David Warner propelled Australia to a 363-run lead with a second century in the match on the fourth day of the first Test in Adelaide. Anchoring the innings, the opener made 102 after the hosts had bowled the visitors out for 444 earlier in the first session. Nathan Lyon was India’s undoing on the fourth morning as they lost five wickets for 75 runs in 19.4 overs. (Also See: HIGHLIGHTS: 1st TEST, DAY 4 - AUSTRALIA VS INDIA, Adelaide Oval)
Australia were 290/5 at stumps with Steven Smith (52*) and Brad Haddin (14*) at the crease.
Earlier, Lyon unsettled the Indian batsmen and returned with a five-wicket haul in the innings. Towards the end of the first hour of play, he claimed the crucial wicket of Rohit Sharma to set the ball rolling. Having seen through Mitchell Johnson and Ryan Harris’ overs with Wriddhiman Saha, the middle-order bat was sent back by Lyon. After coming forward and hitting the off-spinner over mid-on, Rohit was out caught and bowled by Lyon the very next ball.
Couple of overs later, Peter Siddle rocked back Karn Sharma’s middle stump however, in the following over Australia missed the chance of sending Mohammed Shami back. The batsman’s wild swing sent the ball sailing to deep mid-wicket but was dropped by Siddle for nine. In his next over, Lyon dealt a double blow. Saha was out, caught at first slip after the ball turned and Ishant Sharma was the off-spinner’s fifth wicket, caught at short-leg.
With Varun Aaron, Shami continued to go for the big shots and after lofting Siddle over mid-wicket for a six, he was caught in the slips signaling the end of India’s innings.
Ishant then shared the new ball with Shami while Chris Rogers and David Warner negotiated the Indian attack. The pair added 32 to the 73-run lead until Lunch was taken.
Virat Kohli then opened the second session with Karn Sharma. The leg-spinner accounted for Rogers’ wicket in the second over. The batsman departed hitting the ball straight to mid-wicket for 21. Warner seemed to continue where he had left in the first innings and slammed Vijay over mid-wicket for six as he took the attack to the spinners.
Kohli meanwhile changed Karn’s ends and re-introduced Ishant into the attack. However, the Warner-Watson pair continued to add runs at an unhurried pace. Half-way through the session, the opener reached his fifty as the bowlers continued to toil on.
Kohli soon replaced Karn with Rohit as India continued their hunt for a breakthrough and Varun Aaron replaced Ishant in the 32nd over. Aaron claimed Warner while on 66 but to India’s disappointment, the pacer had over-stepped. A spirited Aaron banged the ball in hard but ended up conceding extras in his next over.
With 107 runs for the loss of one wicket in 28 overs in the session, Warner had extended Australia’s lead to 212 with Watson.
India kicked off the final session of the day with a wicket. In the first over post-tea, Shami dislodged Watson’s bails with a reverse swinging delivery and provided his team with a much needed wicket. 28 runs later, Aaron’s efforts finally earned him a reward. The speedster took the edge off Clarke’s willow and the wicketkeeper took the catch to send back the Australia captain. In the next delivery by Shami, India would have bid good bye to Warner had Vijay been able to hold on to a tough chance at gully.
The opener continued to anchor the innings and with a boundary through mid-wicket brought up his second century of the game. It was the second time in his career that the batsman had scored a century in each innings of a Test. But on 102, found his bails toppled while looking to reverse sweep Karn.
Mitchell Marsh joined Smith in the middle and the duo launched into the attack to add vital runs to the lead after taking it past 300. The debutant leg-spinner was lofted into the stands thrice in an over as Marsh collected 24 runs from it to reach 40 in quick time. However, while looking to clear the boundary he was caught at long-on by Vijay off Rohit in the following over.
Haddin then saw the hosts through to the end of day’s play with Smith in an unbroken 24-run stand.
End of Day 1: Australia 1st inn 354/6 in 89.2 overs (D Warner 145, S Smith 72*, M Shami 2/83, V Aaron 2/95, I Sharma 1/56)
End of Day 2: Australia 1st inn 517/7 decl in 120 overs (S Smith 162*, M Clarke 128, M Johnson 0*)
End of Day 3: India 1st inn 369/5 in 97 overs (V Kohli 115, C Pujara 73, A Rahane 62, M Johnson 2/90, N Lyon 2/103)
End of Day 4: