Australia v India: Josh Hazlewood says hosts hold Boxing Day edge

Josh Hazlewood
Australia fast bowler Josh Hazlewood took 5-68 on his Test debut against India in Brisbane

Josh Hazlewood says India's failure to intimidate Australia has given his side a psychological advantage ahead of the Boxing Day Test in Melbourne.

India tried to antagonise Mitchell Johnsonexternal-link in the second Test in Brisbane, which Australia won by four wickets.

"I guess it backfired on them a little bit with them trying to get stuck into us," fast bowler Hazlewood said.

South Africa also host West Indies in Port Elizabeth, while New Zealand face Sri Lanka in Christchurch.

Australia v India, third Test

Australia lead the four-match series 2-0 after stand-in captain Steve Smith oversaw the win at the Gabba in the absence of Michael Clarke, who was injured during their 48-run victory in the first Test in Adelaide.

Queensland batsman Joe Burns is set to make his Test debut at the MCG in place of the injured Mitchell Marsh, who misses out with a hamstring problem, with pace bowler Ryan Harris fit again.

All-rounder Shane Watson will play at the MCG despite being left "shaken" after he was struck on the helmet by a James Pattinson bouncer in training on Tuesday.

Joe Burns
Joe Burns, right, will make his Test debut for Australia at the MCG against India

Australia batsman Phillip Hughes died in November after he was struck on the neck by a ball during a domestic match, but opener David Warner says Watson is fine.

"He went out there and practised as well as I've seen him hit the ball," Warner said. "He got back on the horse and trained again which was fantastic."

India all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja has been ruled out of the tour with a shoulder injury and has been replaced by Akshar Patel.

South Africa v West Indies, second Test

Batsman Temba Bavuma is poised to become only the sixth black South African to play in a Test match for the country.

Bavuma, 24, will take the place of wicketkeeper Quinton de Kock, who has been ruled out the rest of the series with an ankle injury. AB de Villiers is set to take the gloves.

The Proteas, who thrashed West Indies by an innings and 220 runs in the first Test in Centurion, are likely to include a spinner because of the conditions in Port Elizabeth, with Imran Tahir set to be selected ahead of seamer Kyle Abbott.

Temba Bavuma
Temba Bavuma is poised to become only the sixth black South African to play in a Test match for the country

Experienced batsman Shivnarine Chanderpaul, who played in West Indies' only Test win in South Africa at Port Elizabeth in December 2007, expects an improvement in their batting.

"We're disappointed after Centurion We just have to put it behind us and take it as a learning experience," said the 40-year-old.

"South Africa are the number one team in the world, but I think we're a better team than we showed."

New Zealand v Sri Lanka, first Test

Sri Lanka will play their first Test match since Mahela Jayawardene retired from the longer format of the game in August and his position at number four against New Zealand is likely to go to Lahiru Thirimanne.

The two-match series will also one of the last played by veteran Kumar Sangakkara, 37, who will quit one-day cricket after the World Cup and has yet to finalise how long he will continue playing international cricket.

Sri Lanka's bowling attack will be weakened by the absence of leading spinner Rangana Herath, who has been ruled out for three weeks with a hamstring injury.

Lahiru Thirimanne
Batsman Lahiru Thirimanne is expected to take the number four spot in Sri Lanka's batting line-up following Mahela Jayawardene's retirement

New Zealand wicketkepeer BJ Watling says Sri Lanka will miss Jayawardene, but the Black Caps will not underestimate their opponents.

"Mahela Jayawardene is a big loss for them," he said. "But they've definitely got some good young players coming through."

The game at the Hagley Oval, a venue which will host its first Test, is the first match New Zealand will play in Christchurch since the city was hit by a major earthquake in February 2011.

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