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Oz take foot off the pedal against Windies

Published: Friday, November 27, 2009, 10:20 [IST]
 
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Oz in front but fail to take  advantage

Brisbane: Australia took their foot off West Indies' throat in the first Test at the Gabba here on Thursday, failing to ram home an advantage.

After winning the toss and dominating with the bat to be 2-200, Ricky Ponting's outfit still took first-day honours by going to stumps at 5-322 with Marcus North 42 not out and Brad Haddin nine not out.

Scorecard

"I think it was good to get to 60-odd but probably all of us are a little bit disappointed we couldn't go on and one of us get a big hundred," Fox Sports quoted middle order batsman Michael Hussey, as saying.

But on the whole the team's in a pretty good position. If Brad (Haddin) and Marcus (North) kick on tomorrow and add another 150 or even 200, we'd be in excellent position," he added.

The Windies'modest attack looked vulnerable, and they weren't helped by some poor fielding in front of a first-day Brisbane crowd of 14,774 spectators - some 2000 more than attending the first day of the corresponding Test against New Zealand last year.

But finger-spinner Sulieman Benn, who dropped Katich on 81, took a sharp return catch to dismiss Hussey for 66, and skipper Chris Gayle took a screamer at slip to dismiss Clarke for 41 to even the scales.

Katich, on 92, was unfortunate to feather a catch down the leg-side off Dwayne Bravo to deny himself a century when he and Hussey were rattling along just before tea.

Australia's inability to cash in on their dominance was reminiscent of key periods in the Ashes series, during which their batsmen and bowlers were the leading run-scorers and wicket-takers but lost the series 2-1.

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