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Report card from the first Australia-India Test

Sapan Shikhar
CONTRIBUTOR
Feature
11 Dec 2018, 09:31 IST

Australia v India - 1st Test: Day 4
Australia v India - 1st Test: Day 4

One of the most awaited tours of the year began with a close encounter in the T20I series between the 2 teams, which eventually ended in a final scoreline of 1-1. But now comes the longest format of the game. After the disappointments in SA and England earlier this year, the significance of this Test series just went to another level

Living up to the expectations of the fans, the first Test between India and Australia saw a true example of how 5-day cricket should be played. Although Australia displayed a determined show, India being the better side emerged victorious by 31 runs.

After having a close look at the first Test, a few players have been rated and analyzed based on their performances:-

CHETESHWAR PUJARA: 9.5/10

Mr. Dependable, whatever be the name or batting conditions, he will prove to be the perfect player for the longest format of the game. Through his innings of 123 and 71 runs, he showed the true meaning of patience and temperament. His rating of 9.5 is not just because of the fact that he scored the given amount of runs, but he did the same by playing 200+ balls in each innings and made the opposition bowlers work hard to get his wicket. He would play a pivotal role in the upcoming 3 Tests.

RAVICHANDRAN ASHWIN: 7/10

Whenever India dons the white jersey, Ashwin jumps up to play the role of that genuine bowling all-rounder. Got 3 crucial wickets in the 1st innings by his accurate bowling and also scored 25 runs in that 62 run partnership with Pujara for the 7th wicket

On day 4 and 5, Ashwin was not able to make optimum use of the rough patches as compared to his counterpart Nathan Lyon, due to which he got a rating of 7 which could have been a possible 8 if based on just the first innings.

VIRAT KOHLI: 5/10

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If we talk about our skipper Kohli, he had a memorable tour in England but this tour did not start as per the expectations of Indian fans. In the first innings, we saw him repeating his old mistake of fishing outside off stump to throw his wicket.

In the second innings, we witnessed a rather slow but a promising Kohli who did not give many chances to the bowlers. Unfortunately, the consistency of Lyon got him back to the pavilion. One positive point after his failure was that Indian batting is not reliant on Kohli.

KL RAHUL: 4/10

A player with the talent that barely comes out. His struggle was certainly visible throughout this match as well. He has got many opportunities and has failed to encash them. He disappointed in 2 Tests in SA and also in 9 out of 10 innings in England. Again repeating the same old story, he was uncertain in his approach, whether to play defensive or his natural game. Will the selectors carry on digging in Rahul to extract the so-called “talent” or will he finally be dropped?

Australia v India - 1st Test: Day 5

NATHAN LYON: 9/10

In the pace-heavy bowling line up of Australia, Lyon plays the role of silent assassin. He is someone who won’t try too much, does not have a bag full of variations but relies on the conditions and his consistency.

He might not have got too many wickets in the first innings but his 6 wicket haul in the 2nd innings brought Australia back into the game. Not to forget his nice little cameo with the bat in first innings and a responsible knock in the 2nd innings that kept Australian hopes alive. All eyes would be on him in the Australian comeback ahead in the series

MARCUS HARRIS: 6/10

The debutant had a great opportunity to prove himself in the absence of Warner and Bancroft that too in a series as big as India vs Australia. He looked promising from the shots that he played to make 26 runs in both the innings. He did get starts but failed to convert them into a big score, which is what he would learn with experience. Looks like an interesting player and cricket critics will have eyes on him throughout the series.

USMAN KHAWAJA: 3.5/10

Khawaja came up with a big reputation after that wonderful knock to draw the Test in Dubai against Pakistan, but his performance in this test was completely in contrast to that reputation. Being the senior player, Aussies relied on him to lead the inexperienced batting line up.

In the first innings, he tried to stay at the crease and build a steady partnership but got dismissed on 28 off a beauty bowled by Ashwin. Whereas in the 2nd innings when runs were dried by the accurate Indian bowlers, he played a rash shot to get out which was not required at that stage.

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