Opener Gautam Gambhir completed his maiden double-century before Australia picked three quick wickets on the second day of the third Test against India in New Delhi on Thursday.

Gambhir, 27, notched up a career-best 206 and shared 278 runs for the fourth wicket with Venkatsai Laxman to take India to a commanding 515-6 at tea.

Laxman was batting on 160, having scored 17 fours, with skipper Anil Kumble on 16 at the break.

The Australians, who toiled for two wicketless sessions, tasted some success finally with Shane Watson accounting for Gambhir and Mahendra Dhoni and Simon Katich sending back the retiring Sourav Ganguly (five).

Desperate for a breakthrough, visiting captain Ricky Ponting brought himself into the attack but without much luck as the Indians made batting look really easy on the flat Feroz Shah Kotla track.

Gambhir completed his first double century with a single off Brett Lee (1-119) to the square leg and raised his bat to acknowledge the cheers from his teammates and the crowd.

The left-hander was dismissed soon after though when he inside-edged a seemingly harmless delivery from Watson onto his stumps. His marathon 380-ball knock was studded with 26 fours and a six.

Gambhir and Watson were to attend a disciplinary hearing later in the day after being involved in an on-field exchange on the first day of the match.

Ganguly, set to hang up his boots after the series, holed out to a diving Ponting at short cover.

Dhoni belted Katich for two fours over mid-on and a straight six in the same over but his belligerence proved short-lived as Watson had him caught behind for 27.

The stylish Laxman was stuck for 11 balls on 99 but reached the coveted mark with a cover-driven four off leg-spinner Cameron White, who conceded 63 runs off his 13 overs.

Laxman, who has a knack of playing big innings against Australia, and Gambhir denied the tourists any success in the morning session, putting on 97 runs off 26 overs after resuming on 296-3.

Lee bowled with purpose and intent and was unlucky after Laxman fended off a rising ball clumsily.

Other than that scare, Laxman — one short of playing his 100th Test –used his wrists beautifully to pull and drive the bowlers on both sides of the wicket.

India lead the four-Test Border-Gavaskar series 1-0 after winning the previous match in Mohali by 320 runs. The opener in Bangalore ended in a draw.

The fourth and final Test is slated to be played in Nagpur from Nov 6-10.