Team India lock horns with Australia in the first Test of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy at Vidarbha Cricket Stadium in Nagpur. After winning the toss, the visitors decided to bat first on the spin-friendly track. However, in the first session, visitors lost both openers cheaply against the pace battery of the home team.
Mohammed Shami and Mohammed Siraj took one wicket each and dismissed both Usman Khawaja and David Warner. Smith then joined hands with Labuschagne and led the team's recovery. Things got heated up, later, when ace spinner Ravichandran Ashwin sledged the world’s no.1 Test batter Marnus Labuschange.
During the 26th over of the Australian innings, Ashwin, who was bowling his third over to Steven Smith and Marnus Labuschange, tried to threaten Labuschange with the spin. Ashwin bowled the sixth ball of the over, which Labuschange failed to read and got hit on the pads. Ashwin then gestured with his hands indicating the spin on the ball, while Labuschagne obeyed him by nodding his head.
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India put Australia under pressure
Talking about the game, visitors kept losing wickets at regular intervals. At the end of the second session, Australia had lost 8 wickets for just 174 for 8 in 60 overs. Marnus Labuschange scored 49 runs off 123 balls before getting stumped by KS Bharat.
He along with Steven Smith stitched a partnership of 82 runs for the third wicket. Smith also scored 37 runs off 107 balls before getting out by Ravindra Jadeja. In another partnership, wicketkeeper-batter Alex Carry and Peter Handscomb added 53 runs for the 6th wicket until Ashwin broke the dangerous partnership.
Ravindra Jadeja proved to be the go-to bowler for Captain Rohit Sharma. Jadeja, who is making a comeback after an injury, took four wickets in 20 overs giving away 45 runs. Marnus Labuschnage, Steven Smith, Matt Renshaw and debutant Todd Murphy were his wickets. Ace spinner Ravichandran Ashwin took two wickets, while Shami and Siraj took one wicket each.
India will be looking to bundle up visitors as soon as possible to take some advantage in the second innings before the wicket tears apart. Rohit and co. will try to win this series to qualify for the Test Championship on its own.