Australia 337-9 v India: Kumble's high five helps India find punch in Boxing Day duel

The Australian opener Matthew Hayden scored his 28th Test century, while India's captain Anil Kumble took five wickets to leave the first Test evenly poised after the first day's play here in Melbourne yesterday.

Hayden, who shared a 135-run opening partnership with Phil Jaques, was dismissed for 124 as the home side reached stumps on 337 for 9 with Mitchell Johnson on 10 and Stuart Clark on 21.

Kumble finished with 5 for 84, while left-arm pace bowler Zaheer Khan grabbed three wickets including captain Ricky Ponting and Hayden.

Kumble would be pleased with his side's efforts of refusing to succumb to Australian pressure by capturing wickets at crucial times after breaking the opening stand.

Australia made a tentative start after winning the toss and choosing to bat on a pitch that had signs of grass and moisture in the outfield, before Hayden and Jaques guided them through to lunch at 111 for no wicket.

However, after Kumble managed to draw Jaques down the wicket by a topspinner that was neatly taken by wicketkeeper Mahendra Dhoni, who whipped the bails off to dismiss him for 66, the home side's momentum stalled.

Ponting was bowled by Zaheer for four with a delivery that seamed away to knock over off stump before Mike Hussey was trapped in front by Kumble off another delivery that failed to spin, for two, leaving the home side at 165 for 3. Hayden, who reached his century with a cover drive off RP Singh for his eighth boundary, consolidated the innings with Michael Clarke before they both fell in quick succession.

Clarke was caught by VVS Laxman at second slip for 20 chasing a full, wide delivery from Singh, before Hayden spooned a catch to Sourav Ganguly at mid-on shortly after. Andrew Symonds, who had ominously moved to 35 off 42 balls, was then caught by the substitute fielder Dinesh Karthik to give Kumble his third wicket.

The Indian captain then had Adam Gilchrist mistiming a sweep to be caught by Sachin Tendulkar for 23, then trapped Brett Lee in front for a duck to give him his 35th five-wicket Test haul.

Khan then had Brad Hogg caught in the slips for 17 with the first delivery with the new ball before Clark, who produced two classy cover drives for boundaries in the final over, and Johnson saw the home side through to stumps.

Kumble ranked his performance as superior to his 10 for 74 against Pakistan on a wearing wicket in Delhi in 1999.

"To be honest, it's probably the top of everything," said the 37-year-old. "To get it on the first day of the Boxing Day Test, the first Test of the series, against Australia, it is a very special one."

The captain, however, said praise must go to all of his bowlers, particularly off-spinner Harbhajan Singh, who conceded just 61 runs off his 20 overs. "He bowled well, we bowled well together," Kumble added. "He kept it tight at one end and I picked up the wickets at the other and I'm sure in the second innings he will be very effective. I am very happy with what happened today, and the way we performed after being on the back foot at lunch."

Hayden, meanwhile, predicted a steady deterioration in the wicket. "I think it's definitely going to be a wicket that will be very hard to score on over the next few days," he said. "There will be slow conditions and it will be challenging to score runs.

"You will see us really putting the pressure on in the field and really trying to restrict India, that's the way I see it going.

"I also think the match will go into the fifth day and the wicket will deteriorate and it will be very difficult to bat on during that last day."

  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Russell Brand's interview with Ed Miliband has got everyone talking about The Trews

Everyone is talking about The Trews

Russell Brand's 'true news' videos attract millions of viewers. But today's 'Milibrand' interview introduced his resolutely amateurish style to a whole new crowd
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before
'Queer saint' Peter Watson left his mark on British culture by bankrolling artworld giants

'Queer saint' who bankrolled artworld giants

British culture owes a huge debt to Peter Watson, says Michael Prodger
Pushkin Prizes: Unusual exchange programme aims to bring countries together through culture

Pushkin Prizes brings countries together

Ten Scottish schoolchildren and their Russian peers attended a creative writing workshop in the Highlands this week
14 best kids' hoodies

14 best kids' hoodies

Don't get caught out by that wind on the beach. Zip them up in a lightweight top to see them through summer to autumn
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The acceptable face of the Emirates

The acceptable face of the Emirates

Has Abu Dhabi found a way to blend petrodollars with principles, asks Robert Fisk