Cheteshwar Pujara was the star for India with his 16th century in Tests as India finished day one of the Adelaide Test on 250/9. During the course of his knock, Pujara went past 5000 runs and boosted India after the top order failed. Opting to bat after winning the toss, India lost KL Rahul cheaply and Murali Vijay to Mitchell Starc. Virat Kohli fell to a brilliant catch from Usman Khawaja while Rohit Sharma threw away his wicket after scoring a confident 37. Rishabh Pant also fell cheaply but Pujara held firm, sharing a partnership of over 50 with Ravichandran Ashwin and having good support in Ishant Sharma. For the Australians, all four bowlers excelled and they will be hoping that the batting does the job on the second day. (SCORECARD)
RUN OUT! Perhaps, it was the only way he could be dismissed. However, it is also his most common mode of dismissal unfortunately. Pujara takes a quick single by nudging to midwicket but Pat Cummins reaches the ball, dives sensationally and scores a direct hit at the bowler's end to catch him short. Ends a sensational knock and that will be stumps. India are 250/9 and Australia will be very happy with this effort.
Four and a six. Pujara is batting in a proper Twenty20 mode here as he thwacks Starc to the deep midwicket fence and also upper-cuts him over deep backward point for his second six. That is rare. I think this is the first time Pujara has hit two sixes in an innings. Nope, he achieved it once against England in Vizag in 2016 when he hit two sixes
What a knock! Simply sublime, gutsy and gritty! Cheteshwar Pujara scores his 16th ton and his first in Australia. He gets there with a clip off Mitchell Starc. Take a bow, champion!
Starc finally gets it right as he gets the full ball to curl back in on middle and leg stump, Ishant looks to work it to the leg side and gets an inside edge on to the pad and it hits off stump. Can Pujara get to 100?
The second new ball is taken and Mitchell Starc traps Ishant Sharma. Umpire Nigel Llong raises the finger but on review, it is going over the stumps. Good call by Ishant.
It is time for the second new ball now. 40 minutes of play are remaining. This session could make or break India's push to 250-300. Pujara has batted brilliantly and he needs support from the tail
Uh oh! Pujara seems to be cramping and he is getting some treatment from the physio. Hope he recovers. By the way, this is now Pujara's highest score in Australia.
A DRS review against Ishant. Lyon gets the ball to spin down the leg side but there is no edge. Australia lose a review. Bad one taken by skipper Tim Paine.
WICKET! That is the vital wicket before the new ball and it is Pat Cummins who strikes. Full ball angled in on middle stump, it straightens and Ashwin edges it to second slip. Can't do much on that. That is a top delivery and a stubborn stand is broken. Ravichandran Ashwin c Harris b Cummins 25 (76).
The partnership between Ashwin and Pujara has crossed 50. This is gold dust and the Saurashtra batsman is nearing a double century, number of bals that is.
The partnership is nearing fifty. Australia would be hoping that they get one more wicket before the second new ball, which is 12 overs away.
Ashwin and Pujara are building a solid partnership and the Saurashtra batsman is nearing a special milestone.
Pujara gets the outside edge but this time, Usman Khawaja's leap cannot help him get there and the batsman gets a boundary. Slight lapse in concentration there.
Starc and Lyon are desperately trying to break this stand but Pujara and Ashwin are solid in defence. The scoring rate might not be great, but this is Test cricket. It is Test of application.
20th fifty for Cheteshwar Pujara. What a mighty fine effort from the Saurashtra batsman. It has been a typically dour, gutsy knock from the right-hander. India need him to carry on.
Pujara nears fifty with a delightful cut shot. Anything short outside off and he has punished the bowlers today. Hazlewood makes the mistake of erring in line and length and the Indian batsman nears his fifty.
The Pujara-Ashwin combo is the last recognised pair for India. Bhuvneshwar can bat a bit but one feels, with this situation, Hanuma Vihari was a safer bet
WICKET! Another promising stand is cut short by Nathan Lyon. Pant falls! This delivery spins away and kicks up a bit from the deck, Pant has a feel for it and the edge is taken. Rishabh Pant c Paine b Lyon 25 (38).
Pant's current batting has a touch of Pujara now. Maybe, he had a word with the youngster and he is now playing with bit more maturity.
The partnership is moving on steadily. Pujara has gotten his eye in while Rishabh Pant is now starting to rotate the strike more consistently.
After some anxious shots, Pant seemed to have settled down and is playing with more maturity.
There is some banter going on between Rishabh Pant and Mitchell Starc. It is not sledging though, Starc has a wry smile as Pant plays and misses. However, in the next over, Starc floats a full ball on the pads and the batsman effortlessly flicks it to the deep square leg fence. Next ball, he gets an outisde edge that flies past the gap at gully for a boundary to third man.
SIX and OUT! Oh, Rohit Sharma, what a brain fade! This was just not on. He had slogged a six over deep backward square leg where Marcus Harris took the catch but the momentum took him over the ropes. Next ball, Rohit attempts a similar shot but gets beaten in the flight and holes out.
Pujara now gets bitten by the Rohit aggression bug. Short ball from Starc and Pujara upper-cuts it over the slips for a boundary to third man.
WOW! Sublime timing from Rohit Sharma. Full ball and in the slot outside off, Rohit presents the full face of the bat and effortlessly lofts it over widish long off for a big six. We saw the best catch today, we might have seen the best shot of the day if not the match.
Pujara's strike-rate is 15 at the moment. It was this kind of dour batting that helped India win the Johannesburg Test.
This is a far better start by Pujara and Rohit in this session. Cummins and Hazlewood are maintaining tight lines and lengths but both batsmen are hanging in there.
Great start after the lunch break for India. Rohit Sharma latches on to a full ball from Cummins and caresses the drive to the deep extra cover fence.
That will be lunch on day 1 of the Adelaide Test. Advantage Australia. The likes of Cummins, Hazlewood and Starc have all bowled brilliantly. For India, they will rue the bad shot-selection that led to their downfall. Lot hinges on Cheteshwar Pujara and Rohit Sharma.
Rohit shows why he has been picked in the squad. Cummins drags the delivery short and the batsman pulls it to the deep midwicket fence for a flat six. That should give them some confidence.
Starc and Cummins are operating now and the left-handed Starc is operating close to 91 mph. This is a tricky couple of overs for India before the lunch break.
Rohit gets going with a driven boundary through deep extra cover off Nathan Lyon. Australia are gunning for one more wicket before the lunch break.
Hazlewood and Lyon are building the pressure. Rohit Sharma was picked because he can play the pull shot and counter the short ball well. However, on this deck, one feels Australia might not bowl all that short and the full length is the key.
WICKET! Another one falls for the trap. Full ball from Hazlewood and in the zone outside off, Rahane reaches out for it and the edge is taken at second slip by Peter Handscomb. India sink further. Ajinkya Rahane c Handscomb b Hazlewood 13 (31).
Pujara and Rahane have ensured no further alarms in the session. However, Australia continue to apply the pressure. Lyon has bounced back while Cummins is maintaining tight lines and lengths.
SIX! Statement of intent from Ajinka Rahane. He dances down the track to Nathan Lyon and launches him into the stands at long on. That is one way of releasing the pressure.
CATCH DROPPED! Nathan Lyon into the attack and he almost gets a wicket. Ajinkya Rahane dances down the track and the ball kicks up from the deck, Rahane stabs at it and the edge flies past Marcus Harris and forward short leg. Would have been a blinder had that catch being taken. Australia maintain the pressure.
Beauty from Hazlewood. Pujara breaks the shackles by going on the backfoot and steering a short ball outside off to the square third man fence. However, the bowler gets the fullish length ball to nip back in off the seam and it beats Pujara's inside edge.
WICKET! WHAT A CATCH! Simply sensational. Pat Cummins strikes in his first over. Full ball and once again bouncing a bit more in the channel outside off, Kohli chases after it and the edge flies to Usman Khawaja at gully, the ball is almost past him but Khawaja leaps to his left and takes a stunning one-handed catch. A rare failure for Kohli in Adelaide and India are in trouble. Virat Kohli c Khawaja b Cummins 3 (16.)
Kohli and Pujara are steadfast in their defence as Starc and Hazlewood extract plenty of bounce from the Adelaide deck. Pat Cummins is into the attack.
Virat Kohli gets off the mark with a nudge to the leg side off Josh Hazlewood. However, this is time for the real battle. Mitchell Starc vs Virat Kohli. Bring it on!
WICKET! Loose stroke and Vijay pays the price. Starc stays over the wicket and angles a full ball outside off, it holds its line and Vijay is lured into the drive, the edge is taken by Paine. Murali Vijay c Paine b Starc 11 (22).
Vijay strikes the first boundary of the series. Full ball bowled from wide of the crease from Hazlewood, it cuts away outside off, Vijay reaches out for it and steers it uppishly but safely over backward point. Risky but sometimes it pays off.
Hazlewood has settled into a nice rhythm and metronomy already. He is getting good bounce and the line is absolutely immaculate. He troubles Vijay with some extra bounce as well. This first hour is very important for the Indian cricket team.
Mitchell Starc is struggling to get his radar right but the bounce on offer on this first day Adelaide wicket is good. Cheteshwar Pujara and Murali Vijay get going with some streaky strokes.
WICKET! Brilliant stuff from Hazlewood and he deserves the wicket. Full ball in the channel outside off and it swings away late, Rahul is lured into the flashy drive and Aaron Finch at third slip takes the catch. KL Rahul c Finch b Hazlewood 2 (8).
Good first over from Starc. A bit of swing through the air but the bounce is true. Rahul get going with a clip through midwicket and that should ease his nerves. Let us see how Murali Vijay copes up against Josh Hazlewood.
Right, we are all set to begin. Three slips, gully and short leg in place as Mitchell Starc runs in. KL Rahul is on strike.
Here are the playing XIs of both sides
India: Murali Vijay, Lokesh Rahul, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli(c), Ajinkya Rahane, Rohit Sharma, Rishabh Pant(w), Ravichandran Ashwin, Jasprit Bumrah, Ishant Sharma, Mohammed Shami
Australia: Marcus Harris, Aaron Finch, Usman Khawaja, Shaun Marsh, Peter Handscomb, Travis Head, Tim Paine(w/c), Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood, Nathan Lyon
The reasoning for Virat Kohli to include Rohit Sharma is that he can play the pull shot and tackle the short ball well. Actually, Rohit has a great record in Australia but not in the Tests.
India have opted to bat. Big toss won and this will give them the advantage. Rohit Sharma included in the XI and thus, Hanuma Vihari misses out.
There is an even covering of grass on the wicket but all indications are it will once again be the Adelaide belter of the past. Remember, in the Pink Ball Test, there was plenty of movement off the wicket.
Marcus Harris has become the 456th player to represent Australia in Tests. He will open the batting. Remember, he has been enjoying a good run in the Sheffield Shield but against this bowling line-up, it will be a different game altogether
A warm welcome to the first Test between India and Australia in Adelaide. It is that time of the year again. Alarm clocks at 5 AM, seeing the magnificence of the Australian grounds and getting a glimpse of action which will be thrilling to say the least