India vs Australia: Ravichandran Ashwin nutmegs Pat Cummins, bamboozles Rishabh Pant too

Ajinkya Rahane feels Australia have a quality bowling attack

We'll work it out, but it's a tough wicket and they bowled really well. That should have been a note of caution for the batsman, but he didn't heed it and skied the very next ball for Harris to take an easy catch in the deep.

Officials in Australia said they were anxious after a modest 23,802 turned out for the opening day of the Test series in Adelaide on Thursday, the lowest day-one attendance since the venue was redeveloped in 2013. The statistics show that India's 44 percent of the deliveries were good length and only eight percent were full.

Ashwin's improved lengths and willingness to take pace off his deliveries were noticeable aspects of a technique which he has worked hard to adapt to Australian conditions.

OUT! Ishant Sharma strikes. The lanky paceman's first spell read 5-3-6-1. Marcus Harris nearly caught it, with the ball barely crossing over the ropes and the umpire took some time to call it a six. The bowling had not been as aggressive as Australia's.

The runs have come slowly but on Day 3, Head will remain the key.

What has left the CA stumped is the lack of overall support so far from the strong Indian contingent living in Perth.

With the strong breeze blowing across the ground, Ashwin got the ball to drift nicely. By dismissing the debutant before lunch, Ashwin ensured that India went into the break on a positive note. After that, Travis Head along with Mitchell Starc stopped the Indian bowlers from picking any more wickets. Majority of the balls sailed just over the stumps and over half of them were on the line of the sixth stump.

Others will feel Australia are barely recognisable from their last visit, when Steve Smith's side hammered England by 120 runs on the way to an eventual 4-0 Ashes triumph.

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Rishabh Pant (25) had some moments with Mitchell Starc and seemed to get the better of the left-arm pacer but he edged Lyon to leave India in a vulnerable position. He had only managed to hit one boundary.

The temperature in Adelaide neared 40 degrees Celsius (104 degrees Fahrenheit) but cloud cover provided favourable conditions for India's attack.

R Ashwin took three of the four Australia wickets to fall on day two.

In between the 20th and the 70th over, a period that demanded restriction of runs, the Indian bowling unit bowled 16 maidens, an indication of how well they applied the clamps on the Australia batting by persisting with the tactics of boring the batsmen out. Peter Handscomb had settled in well and India were starting to fret a little.

Yet few players have to bear with an asterisk next to their name as big as Ashwin has to.

"We don't isolate it as a fast bowling or spin bowling pack, we identify it as a bowling unit together because one can not exist without the other".

"He's made a huge effort over the last nine months I guess and it's showing in his batting and now it's showing in his fielding". Today was another ideal attrition day for us. They are two completely different bowlers, and only recently has Ashwin begun to have the advantage the other two offspinners do: a complete attack that builds the pressure up from the other end. "That's what we have always asked for from the bowling unit and we have been doing that on a consistent basis now".

Australian bowling coach David Saker confirmed it had been a premeditated plan for the quicks to pitch it up and lure India's batsmen into false shots. But the job is not done yet.

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