Men in Blue register 31-run win to go 1-0 up in four-match series
Cheteshwar Pujara played an important role and helped India in registering a 31-run win in the first Test of the four-match series against Australia in Adelaide on Monday. The match started with the visitor’s captain winning the toss and opting to bat first. His decision, however, proved a costly one as India lost half of their side for just 86 runs.
But Pujara, who came after the loss of the first wicket, kept his composure and scored a brilliant century, which was his first Down Under and helped Virat Kohli-led unit in posting a respectable total of 250. Pujara scored 123 off 246 balls with the help of seven fours and two sixes. For Australia, pacer Josh Hazlewood was the pick of the bowler as he claimed figures of three for 52 in 20 overs.
In reply, Australia never got going and kept losing wickets at regular intervals and were eventually bowled out for just 235.
Left-handed middle-order batsman Travis Head finished the innings with the top score of 72 off 167 balls with the help of six fours. For India, pacer Jaspreet Bumrah and off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin claimed three wickets each.
In the second innings, the Men in Blue produced a much better effort with the bat and were bowled out for 307, setting Australia 323 to win the first Test. Pujara once again was the star of the show as he finished with the top score of 71 off 204 balls with the help of nine fours.
For Australia, off-spinner Nathan Lyon finished the innings as the most successful bowler with six wickets. While chasing 323, Australia put up a great fight but were bowled out for 291 on the stroke of tea on the fifth day.
Left-hander Shaun Marsh finished the innings with the top score of 60 off 166 balls with the help of five fours. For India, Bumrah, Ashwin and Mohammad Shami claimed three wickets each. For his outstanding performances in both innings, Pujara was named the player of the match.