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Australia vs India: Ist Test: India beat home side by 31 runs

India beat Australia by 31 runs at Adelaide

Adelaide, December 10: When KL Rahul held on to a low chance at second slip to dismiss Josh Hazlewood off R Ashwin, India under Virat Kohli rewrote the history books on Monday (December 10). It was the first time India won an opening Test of a series in Australia - a nervy 31-run victory at the Adelaide Oval, venue of India's one of the greatest Test triumph back in 2003-04.

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Of course, the win came after some wait and edgy moments as Australian tailenders - Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins, Nathan Lyon and Hazlewood - offered spirited fight. Here's a lowdown on India's triumph at Adelaide.

1. Good beginning to the day

1. Good beginning to the day

Australia resumed the day at 104/4 and a victory appeared a matter of time. Ishant Sharma cemented that belief dismissing Travis Head, who had made a gritty fifty in the first innings as the Aussie left-hander failed to negotiate a snorter and offered a simple, looping catch to Ajinkya Rahane at gully. A little later Shaun Marsh, who made his first fifty for Australia in the 4th innings, a composed 60, fell to Jasprit Bumrah. The left-hander failed to ward off the temptation to flash outside the off-stump and gave a simple catch to Rishabh Pant, who equalled the world record of 11 catches for a wicketkeeper in a Test, behind the stumps. Australia went to lunch at 186 for 6 and those two wickets yanked the wires on the hosts' genuine hopes of a miracle.

2. Chirpy Pant and Rahane

2. Chirpy Pant and Rahane

The series began with the promise of teams not overstepping the line of control while sledging. Australian fast bowlers Starc, Cummins and Hazlewood have engaged with Indian fast bowlers at various junctions in this Test and this day was Indians' turn to give a shout back and be chirpy. Rahane was more about egging on his teammates and often heard in the stump microphone talking to Ashwin: "Bowl there macha." But Pant was more direct and often tried to unsettle Cummins and Starc and some lines went like: "Oh! Someone is not seeing the ball." Generally everyone liked the banter save for veteran names like Sunil Gavaskar who maintained that talking to opposition players was unnecessary.

3. Struggle against tailenders

3. Struggle against tailenders

The previous day, Indian tail failed to wag and had lost four wickets for four runs. But the Australian late-order batsmen showed more grit against a relentless attack and situation. The four batsmen together added just over 100 runs that nearly took Australia home, giving sweaty palms to the Indians. But from an Indian perspective, the struggle against tailenders, which was so obvious against England, the bowlers will soon have to find a way to dismiss them or it might return to haunt them later in the series. Ashwin, who bowled more than 50 overs, looked non-penetrative while pacers looked a bit jaded against the last quartet.

4. Way ahead before Perth Test

4. Way ahead before Perth Test

The next will start in four days time at Perth (December 14). The WACA pitch often assists the pacemen and the new ground and pitch is no exception. India will have to ensure that they should not find themselves at 19 for 3 or 41 for 4 often as every time a Cheteshwar Pujara show does not occur. It might be a fair reflection of that thought that some Indian players like KL Rahul hit the nets straight after the Adelaide win. Of course, India have taken 1-0 lead but plenty of work is still to be done in this series.

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    Story first published: Monday, December 10, 2018, 13:28 [IST]
    Other articles published on Dec 10, 2018
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