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Australia may lead India in fourth Test in Brisbane but under-strength tourists continue to thrive

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Justin Langer is one of those rare sporting characters who is most intimidating when he smiles.

The Australian coach wore a typically disconcerting grin on Sunday morning, shortly before play began at the Gabba. He was talking about Mitchell Starc. Langer seemed certain it would be a big day for the left-arm paceman.

In the early stages of the first session, the prophecy was playing out. Starc’s pace was up, Cheteshwar Pujara and Ajinkya Rahane were a little jumpy, and the edges were coming thick and fast.

All was primed for one of those performances Starc has produced so often in home Tests — four or five quick wickets and a couple of bruises to bully out the middle and lower-order batsmen.

Langer’s faith in the New South Welshman is…

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