Mohali: Shane Watson helped Australia put up 224/5 with a fighting century in a pitch which seems to be on the slower side on Day 1 of the first Test match between India and Australia.
Ind Vs Aus - 1st Test - Scorecard
Watson(101*) and skipper Ricky Ponting(71) put on a superb partnership of 141 for the Australians earlier before Ponting was dismissed through a run out by Raina. The duo had put together an unfinished partnership of 88 runs for the second wicket before lunch and stretched their partnership to 141 runs before Ponting was dismissed through a run out by Suresh Raina in the mid session of play.
At that stage of play Australia looked to take charge of the match and were looking good to post a big total. However, the Indian bowlers, especially the spinners bounced back into the match strongly as Harbhajan Singh and Pragyan Ohja kept it very economical and hard for the Australians as the runs dried up.
Watson and Ponting had survived some scares and overcame the early loss of Simon Katich to gain control of the match. Watson was lucky early on as he was dropped by Sehwag at gully off the bowling of Zaheer in his very first over of the day. While Ponting was caught while on 14 off the bowling of Ishant Sharma but he had overstepped for the sixth time to let Ponting survive.
Harbhjan Singh who was doubtful for the Test due to injury, got the third breakthough of Michael Clarke in the mid session of play. Rahul Dravid took a sharp catch at the slips. Clarke scored 14 runs off 39 balls.
Post Tea session the Indian bowlers managed to pull the team back in the game as Watson and Hussey found very difficult to keep the runs flowing. Watson, however, patiently reached the three figure mark and continued to keep the Indian bowlers at bay.
Just when it looked like the Hussey and Watson would end the day for the Aussies, Zaheer Khan got rid off Hussey, lbw, for 17, just eight overs before the close of play. The he followed it up with another wicket of Marcus North for duck in the 85th over.
Earlier, Ricky Ponting had won the toss and elected to bat first.