After facing defeat in the 4th test thereby loosing the chance to regain the Ashes title, speculators and critics hardly believed a bounce back from Australia to at least draw the test series and get some relief from their agony.
The fifth Ashes test being played at Sydney cricket ground Australia, is still an important game from the prospect of both the nations as England want to win it and seal the series 3-1 where as Australia badly wants to win this one in order to draw the series
after they could not win the Ashes title.
First day at Sydney was less cricket but more drama as Weather stepped in, standing like an obstacle in the way of the game to proceed. Australia won the toss and chose to bat. Ricky Ponting was not present in the playing 11 for his injured figure and was
replaced in this match by a natural sensation, Usman Khwaja.
As the conditions were overcast the ball swung and did its bit but the determined Australian openers put in some excellent effort and gave a 55 runs stand until Phillip Hughes was out caught on the bowling of Chris Tremlett. He batted prettly well for his
31. After the fall of the first wicket, the much waited Usman Khwaja entered the crease. A lot of headlines were made regarding this young natural talent with a gifted batting technique prior to the start of the match. He was playing in place of Ponting and
with so much expectations already from him before even the match had started, was certainly put under substantial pressure and was tested with the ball by the English bowlers.
He along with Shane Watson, performed really well and together they added 50 runs to the score board. Khwaja played very calmly and kept his composure. Both nicely guided the ball in the park to keep the score board ticking. Khwaja scored his early 15 runs
from just eight deliveries indicating what substance he was made off.
At the total of 105, Watson was sent back to the dressing room courtesy a great delivery from Tim Bresnan which was caught by Andrew Strauss. Michael Clarke came down on the turf to play a captains knock. Clarke was also under good amount of pressure for
his first test as Australia’s 43rd Captain.
He could not perform well and gave away his wicket to Tim Bresnan after scoring only 4 runs, leaving Australia 113 for 3 after a good opening start. The end to the rain hit day was not again a good one for Australia as they lost their young sensation Khwaja
in the dying moments of the day while playing a lofted paddle sweep to Graeme Swann which was caught by Jonathan Trott. This caused Australia to end the day at 134 for 4. Khwaja played wonderfully well for his 37 runs but it certainly could have been a lot
more better. The total play for the day was only for 59 overs as rain kept on hitting the ground and putting the play to halt time and again.
Will the second day be an interesting one? Will Australia fight back after a bit of a shamble in the last quarter of the play on the first day? Will England be able to strike quickly and take the attack onto the Australians? A lot of questions but only one
way to answer them, follow the game.