India reached 215-2 on the back of debutant Mayank Agarwal’s 76 and the steady association of Pujara-Kohli. 


Prior to the Boxing Day Test at the MCG, India, and Australia both won one Test match each. India won the toss and elected to bat. Having changed the opening pair, they gave Mayank Agarwal the opening slot along with Hanuma Vihari. Rohit Sharma and Ravindra Jadeja also returned to the team while Australia too have made one change in the playing XI, Mitch Marsh came in for Peter Handscomb.

 

Pat Cummins was the successful bowler on the very first day. He picked up Hanuma Vihari and handed over the first breakthrough to his team. It was the 113th ball of the opening session when Vihari tried to hit an outside off stump short ball but ended up giving an easy catch to the third slip to Finch. While he struggled to get off the mark and took 25 deliveries, Agarwal seemed confident on his shots. They both added 40 runs in the opening stand.

Agarwal slowly built his innings. His first 17 runs came through running. The first boundary of the day came from his bat only. He hit an outside off stump ball that just flew over Mitchell Marsh at gully in the 7th over. He too was not totally comfortable with Cummin’s bowling but was confident in his scoring abilities. Mithcell Starc and Josh Hazlewood too were successful in giving 12 maiden overs. Their short-ball strategy kept India batters in struggle and before lunch, India walked off at 57/1.

After lunch, a couple of boundaries off Nathan Lyon took Agarwal to his maiden Test half-century. The first six of the innings hit by him as well. He hit Lyon over long on for 6 runs. Before he could move further, his innings came to an end after getting dismissed by a short ball from Cummins down the leg side. Tim Paine took a brilliant catch which was eventually the last ball before tea.

His well-made 76 were greatly supported by Pujara on a slow surface which was showing the signs of up and down bounce. They both added 83 runs for the second wicket. Later to the tea, captain Virat Kohli joined Pujara at the crease. He looked confident and found the gap as well while Pujara stood strong at the other end. His 200-ball 68 on the first day comprised of six boundaries.

It was Mitchell Starc who made the situation of Kohli’s dismissal with the second new ball but was unfortunate to see Kohli being dropped on 47. The delivery went straight through and Kohli ended up driving for the in-swinger which eventually got the outside toe-end of his bat, Paine dived to his right, caught that but couldn’t hold. And, in the very next ball, India got a boundary. Kohli’s 107-ball 47* got stable support from Pujara. Their unbeaten 92-run stand helped India to cross 200 marks on the first day of the third test.

Brief Scores: India 215/2 (Mayank Agarwal 76, Cheteshwar Pujara 68*; Virat Kohli 47*, Pat Cummins 2/40) vs Australia

 

1 COMMENT

  1. […] Mayank Agarwal made his Test debut against Australia on 26 December 2018. Agarwal slowly built his innings where the first boundary of the day came from his bat only. The first six of the innings hit by him as well. After lunch, a couple of boundaries off Nathan Lyon took Agarwal to his maiden Test half-century. He scored 76 runs in the first innings at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG). This was the highest score by an Indian on a Test debut in Australia, surpassing the record of 51 runs by Dattu Phadkar, at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) in 1947. […]

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