Australia v India – Perth Test, Day1: A nose in front?

PERTH DAY 1 2018


The game did not get of to a very good start for this little rabbit. First of all, the flight from Mildura to Melbourne was late.  They would not let us on our connecting flight and then spent five hours in Australia’s biggest con food outlet – Tullamarine airport.


To add insult to our delay it was nothing to getting a taxi from Perth airport to the city.  Won’t tell you the final cost but it was $20 on the meter before we left the airport grounds!


It looked a wonderful morning when I decided to walk to the ground via Hay Street. Only 20 minutes said the concierge.  Twenty minutes my arse!  It was forty minutes at least and then we had to walk up the steps called Everest before we even entered the ground.


No wonder P. Baulderstone is a GOM*.


Disgusting to see that the majority of the area under shade has been closed because the powers that be said ticket sales did not warrant opening the top level. The AMA had a lot to say yesterday and they certainly were speaking on behalf of the “grass roots”.   The members have the privilege of using the top deck though


A good toss to win for Australia even though the wicket looks to have life in it.  Not so for the first couple of overs anyway.  Who knows.   New ground, new wicket, new everything including a lack of cricket atmosphere at this stage.  Not to mention the scoreboard which is appalling with its lack of information to spectators.


No change in the Australian line-up while India lose Ashwin and Roht through injury and bring in another quick in Umesh Yadav.


Digressing for a moment. I notice there was great confusion in the media box as to what comes first when it comes to scones with jam and cream.  There seems to be two schools of thought. Jam or cream first?


Harris and Finch look confident, especially the boy from Colac who must be on tenterhooks at the moment. Both are not being tempted at the moment with anything wide.


Ishant is called! What a farce two seconds after the ball is past the batsman. If there is one thing that I would like to see happen in cricket is for umpires to have the guts to call it as they see it e.g. no-balls, run outs.


Harris plays a lovely straight drive for Sharma – make that two in a row.  Looks to be plenty of runs in this wicket.


Twice Finch brushes away flies as Bumrah starts his delivery.  One would think a Finch would have no trouble with flies.


Australia go to 45 when the first controversial DRS occurs.  Finch (20) looks out by my reckoning but survives.


At drinks it has been Australia’s half session.  No chances and an air of confidence in both batsmen and the coffee machine has used 3 kilograms of coffee in this time.


The much vaunted “fast wicket” has not arisen although Bumrah bowls a splendid spell to Finch who seems to be losing patience.


With four fast men in the line-up and not that much variety Harris and Finch are very much in control although they do have the occasional flash outside the off-stump.


The signs are looking good for the home team and at lunch they are 0/66. Finch 28 and Harris 36.


It is extremely hot outside the box and there is little or no breeze to give any relief to the players. The majority of spectators who are here are as far back as they can get giving the ground a very sparse look about it.


Harris reaches a fine fifty with 7 fours of 90 balls and Finch celebrates it with a punch through the covers for four. The shot of the day and he just stands there watching it fly to the boundary.


They bring up the 100 partnership from 202 balls. A wonderful start by the much-maligned Australian openers.


Vihari enters the attack. First time for a slow bowler today. He gives Finch early Christmas presents with his first 2 balls that the batsman sends to the boundary.  His fifty comes up next ball from 103 deliveries with 8 fours.


Finch (50) loses concentration and is palpably LBW to Bumrah.  1/112 and the Colacian is ropeable with himself.  It was a lazy shot playing outside the line.  Bumrah bowls a splendid over to Khawaja. He is easily the best of the Indian bowlers today.


17,000 in the ground at the moment with about 250 out in the sun.  We await the rest of the day with interest when the sun moves around.


Uzzie is being very circumspect and still has not scored and only gets his first run when Kohli sends a wild return supposedly for the keeper.


At least the Indians are keeping a good line and scoring is hard. Harris tries to take control and is lucky when a high slash is missed at second slip.  It is hard enough going for the Indians without missing what should have been taken.


Khawaja (5) slashes from Yadav and Pant takes 2/130.   A good come back by India this session but, mind you, deplorable shots by the Aussies.


Speaking of Rishabh Pant what a great example he shows to team mates.  Chasing balls that others should be getting.


India are now right in the game when Vihari gets one to kick at Harris (70) and he can’t avoid dollying a catch to Rahane at slip.  Australia 3/134.  There was nothing he could do about it.


Kohli with very good captaincy brings his strike bowler Bumrah back into the attack.  The skipper has certainly used his bowlers well during the heat.  At tea Australia 3/145.


Out come Brown’s cows for their moment of glory at lemon time.  There is nothing more ridiculous to see grown people trooping around like kindergarten children taking photos of themselves. Whoops! Even saw a friend of mine. Wait to I catch up with her.


First blood to India! The world’s greatest showman flings his right hand in the air takes the ball and keeps running.  Love him!  Handscomb (7) caught Kohli bowled Ishant.  Australia 4/148.


The green and gold had the opposition by the short and curlies at 0/111 and have now lost 4 wickets for 37 runs.


Ishant Sharma, with his face completely covered in sun-cream is a dead ringer for Dracula.  He looks venomous at any time but today he wins the Oscar.  Fearsome.


Ishant and Yadav are bowling beautifully and full credit to them and the rest of the quartet. They have never thrown in the towel today. This is an Indian side with purpose.


This is developing into a great contest at the moment with some fine bowling by the India pacemen and some great defensive batting by Marsh and Head.


Like lemmings the crowd has now come out on the bottom level into the open and enjoying the shade. Crowd is now just short of 20,000. I reckon at least 40% of the crowd have moved seats at least three times today.


Marsh (24) has a life when Pant drops a simple one from Vihari.  This could prove costly by the end of the day.


The two left-handers have now settled in well and have put on 50 from 82 balls.  Both players not afraid to attack when necessary and defended accordingly.


Marsh (45) goes trying cut Vihari and Rahane takes an easy one at slip.  Australia 5/232 and the end of a fine partnership from Head and Marsh of 84 runs.  Vihari after an ordinary first over has bowled very well for his 2/46 at this stage.


A very fine innings by Head who has now settled his position in the team very well. Has been very comfortable today and gone hard at the ball when necessary.  You might be right Rulebook.  He could be the next Australian Captain. How many is that SA have had?  Discount Bradman of course.


The new ball is due but I think Kohli might refrain for a coupe of overs.  His bowlers have worked manfully through a trying day and deserve a break.


Wrong! They are taking the new ball and Shami has it. Head continues to play his shots. He plays one hard shot too many from Ishant and is caught at third man by Shami for 58. Australia now 6/251.


The new ball has worked!


Bad luck for Ishant Sharma who seems to have strained his stomach muscles. He has bowled well today despite the heat. 2/36 is a good reward for his hard work.


At the end of the day Australia are 6/277   and are slightly ahead of their rivals. Paine 16 not out and Cummins 11.


The Indian bowlers have toiled throughout a extremely hot day and it has again been another fine day of Test cricket.




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About Bob Utber

At 80 years of age Citrus Bob is doing what he wanted to do as a 14 year-old living on the farm at Lang Lang. Talking, writing, watching sport. Now into his third book on sports history he lives in Mildura with his very considerate wife (Jenny ) and a groodle named "Chloe On Flinders". How good is that.


  1. Thanks for the shout out CB. Grand Old Man works for me.
    Was laid out watching in the air conditioned lounge room 5kms from the concrete mausoleum (after a morning spent delivering Eagles Almanacs to eager punters – regards to Paddy – jeez he can pick a mob on the slide).
    Cunis of a day’s cricket. All comes down to how the wicket holds together for me. No moisture in the deck. Sea mist and much cooler this morning, and a few showers Sunday, but was the damage done yesterday? If it holds together Kohli will make 150 on an even surface, and Australia wasted an opportunity for 500 yesterday. But Australia have the whip hand if it cracks up.

  2. Nice to see more bums on seats than in the Adelaide test. Most batsmen, with 2 exceptions, got themselves in and then proceeded to get themselves out (Head fell for the 3 card trick). It once again depends on the tail wagging for Aust to post a competitive total. From what I’ve seen of the series so far I reckon Warnie has a point when he, earlier on, said we should bring in 4 day tests.

  3. PS With Pant-O-Mime behind the stumps for India, we don’t need any TV or radio commentators with his incessant chatter and enthusiastic appealing. It’s impossible to shut him up.

  4. Mark Duffett says

    What is it with modern scoreboards? At least Blundstone Arena have scaled back the idiotic use of the screen to show live footage, but it still spends far too much time showing dinky graphics, Orwellian messages and replays of trivial interest. Even when it does deign to show an actual scoreboard, it’s still a poor second what the Adelaide Oval scoreboard manages to convey with design and technology well over a century old. They’d be better to simply do a completely faithful digital facsimile of what the Adelaide analogue masterpiece does.

  5. MD – the scoreboard is a disgrace
    FISHO – love your panto-mime. Can play
    PB – Don’t get ahead of yourself! Grumpy old Man although to your credit you have wisened up with age. You must have stopped using the quill.

  6. Head yes has ability but shots re both innings may prevent him from captaining and if we were stronger holding his spot thanks Citrus

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