2018-19 Domain Tests: 4th Test of Australia v India Day 1 Evening Session Review at the Sydney Cricket Ground


At last, Australia captured the dangerman when Josh Hazlewood dismissed Virat Kohli on 23.

Hazlewood pitched up short and angling in straight with pace and bounce before Kohli pulled it too early towards Tim Paine’s gloves.

Without using plenty of footwork, Kohli made a mistake when he took the eyes off the ball.

It’s the head position isn’t simple enough by placing it down and not still where Kohli’s not patient for the ball to come to him.

Plus he’s not fully presenting the open bat face so it can provide much power & force Paine to drop that catch which backfired.

India 3-180

Cheteshwar Pujara stayed on as Ajinkya Rahane joined him in the middle as India reached the 200 run mark.

It took a while for Australia to wipe off India’s fourth wicket loss when Mitchell Starc dismissed Ajinkya Rahane on 18.

Starc did very well when he pitched up short with a big bounce rapidly hesitated Rahane by jumping and let his bat ping towards Paine’s gloves.

Again, Starc attacked the ball very well to produce plenty of fire into his belly.

That’s how he’s able to scare off Rahane and make him play that outside edge.

Like Kohli, Rahane took the eyes off the ball by not letting it block with a straight bat or duck/leave it out.

If Rahane maintained his head still, then he would’ve at least survived for another lifeline in the middle.

India 4-228

Pujara later backed up his 3rd 100 in this series and 18th overall in his entire Test career.

That’s why Pujara’s named as “The Wall.”

He hangs in there and stays in for a long time.

How does it make sure that Pujara doesn’t lose his wicket?

Blocking 100s of good balls is an excellent foundation to start.

Image Caption: cricket.com.au

Then he kept the head still so he can get his placement right & score off open bat face shots.

Whether if it’s off the cross or straight bat, he dances around to rotate his shot selection and make it hard for the bowlers to get him out.

Hanuma Vihari went in and recaptured his form having backed Pujara up and scoring runs on the board.

Yes, Vihari may have problems against the short ball last week as an Opener.

But at No.6, Vihari played his natural game by watching the ball closely before whacking off shots that are simple to hit down the ground.

So he has no problems with the shot selection as Vihari’s able to make his placement click by presenting the open bat face.

That’s how he quickly got to the 30 run mark himself to keep his technique simple.

Stumps Day 1: India 4-303

India’s Take

Image Caption: cricket.com.au

India may have lost two wickets through the short ball play by whacking too early & taking eyes off the ball.

But at least, they still have “The Wall” of Pujara in the middle.

Pujara batted for six hours on 130* when he’s able to keep his natural game simple at all times.

He has a fantastic cricketing brain in blocking 100s of times through good balls as well as moving the feet both back or front to get the best out of his shot selection.

Plus credit to Hanuma Vihari for backing “The Wall” up and being relaxed and calm which allowed him to score the runs he’s after.

The use of the old ball helped Vihari wait for the ball as late as possible before he perfected his placement of an open bat face.

There’s no need for Vihari to hesitate or lose his balance by reaching out for the shot having scored 39* today.

So India leads the way as long as their two batsmen remain simple & not out, then they can go towards the 400-500 mark plus declare from there.

Australia’s Take

It’s a hard day for the home team on the field.

Yes, the fast bowling pair of Mitchell Starc & Josh Hazlewood picked up a wicket apiece through the short ball play.

But the rest of the time, the bowlers don’t attack or change the pace & length enough.

Even the change of tactics towards the spinners didn’t strip Pujara or any of the other top-order batsman today.

They need to rest up and then come back tomorrow to get that pace scare off Pujara or Vihari.

That way the more they attack up short or the stumps, the better the chances of them playing a loose shot.

Pitching good balls does see them hard to score off runs which is what Australia needs to do to wrap up the rest of the Indian batting card.

Otherwise, Australia will have a hard time batting & responding to the visitors’ 1st Innings total.


Day 1 of the 4th Test in the 2018-19 Domain Tests between Australia v India has done and dusted.

Make sure you come back to my blog for Day 2 of the 4th Test tomorrow for more Test Cricket content.

For now, if you enjoy our coverage of Test Cricket, you can support me by shopping your latest cricket gear via the link below from SportsDirect.

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