The much-awaited, hotly-contested Test series between India and Australia commenced at the picturesque stadium in Adelaide. By the looks of it, the track seemed one which was good to bat on, and the hypothesis was reinforced when the Indian skipper elected to bat first after the toss. The opening stand for India lasted merely two balls as just a hint of movement was enough for Mitchell Starc to rip off Prithvi Shaw, who jabbed at the ball hard and deflected an inside edge right on to his stumps.
India made a shaky start as Starc and Josh Hazlewood got the new pink ball dancing to their tunes. Despite setting up the tone early, luck favoured the tourists vehemently as quite a few outside edges did not carry to the slips. Mayank Agarwal was lucky too, as one of the outside edges fell away from the fielder right at the start of his innings.
While Cheteshwar Pujara and Agarwal decided to patiently grind it out, the Aussies kept the attack on with the ball as they tested both the batsmen with searing pace and shorter lengths.
Gritty passage of play
The scoring was brought to a near-standstill, however, things changed when a ripping scrambled seam delivery jagged back in sharply to dissect the gap between the bat and pad of Agarwal (17 from 40) and disturbed the furniture. India went in for Dinner at 41 for 2 after a gritty passage of play came to an end.
Resuming the action, Pat Cummins nearly gave a jolt to the Indians as he almost got Virat Kohli. Cummins banged one short that took a bit of the skipper’s glove before falling inches short of the close-in fielder at short leg. From the other end, an unperturbed Pujara continued in his trademark defensive style.
After steadily lasting for 108 balls alongside Agarwal for a 32-run stand, he stood his ground for another 68-run partnership with Kohli from 191 deliveries. The only time when Pujara (43 from 160) looked slightly flustered during the day was when Nathan Lyon was introduced into the attack.
Finding some demons in the pitch, Lyon continuously pitched the ball up slightly on to a patch that was offering perfect turn and bounce. Pujara padded quite a few deliveries, which flew to the fielders close by and his steely defence finally came to an end as one from Lyon took an inside edge, ricocheted onto his thigh, and went straight to leg slip.
Australia comes back strongly
After adding 66 runs at the loss of a solitary wicket of Pujara, India went to Tea at 107 for 3 with a tricky twilight phase awaiting them. Resuming the play, Virat Kohli, who had sublimely fought his way throughout the second session playing with utter discipline, proceeded alongside Ajinkya Rahane and completed his half-century.
After cementing India’s position with an authoritative 88-run stand, disaster struck India when Rahane called Kohli for a quick single failing to realize that there was not one on offer. Cummins at mid-off charged to get the ball to Lyon, who broke the stumps to run out the Indian skipper, which brought a gritty 74 to a disappointing end.
Once Australia took the second new ball, the momentum swung their way with lightning speed. Rahane (42 from 92), who started to walk away after he being hit plumb by Starc, was called back by Vihari for a review, although to no avail.
India lost their sixth wicket in form of Hanuma Vihari (16 from 25), who was trapped on the front from Hazlewood. At the end of the day’s play, India were 233 for 6 with Ravi Ashwin and Wriddhiman Saha unbeaten at 15 and 9, respectively. The duo batted well to see out the toughest passage of play.
Here’s how Twitter reacted:
Yes yes yes….no no no. Oh nooo…..that’s the only way the Kohli runout and what followed it can be described. #AusvInd
— Aakash Chopra (@cricketaakash) December 17, 2020
Hang tough and glad you’re enjoying the coverage 👍 https://t.co/fbHxCrNlxt
— Shane Warne (@ShaneWarne) December 17, 2020
🙈 oh gosh! runout…. criminal for just one run in days cricket. #AUSvIND
— Pragyan Ojha (@pragyanojha) December 17, 2020
— Mithun Manhas (@MithunManhas) December 17, 2020
Game changing wicket. Just before the new ball is available….#AUSvIND
— Jason Gillespie 🌱 (@dizzy259) December 17, 2020
233-6 is a reasonable day for India…Somehow get 45 of last 4 wickets…we have a reasonable chance in this game…All rests on crucial morning session tomorrow!#INDvAUS
— Gagan Chawla (@toecrushrzzz) December 17, 2020
If #ViratKohli didn't out, Team's score would be between 280 to 300.
350 would be a challenging score for Australia.
— देवेंद्र कुमार (@DevinderBJP) December 17, 2020
— Prasenjeet Digar (@impdigar) December 17, 2020
Team INDIA Batting Card
— Cricket Fan (@V18R45Cricket) December 17, 2020
Ravichandran Ashwin should open with Mayank agrwal for India..As a pinch hitter for test( who can survive new ball easily and has better technique) and make it easier for upcoming batsmen @vikrantgupta73 @rawatrahul9 #AUSvsIND
— Falgun Patel (@Falgun1872) December 17, 2020
— Rajeev Jalandhra (@JalandhraRajeev) December 17, 2020
Brilliant batting by #ViratKohli and he was looking so determined to make a huge mark. Rahane just sold him down the river at a crucial point in the game and got himself out as well not soon after. Definitely the turning point in the game. #AUSvIND #AUSvsIND
— Giri Subramanian (Off Work) (@giri26) December 17, 2020
India made good recoveries throughout the day but will rue Virat's untimely and unfortunate dismissal, he looked determined to score big. Good day of Test Cricket.#INDvAUS #AUSvIND #AUSvsIND #PinkBallTestOnSony
— cricket_advait 🏏🇮🇳 (@advait_anjankar) December 17, 2020
Source: The source of this content is our cricket news platform Crictracker.
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