Zaheer helps India claw back into the contest
by CricketArchive Staff Reporter

Ground:Punjab Cricket Association Stadium, Mohali
Scorecard:India v Australia
Player:SR Watson, Z Khan
Event:Australia in India 2010/11

DateLine: 1st October 2010


Australian opener Shane Watson scored a patient blood and guts century as Australia posted 224/5 in their first innings at stumps on the opening day of the first Test. The Australian opener, let off on nought and 37, made an unbeaten 101 for his second Test hundred to help his side recover from an early blow with a 141-run stand for the second wicket with skipper Ricky Ponting (71).


Watson completed his hundred in the final session when he turned off-spinner Harbhajan Singh to deep square-leg for two runs. He found the fence eight times in his 279-ball knock. India on the other hand did not let Australia to fly off despite Watson's hundred as left-arm paceman Zaheer Khan grabbed three wickets, including two crucial ones in the final session. The fast bowler trapped Michael Hussey leg-before and then bowled Marcus North for duck.


Australia, who scored 101 runs in the morning after electing to bat on a pitch lacking pace and bounce, could manage only 45 in the last session. Left-arm spinner Pragyan Ojha conceded 39 runs in 31 overs. Australia were comfortably placed at 154/1 before slipping to 222/5, losing well-set Ponting, vice-captain Michael Clarke (14), Hussey and North.


Ponting looked set to play a big knock before he was run out by Suresh Raina's direct-hit at the striker's end from mid-wicket.


India were left a bowler short in the afternoon when paceman Ishant Sharma departed the field during his eighth over with a leg injury.