The India vs Australia series started in dramatic fashion at the Adelaide Oval on Thursday as Cheteshwar Pujara scored his first Test century on Australian soil. With Virat Kohli failing to deliver, Pujara ensured he anchored the Indian innings and propelled them to 250/9 at the end of day’s play. Looking back at the entire course of play on Day 1, paceman Mitchell Starc felt that Australia had India on the mat and shouldn’t have allowed the control to slip.
“I thought we bowled really well for four hours, probably pretty well for another hour and probably got it a bit wrong at the end there,” Starc told reporters after the first day’s action. “Cheteshwar Pujara batted a lot of time. He’s someone who likes to absorb pressure and bat a long time, and credit to him he scored a fantastic hundred today.
“I think if you asked us at the start of the day if we’d take losing the toss and India being 9 for 250 at stumps I think we’d bite your arm off.”
Asked about the wicket, which Pujara said was difficult to bat on, Starc commented: “You can’t judge a wicket until both teams have had a crack. One good day isn’t going to win a series. It’s going to go a long way to helping win a Test but it’s nothing to win a series.
“I think we’ve planned and prepared really well for this week and had a lot of vision to look at, and how India have played in the past.
“They did go quite hard (at the ball) but we bowled exceptionally well for the first four hours, especially when the ball got soft and stopped moving around, the scoreboard never got away from us,” Starc said about keeping the run-rate under control.”
Pat Cummins affected a brilliant run out to dismiss Pujara on the last ball of the day.
Talking about the run-out, Starc said: “It was a special moment for him, especially after a long day in the field. It was a good little effort from him.
“Usman Khawaja 3.0 isn’t it? He’s on fire,” Starc said.
“He’s made a huge effort over the last nine months I guess and it’s showing in his batting and now it’s showing in his fielding. A great catch and probably one he’ll keep bringing up now as well, so a great effort from him.
“It was a great catch and hopefully he’s going to have a great couple of days with the bat as well,” said the pacer.
(With IANS inputs)
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