduced in the eighth over of the innings as the visitors kept up the pressure.
Rahul survived a dropped chance on 30 when Peter Handscomb failed to cling on to a tough catch at short cover off O'Keefe's left-arm spin.
But it seems the spill by the fielder only strengthened Rahul's resolve at his home venue as he batted with grit against a barrage of short deliveries from Australian pacemen.
Virat Kohli's India, who lost the opening Test in Pune inside three days, need to win this match in order keep their chances of winning the four-game series alive.