India vs Australia | Twitter Enthralled By Back-And-Forth Opening Day at Perth

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For all the talks about the green deck welcoming the two sides, the century-stand between the Australian openers Aaron Finch and Marcus Harris ambushed all talks of the wicket potentially being a bowlers paradise, though the deck did show signs of quickening up as the day progressed. India came back well with wickets to keep the hosts to 277 for 6 the close of play to share the honors on the opening day of the second Test at Perth on Friday (December 14).

Earlier, the hosts elected to bat first but all the attention was on India’s playing XI which had four pacers. Virat Kohli picked Umesh Yadav and Hanuma Vihari to replace Rohit Sharma and Ravichandran Ashwin which meant they were going in without a specialist spinner for only the fourth time in their Test history.

The start was a dampener for India as the bowlers failed to exercise any control with the new ball and Australia got a really solid start with both openers scoring a half-century each.

It was Jasprit Bumrah who struck the first blow for India when he had Aaron Finch out lbw just after he brought up his fifty. and bowled a hostile spell to Usman Khawaja, which led to Umesh Yadav reaping the rewards of it with his wicket.

The part-time off-spinner Hanuma Vihari then struck gold to get rid of Harris with one that bounced more on the southpaw.

Virat Kohli, who was dismissed by a stunner from Khawaja in the first Test, plucked one out of thin air to get rid of Peter Handscomb.

While the skipper set the standard high for catches, wicketkeeper Rishabh Pant dropped a simple one of Shaun Marsh.

The dropped catch didn’t cost India much as Vihari got his man eventually when he had Marsh caught sharply by Ajinkya Rahane at first slip.

His partner Travis Head caught up with him in the dressing room, looking to attack the second new ball, much to the ire of the Australians.

Bumrah wasn’t done for the day though as he bowled a jaffa to Tim Paine to have all gasping for breath. The Australian skipper though will hope his bowlers can do the same to Indian batsmen as the pitch quickens more tomorrow.

First Published: December 14, 2018, 4:04 PM IST