Welcome to the Second Test Match between India and Australia at Mohali.
India has won the toss and elected to bat. India won’t be availing the services of Captain Kumble. Keeper Dhoni taking the honors of captaining the test side in absence of Kumble.
The next best thing to watch out for is the Master Blaster is inching close to the record of highest number of test runs. He is 15 runs short of the magical figure. Will he reach the milestone is the main attraction of the game. Sit back and enjoy till we come back with the days review. Till then enjoy
Shams & Wags.
Attack right from the word go is the Australians way of playing. But that seems to be a passé now as they opted for a rather defensive mode. Having won the toss, the Aussies would have thought of scoring quick fire runs But not to be the case this time around as the third delivery of the over and Hayden tried playing the ball on the off side only finding himself caught in the gloves of Dhoni for a duck. Simon Katich was then joined by Rickey Ponting in the very first over. Ponting applied himself in front of the Indian bowlers and started accumulating runs in a rather defensive style. Interesting statistics is that 4 years ago while both the teams played in Bangalore, the score was identical at the end of session and for the loss of the same player Hayden. 75/1 at lunch.
It’s Festive season in India as everyone celebrating Dusshera . Crowd slowly melts up to the stadium and so does all Television viewers across country. Shams & wags prediction of Playing XI for both sides came in true. Only few changes in Aussies camp. Cameron White was handed his first Test cap – courtesy injured Bryce McGain.
Shane Watson filled the all-rounder’s role after the Andrew Symonds was left out of the squad for disciplinary reasons.
Even though they had a slow start, the Aussies managed to score pretty decently and Ponting’s and Katich’s 166 run partnership ensured the Oz remained in the game.
Hayden has a pecular habbit of sitting on the pitch an hour before days play. May be he is trying to bribe the pitch by doing so, but taht didnt help him this time around.
In our last article, we had heavily criticised Ponting for getting into the mind games and letting his mouth talk rather than his bat. But it was surely Ponting’s day and he really proved that the quality players let their bat do the talking rather than mouth.
Katich played a good supporting play as he rotated the strike which ensured that the runs kept ticking.Ponting celebrated his first century in India while completing his third run before thriving his bat like a warrior with a sword. It was Ponting’s 16th as a captain, he was previously tied with Steve Waugh and Allan Border on 15.
At 201/2. there was loud appeal from Kumble.All the replays suggest thatit as a catch and not a bump, but as there was not a referral system in this series, it as not referred to the third umpire.
But with tea looming, it was the rookie Ishant Sharma who made the breakthrough as he induced an edge from Katich on 66 and the ball falling safely yet again in the hands of Keeper Dhoni. Mike Hussey was lucky to escape early as one of his edge on Kumble’s bowling going past keeper Dhoni’s thumb. By 75th over of the day Indian were looking tired as Kumble turned to Sehwag’s part time spin to give some rest to regular bowlers. It made all easy for Ponting and Hussey.
With 226 on the board, Ponting tried to sweep Harbhajan, was struck low on the front pad and Umpire Asad Rauf raised his finger yet again making him Bhajji’s bunny.
3 overs before the close of the days play,Kumble took new ball and it worked for Indians on last ball of the day as Clarke was trapped in front for 11 by Zaheer.
So the opening wicket and the ending wicket were bagged by our very own ZAK.
Heres the Score Card:
Hello Readers, We know many of you might have followed 4 day match against Board President XI in Hyderabad. The match ended in draw but there were more smiles in Indian side and worries in Oz’s camp.
Had the selection been done on 2nd Oct’08 instead of 1st for the early two tests, the picture would look different. Only player who’ve been picked up in Test squad S.Badrinath failed in both innings. Rise and shine time for Virat Kohli & Rohit Sharma in first innings as they both hit 105 each to put BP XI in strong position. With the likes of Kumble and Bhajji as a spin attack very little chances are left for other spinners to get into probable for selection. Yet Piyush Chawla & Pragyan Ojha bowled well against Oz’s and shared 8 wickets between them to bundle out Aussies cheaply in first innings. Punter’s bad patch in Indian soil continued. Only brave innings was played by Mike Hussey who scored century and some batting braveness for Stuart Clarke in lower order. Second innings brings more smiles for BP XI as captain Yuvraj Singh made century while Jaffer missed the same with 7 runs.
Aussies really wouldn’t have expected the worst news in the form of there main attacking spinner Bryce McGain being ruled out of entire series due to shoulder injury. The other spinner Kreja who also came with dream of making Test debut alongside McGain now has real chance to be in playing eleven. Aussies have also called all-rounder Cameron White who has performed really well in domestic circuit for them to join the squad. His leg spin can be bit handy apart from giving strength to batting lower down the order.
With just 3 days to go for the first test in Bangalore (now Bangaluru) playing conditions look pretty much similar to what we had in Hyderabad during practice match.Looking at the weather conditions captain Kumble will certainly be playing with 2 seamers and 2 spinners with long batting line up we have.
Shams & Wags’s probable XI for the Test are-
India – Anil Kumble(Capt.),V.Sehwag, G.Gambhir, Rahul Dravid, Sachin Tendulkar,Sourav Ganguly,VVS Laxman, M S Dhoni (VC & wk),Harbhajan Singh,Zaheer Khan,Ishant Sharma,Munaf Patel (12th man).
Australia – Ricky Ponting (Capt.), M Hayden, Phil Jacques, S Katich, Michael Clarke, Mike Hussey, B Haddin, Brett Lee, Stuart Clarke, M Johnson, Kreja, Watson (12th man)
Article By Shams & Wags