Australia take charge against India in second Test
Tuesday 03 January 2012
An unbeaten 79-run stand between Michael Clarke and Ricky Ponting left Australia in a strong position after their in-form pace attack skittled India for 191 on a dramatic opening day at the SCG.
Having ripped through India's batting line-up in just over two sessions, James Pattinson, Ben Hilfenhaus and Peter Siddle sharing all 10 wickets between them, the hosts also found the going tough on a greenish wicket as Zaheer Khan produced a destructive opening spell.
The left-armer removed David Warner (eight), Shaun Marsh (0) and Ed Cowan (16) to reduce Australia to a precarious 37 for three before Ponting (44 not out) and Clarke (47no) steered the hosts to 116 for three at stumps, trailing by 75 runs.
Warner was first to depart when he edged to VVS Laxman at second slip.
Laxman fumbled the regulation chance but Sachin Tendulkar snaffled the rebound to send the dangerous left-hander trudging back to the pavilion.
Marsh fell to an almost identical delivery from Khan at the start of the paceman's next over, but this time Laxman made no mistake to send the batsman packing for a golden duck.
Cowan was Khan's next victim when he was trapped in front of his stumps, leaving Australia in some trouble with less than 10 overs gone.
However, current captain Clarke joined former skipper Ponting at the crease and the experienced duo helped put their side in the ascendancy with a quick-scoring counter-attack.
Earlier, Pattinson (four for 43), Ben Hilfenhaus (three for 51) and Peter Siddle (three for 55) picked up where they left off in Melbourne with another world-class display of pace bowling.
India skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni top scored for the tourists with an unbeaten 57 after winning the toss and electing to bat, while Tendulkar was the only other batsman to look comfortable against Australia's in-form pace trio.
The Little Master looked in ominous touch but will have to wait another day for his 100th international century after dragging a wide ball from Pattinson onto his stumps for 41 in the middle session.
Dhoni and Ravi Ashwin put on a valuable 54 runs for the seventh wicket before Hilfenhaus removed Ashwin (20) and Khan (nought) with the final two deliveries of the session to reduced India to 178 for eight at tea.
Dhoni came out swinging at the resumption, reaching his maiden half-century on Australian soil with a blistering cover drive off Siddle before running out of partners.
Sharma departed for a duck when he fended a short ball from Hilfenhaus straight to Cowan at short leg before Umesh Yadav became Siddle's 100th Test victim when he edged behind to Brad Haddin.
Needing a victory to square the series, the tourists made a dismal start as Gautam Gambhir (nought), Rahul Dravid (five), Virender Sehwag (30) and VVS Laxman (two) all fell before lunch.
Pattinson was the chief destroyer in the opening session claiming three wickets.
Fifa corruption: Could Fifa's president Sepp Blatter face arrest as part of the FBI investigation into alleged corruption?
Paul Scholes column: With Premier League over for another year, here are my end of season awards
Bath vs Saracens live: Saracens win Premiership final with 28-16 victory thanks to tries from Owen Farrell, Jamie George and Chris Wyles
Fifa corruption live: Sepp Blatter tries to shift attention to Uefa and says he expects more from US investigators
Young Preston fan who had Jermaine Beckford's shirt stolen from him at Wembley presented with replacement signed by the play-off hero
- 1 Engineer pictured fixing plane's engine with 'duct tape' by concerned EasyJet passenger
- 2 Two-year-old says goodbye to bin man best friend
- 3 Saudi Arabia mosque bombing: Two volunteer security guards hailed as heroes for stopping Isis suicide bomber reaching worshippers
- 4 There is something wrong but very right about this Bible illustration
- 5 Remove smartphones from the hands of under-18s and maybe they will grow up to be less dumb
EU referendum: David Cameron's rules are a 'democratic disgrace', says French-born Scottish politician set to be denied a vote
Migrants in Kos: Photos show real tragedy after Brits abroad complain of 'awkward' holidays
British tourists complain that impoverished boat migrants are making holidays 'awkward' in Kos
A nation of inequality: How the UK is failing to feed its most vulnerable people
Australian man punched in the face for defending Muslim women from abuse on train
EU referendum: David Cameron to deny EU migrants and under-18s the chance to vote