Australia have silenced Virat Kolhi and every member of India’s star-studded top order bar Cheteshwar Pujara, who fought back fastidiously with an impressive century on day one of the first Test at Adelaide Oval.
Thursday’s play finished with Pujara being run out for 123 by a superb direct hit from Pat Cummins, who had one stump to aim at after toiling for 19 overs as temperatures hit 38 degrees.
India will resume at 9-250, having crashed to to 3-19 then 6-127 before Pujara rallied with help from the tail.
Tim Paine, who lost the toss, will lament the way his side failed to keep their foot on the tourists’ throat.
But after eight months of soul-searching and scathing criticism, there was lot for disillusioned fans and Paine to like as his side finally started their first home Test since the Cape Town cheating scandal and first match on free-to-air TV this season.
Usman Khawaja, stationed at gully and playing two days after his brother was arrested, led the way as Australia dominated the opening hour.
Khawaja helped remove Kohli for three, flinging himself to the left to complete a dramatic dismissal after Josh Hazlewood and Mitchell Starc both picked up a wicket in their opening spell.
Kohli, Ajinkya Rahane, KL Rahul and Murali Vijay were all out edging in the morning session to Australia’s fast bowlers, who bent their backs in sapping heat to extract rearing bounce and generate good pace.
“They are pretty poor shots, really, from top-order international players,” Ricky Ponting said in commentary for the Seven Network.
Rohit Sharma’s post-lunch dismissal to Nathan Lyon on 37 was the low point of India’s ill-disciplined innings, while Lyon also ended an entertaining cameo from Rishabh Pant.
Pujara halted the home side’s momentum with his first century in Australia, soaking up 246 balls.
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