Border-Gavaskar Trophy: 4th Test, Day 1 - The Quick Flicks
Ferozshah Kotla or Headingley?
When Bhuvneshwar Kumar beat Ed Cowan’s outside edge with the new ball, VVS Laxman, in the commentary box, wondered where the match was being played – Delhi or Headingley. Some respite for the curator of the Delhi pitch, considering the history of the 22-yards at the Kotla.
Hughes’ aggressive start
Hughes had a forgettable series until the first innings of the Mohali Test. The second innings blitz at Mohali transformed Hughes added to his confidence. At Delhi, he started off positively, driving the ball magnificently. The cracks on the wicket were visible, but Hughes made batting look simple. Hughes was scoring better than run a ball, and looked set for scoring a big score. Until…
A vicious delivery that dented Phil Hughes’ confidence:
Phil Hughes batted positively for his 45, until he got a snorter from Ishant Sharma. The ball hit Hughes on the helmet. Two balls later, Hughes did not move his feet, and all of a sudden he looked circumspect. He did not cover the line of the ball, and tentatively defended it. The ball hit his inside edge onto the stumps.
Very few times in the history of the game have we seen an Indian rattle an Aussie with a bouncer.
A batting spike that saved the day for captain Watson:
When Pragyan Ojha went past Shane Watson’s outside edge in the 26th over, there was a sea of emotions. Ojha was ecstatic, assuming that he had claimed his 100th Test wicket. First-slip fielder Virat Kohli appealed for the catch, while Mahendra Singh Dhoni first appealed for the stumping, and then for the catch.
The television replays were unconvincing. “There was a smidgeon behind the line,” said Shane Warne. In the end, the stump camera suggested that Watson’s batting spike might have been behind the crease, and he was given the benefit of the doubt.
Carrom ball that ended Johnson’s vigil:
Ravichandran Ashwin’s carrom ball confounded Mitchell Johnson, when he failed to read the ball off Ashwin’s hand. Johnson shouldered arms, expecting the ball to turn. But Ashwin, the master of deception, had the last laugh, as the ball spun back and castled the Aussie. Dhoni was elated, and pointed towards Ashwin as if to suggest that their plan had worked.