5 talking points from the first Test between Australia and India

The Indian team became the first side to win a Test match in South Africa, England and Australia when they defeated the Aussie unit by a margin of 31 runs in the first Test at Adelaide


Opting to bat first, the Indians scored 250 runs courtesy Cheteshwar Pujara’s 123, after which the Indian bowling unit did well to restrict the opposition to 235 runs. In their second innings, India were once again guided by Pujara, who struck a fluent 71, as they managed 307 runs on the board.

The target of 323 seemed tough for the Aussies at first after they lost 4 quick wickets but a stern resilience from the tail brought them nearer to the target. However, the Indians did well to control their nerves and edge ahead by 31 runs.

 

Here are the talking points from the game.

India’s struggled with the tail continued

It is a common story now that the Indian bowlers struggle against the tail. Their inability to dismiss the lower order players in South Africa and England led to their downfall and the match was going along a similar path at Adelaide too. The home side needed 219 runs to win with 6 wickets in hand on the last day – a task that is usually considered a tough one. However, the string of partnerships pushed India on the backfoot, with even the Aussie bowlers putting on a fine display with the bat.

While the top 6 players for Australia in the final innings made 133 runs, the bottom 4 managed 148 runs, which is an aspect that the side needs to improve.

 

The fine display of the Indian pacers

After bowling on par with the English pacers earlier this summer, a lot was expected of the Shamis, Ishants and the Bumrahs as they headed to Australia. With the home side having quicks like Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins, the battle between the seamers from both ends was expected to be a great battle.

However, by outperforming them, the Indians showed the talent and the skills that they possess – something that will be very pleasing to the Indian fans who have had to make do with a below-par seaming attack for all the years. Bowling at 145kmph consistently, especially in the last session on Day 4 and by varying their line and lengths, they troubled the Aussie top-order, which fell prey to their nagging bowling. Shami and Bumrah scalped 3 wickets each in the final innings, while Ishant, despite picking up just a wicket, was the pick of the lot.

The pace, bounce, swing helped them pick up 14 wickets in the match, more than the 11 wickets that the rivals picked up. With the next match scheduled to be at Perth – the quickest wicket in the world – the contest between the bowling units of the two teams will be an enthralling affair.

 

The track did not deteriorate as much

After Nathan Lyon scalped 6 wickets in the second innings, a lot was expected from the Indian off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin. He did pick up 2 of the 4 wickets to fall on Day 4, and the Indians would have hoped that the player could get them across the line of=n the final day. However, the track, surprisingly eased out, with an even bounce on offer. The balls did not turn as much and the swing was easily navigated as Australia piled on the runs on Day 5.

The tracks in Australia, have overall become flatter and have started helping the batters, which could prove to be challenging for the Indian team who have been keen on going ahead with 4 bowlers.

 

Nathan Lyon is the best tail-ender at the moment

Nathan Lyon can be considered as one of the world’s best tailender at the moment. Though the office has just scored 901 runs in 105 innings without a fifty or a hundred, he has faced 1906 balls, which shows that he has the potential to stay at the crease and make life miserable for the rival side. He picked up 9 wickets in the game and scored 62 runs, which a good display in the second innings in particular.

Coming in to bat with the score reading 187 for 7, the pressure was on Lyon to take Australia close to the target of 323. Just when it seemed that the task would be an improbable one, Lyon stood tall as the anchor scoring 38 runs and piling on 41 runs with Starc, 31 runs with Cummins and 32 with Hazlewood.

 

Rishabh Pant announces himself as a keeper

After the unfortunate injury to Wriddhiman Saha, India was desperately in need of a solid keeper who could impress with the bat as well. Pant was inducted into the Indian side against England and he had a horror debut, spilling catches left, right and centre. However, the Delhhite has managed to get himself together and displayed great skills against Australia, picking up 11 catches at Adelaide, which equals the world record that was set by Jack Russell in 1995 and AB de Villiers in 2013. He also broke Indian record of Saha, who had picked up 10 catches against South Africa. The cricketer is an exciting talent and showed his intent by smashing Nathan Lyon for three fours and a six in an over and then sledging Pat Cummins in the last innings.

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