India are taking on Australia in a four-Test series to defend their Border-Gavaskar Trophy, winning it during their last visit, in 2018-19. However, they are off to a wobbly start, losing the first Test in Adelaide, which happened to be their first day-night affair Down Under.
In what turned out to be no less than a horror show on Day 3, the Indians squandered their first innings lead. They handed Australia the advantage in the first of the four-Test series, for the Border-Gavaskar Trophy, in Adelaide, on Saturday.
The hosts won the clash by eight wickets, as India face reality check and a challenging task ahead in the remainder of the Tests. Meanwhile, we analyse the talking points that the Test brought forth.
India have opening issues to sort: The Indian openers, Prithvi Shaw and Mayank Agarwal, have been in an unstable form of late. Mayank was already struggling in the ODIs. Meanwhile, Shaw has been dismissed for single figures in both the innings. He has failed to score even 20 on four occasions in the past five innings. Would be interesting to see if either is given a chance in the second Test. Also, with Rohit likely to come in, Shubman Gill could be promoted as well.
India's bowling is top-notch: Keeping aside the second innings howler, India's bowling attack has been top-notch in both departments. The pacers have the tendency to provide the initial breakthroughs. Furthermore, Ashwin, who was the lone spinner in the side, has once again proved that with veteran experience comes excellent abilities, as his spell of 4/55 was highly commendable.
Forget twilight; batsmen need to master the early hours: The most challenging phase of the day-night Test happens to be the twilight period, as the batsmen complain of struggling to spot the ball correctly. However, it wasn't as troublesome in this Test. Instead, the batsmen struggled with the seam movement during the early hours of the match. Also, the pink ball seems to be having an extra seam movement, unlike the regular red ball, making it even more troublesome for the batsmen. Teams need to practice more with the pink ball to master this.
Pat Cummins too good to be played in Australia: As for the Australian pacers, all of them had a decent outing in this Test. However, it was Pat Cummins who nailed it in both the innings. Claiming seven wickets, it played a pivotal role in getting rid of the Indian middle-order, while he did give a tough time to the top-order as well. Coming off a decent outing in the Indian Premier League (IPL), it was evident that he would have been Australia's rime pacer in this series, as he is rightfully too good to be played Down Under.
Indians have Mohammed Shami headache: After a horror show with the bat, the Indians have another headache in the form of seamer Mohammed Shami, who injured his wrist while batting and did not bowl in the second innings. Provided he is ruled out, the Indians are set to lose out on an excellent seam option, while either of Navdeep Saini or Mohammed Siraj will have a grave task at hand.
Match summary: Electing to bat first, the Indians scored a total of 244, courtesy Kohli's 74. As for Australia, they were bowled out for just 191, thanks to Ashwin's 4/55. However, the second innings saw Indians collapsing at a paltry score for 36, on Day 3, with Josh Hazlewood (5/8) and Pat Cummins (4/21) wreaking havoc. In the end, it was a comfortable eight-wicket chase for the hosts, with Joe Burns staying unbeaten on 51.
Brief scores: India 244 & 36/9 (Myanak 9; Hazlewood 5/8, Cummins 4/21) lost to Australia 191 and 15/0 (Burns 51*; Ashwin 1/16) by eight wickets.
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Last Updated Dec 19, 2020, 3:12 PM IST