PREVIEW: Australia v. India, Melbourne, Boxing Day Test

Heartbreak in Adelaide. A morale-sapping loss in Brisbane. Each game lost from a great position.

Two down. Two to go.

Rumours of a spat between Shikhar and Virat.

Bad food, bad umpires, bad nets.

In the mean time, here’s our XI for the all important Boxing Day test match Read More …

India at the Gabba: Oops, we did it again!

Moments which changed the course of the match:

Number one Day 2 – After a fantastic 144 from Murali Vijay on Day 1, Indian fans are pretty pleased at 311 for 4. Rahane and Rohit are at the crease with Dhoni and Ashwin still to come. The Aussie bowlers are still recovering from their workload on Day 1 and it is the perfect time to bat Australia out of the game by getting close to 500. All India has to do is see off the first hour.

That doesn’t happen.

Rahane gets a beauty. Rohit falls to a rubbish shot. We fold rather tamely for 408 by lunch.

Number twoDay 3 – Having reduced Australia to 247 for 6 in the first hour, Indian fans are pretty pleased again. India is bowling well and Haddin has just been bounced out by Aaron. We are looking at a lead of at least 100 runs. Read More …

The Prince Holds Court: Brisbane Love, 2003

First test match of the series.  The ball is seaming around at the Gabba. It’s a cloudy day.

Tendulkar has just been taken out by a Bucknor special.

The scoreboard reads 3/62. The Prince of Calcutta walks in.

He slashes past point. He swivel pulls. He caresses silken drives through the covers.

Runs a quick two for his hundred. Punches the air. Twice. Even hardened Aussies, who talk of targeting touring captains, applaud in the background.

Dada has the Aussies in his sights.

India is in Australia to compete.

144* – what a glorious start to the series!

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Full innings here –

Australia v. India, 2nd Test Match, The Gabba: Preview

Time for the second test!

(We’ve barely had time to catch our breath after the frantic finish in Adelaide but the tests are flying thick and fast – keep them coming!)

Australia has already come out and named their playing XI. Quite a few changes – from Steve Smith being named captain to the inclusion of Shaun Marsh and Mitchell Starc and a debut for Josh Hazlewood. Harris and Siddle are the guys missing out – pretty surprising as they have been the mainstay of Australia’s test squad for a while but perhaps Australia is looking to the future.

Australia will miss the presence of Clarke but on a seaming and quick wicket at the Gabba they seem to have their strategy set, going for the raw pace of Starc.

As we did for the first test, we are going ahead to name the India’s playing XI that we feel is best suited for this game. Read More …