New Delhi: Excitement, thrill, action, reaction, altercation, drama, emotions; the first Test of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy played at Adelaide Oval covered all these aspects and set the tone for rest of the series.
Though the visiting team lost a closely fought battle against Australia, but it could have been any one's game. Till the fourth Day, the match was evenly poised, and all three results were possible. On the fifth and final day, the match went through many twist and turns, before the home team eventually sealed the win by 48 runs.
Aussies set a tricky target of 363 runs in front of India and at one stage India looked in control to chase the total when opener Murali Vijay and skipper Virat Kohli were at the crease and closing in on their hundreds. But things suddenly starting working in favour of the home team after the fall of Vijay's wicket, as his nerves got the better of him and he got out on 99.
Soon, Australian tweaker, Nathan Lyon started using the rough area, created by the speedsters, to good effect and was aided by a bit of luck. However, the resilient Kohli looked kept the pressure by scoring timely boundaries from the other end as India chipped away at the Aussie total.
But the offie, who scalped five wickets in the first innings, started spinning a web around Indian batsmen and they appeared hapless while facing him.
Ajinkya Rahane was caught at silly point of Lyon's bowling. But the replays showed the Mumbai batsman had not nicked or glowed the ball. But rest of the Indian batsmen threw away their wickets. After the fall of Kohli's wicket, who in a rush of blood went for a maximum towards mid-wicket but ended up giving a simple catch to Mitchell Marsh at the boundary, Indian chase well apart.
Lyon emerged as the hero for Australia as he picked up seven wickets in the second innings to play a match-winning role. In the end, he was rightly rewarded with Man of the Match award.
But a nail-biting finish in the opening match will certainly take the already hyped four-match Test series to another level.
The second Test of the series is scheduled to take place at Brisbane from December 17.