The Australia vs India (AUS vs IND) first Test was played at the iconic Adelaide Stadium and stood out to be a significant one. It was the first Day and Night Test between these two nations and India’s first-ever pink-ball Test on Australian soil. The hosts emerged victorious by eight wickets in a Test which barely lasted three days.
Was it total domination by the Aussies? Not quite! On the contrary, it was a session which made sure that the hosts took a 1-0 lead going into the boxing day Test match at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG). Here are the five major talking points from the AUS vs IND First Test of the Border-Gavaskar trophy.
INDIA RECORD LOWEST EVER TEST TOTAL
The game was well-poised for the visitors to clinch in their favour when they began Day three with a lead of 62 runs on the board and just one wicket down. What followed in the next hour or so was unimaginable. For Indian cricket’s sake, India weren’t bundled out for the lowest ever total in Test cricket but couldn’t manage to go past the 42-run mark and 36 all-out became India’s lowest ever Test total. Captain Kohli wanted to depart from the tour on a high, laying the foundation for the team to go on to win yet another series Down Under but he now leaves behind a team which has more unanswered questions than when the tour began.
ASHWIN IS THE REAL DEAL
Well, we called it before the Test series. R Ashwin is at top of the game and will be the real deal in this Australian summer. He needs to make sure that he keeps his fitness standards right up there and is available to play all four Test matches. He managed to pick up four wickets in the first innings and cause all sorts of problems for the Australian batsmen. He described it as if he was making his debut again in Test cricket, as it surely has been that long.
30 MINUTES TO FORGET FOR RAHANE
Ajinkya Rahane has an integral role to play in this particular tour for India. He’s supposed to be the stand-in captain for Team India in Virat Kohli’s absence and supposed to lead from the front. It was important that he started the tour on a promising note with the bat. He came into the first innings when India was at 100/3 with captain Kohli at the other end. Virat looked in the zone and wanted to make it count on his last Test for the calendar year. Captain and the vice captain forged a cool and calm partnership of 88 before a moment of horror. Rahane called Kohli for a run and left his mate stranded in the middle of the pitch. It was only the second time that Kohli was run out in his Test match career and the timing of it couldn’t have been worse. Rahane was visibly distraught and couldn’t recover from that setback and gave his wicket away in just the first over of the second new ball.
TEMPORARY CAPTAIN WHO?
A lot was made back in 2018 when Tim Paine was appointed as the captain of the Australian Test team following the ‘Sandpaper Gate’ in South Africa. The Indian team coined the term ‘Temporary Captain’ for Tim Paine in their previous tour of Australia. The temporary captain made sure that he showed his real class in the first AUS vs IND Test of this tour. He came into the middle with his team in a slight spot of bother at 79/5. He scored the only half century of the innings and helped his team reduce the deficit to just 53. He also earned a well deserved man of the match for his stupendous innings of 73*.
TOP-ORDER WOES FOR INDIA
The opening spot for both the teams coming into this match was a real talking point. India went with the exuberant Prithvi Shaw for the opening spot along with the regular opener Mayank Agarwal for the first Test. Australia went to an untried pairing of Joe Burns and Matthew Wade. While many thought that the Australian openers would struggle, it is safe to say that the Indian openers are under much more scrutiny than the Australians. The manner in which Prithvi Shaw got bowled through the gate on both occasions is a huge concern for the management and a big call needs to be made regarding his spot. Dropping him just after a single match would surely be a hard call to make.
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