Australia in a good position after first day of Adelaide test match

Friday, November 26, 2004

ADELAIDE — At stumps on day one, Australia has opened a commanding lead in the second cricket test against New Zealand.

The laughter started soon after Australian captain Ricky Ponting won the toss and elected to bat on the hard, dry pitch. Openers Justin Langer and Matthew Hayden got off to a flying start, achieving 0/19 off the first two overs. Hayden was later caught and bowled by Paul Wiseman for 70. Although Hayden was clearly out, he refused to walk, insisting after the incident with Craig McMillan in the previous test, that the field umpires called for the video replay, which quickly ruled that he was out.

Ponting then came out to replace Hayden, and quickly took a fancy to the New Zealand bowlers. He eventually misjudged a spin delivery from Daniel Vettori and was stumped for 68. Damien Martyn briefly stepped in, but was cheaply dismissed for 7, only to be replaced by Darren Lehmann, who is not out on 28.

The best performance of the innings though, came from Justin Langer, who is currently not out on 144. Australia, at the time of writing, are 3/327, putting themselves into a commanding position for the second day's play.

Australia has already won the series with their previous victory in Brisbane, and this test is widely regarded merely as batting practice for Stephen Fleming's New Zealand side. Key bowler James Franklin is returning from injury in this game, but has had a poor start, with figures of 0/84 off of 14 overs.