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Australia recover after early blow in first Test

Published: Thursday, October 9, 2008, 12:33 [IST]
 
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BANGALORE:
Australia recovered from the first-over dismissal of Matthew Hayden to reach 75-1 by lunch on the opening day of the first Test against India here on Thursday.

Skipper Ricky Ponting, who won the toss and elected to take first strike on a good batting wicket, and Simon Katich repaired the damage by putting on 75 for the unbroken second wicket.

Ponting, playing his 200th Test innings, went to the break on 41 with five boundaries.

Left-handed Katich was unbeaten on 28.

The four-match series for the Border-Gavaskar Trophy began in dramatic fashion when Zaheer Khan had veteran Hayden caught behind with the third delivery of the match.

Pakistani umpire Asad Rauf took time to raise his finger as Hayden stood his ground, but television replays confirmed a faint edge before the ball carried to wicket-keeper Mahendra Dhoni.

Ponting, looking to make amends after averaging 12.27 in eight previous Tests on Indian soil, began on a positive note.

The Australian captain drove seamer Ishant Sharma to mid-off for a boundary and later pulled the same bowler to square-leg for another four.

India introduced spin in the 13th over in the form of off-spinner Harbhajan Singh, and skipper Anil Kumble himself came on with his leg-spin in the 18th, but Ponting and Katich were unmoved.

Australia left out off-spinner Jason Krejza from the 12 announced on Wednesday to give Victorian leg-spinner Cameron White his Test debut.

India went in with two seamers in Zaheer and Sharma and two spinners in Kumble and Harbhajan on a wicket that is expected to turn later in the match.

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