Australian fast bowler Josh Hazlewood has lit up social media with the summer’s first Test wicket in just the second over against India.
The Aussies lost the toss against the Indians, with the tourists forcing the hosts to field on a day where oppressively hot temperatures were expected at the Adelaide Oval.
WORRYING SIGNS: The 40-year first leaving Aussie vulnerable
However, it was the Aussies who got off to the hottest start, with Hazelwood finding the outside edge of Lokesh Rahul.
The Indian opener went fishing for a pitched-up ball outside off stump, with Aaron Finch taking a simple catch in slips.
Fans flooded social media with excitement after the sensational start to the four-Test series by the Aussies.
GOT HIMMMMM COME ON AUSSIES #AUSvsIND
— courtney ♡ #forthefaithful (@courtneyyyraex) December 6, 2018
— Cobi – Betting (@Cobi05393785) December 6, 2018
— Sweekar Kapoor (@SweekarKapoor) December 6, 2018
And so goes the first “back to the pavilion” for the Summer. #AUSvsIND
— Mitch 'Red' Datson (@Mitch_Datson) December 6, 2018
Australia’s superb beginning to the Test series got even better in the seventh over as fellow paceman Mitchell Starc got in on the act.
The left-arm quick moved Murali Vijay for 11 after India’s other opener edged one through to Aussie skipper Tim Paine behind the stumps.
However, it was the third wicket from the Aussies that really stole the headlines.
With his side struggling, Indian captain Virat Kohli was looking to steady the ship for the tourists.
Much like his compatriots though, the Indian dangerman chased a delivery wide of his off stump, with Usman Khawaja taking an absolutely phenomenal catch off Pat Cummins’ delivery.
Fielding at gully, the Aussie threw himself to his left – plucking the fiercely struck shot out of the air to send the Indian skipper back to the pavilion for three runs.
The extraordinary piece of fielding was undoubtedly an early contender for ‘catch of the summer’.
Hazlewood picked up his second wicket with Ajinkya Rahane (13) edging to Peter Handscomb at second slip as the Indians slumped to 4/41 before lunch.
Players bracing for Adelaide scorcher
Temperatures are forecast to hit 39 degrees on Thursday, meaning it could be a very long day in the field for Aussie quicks Starc, Pat Cummins and Hazlewood.
“It’s going to be pretty hot today but in the last few years here, particularly in domestic cricket, there’s been a bit in the wicket,” Australia skipper Paine said after losing the toss.
“It’s a little bit soft under foot because of the weather this week.
“It is difficult (leaving Marsh out of the side) but we think the three fast bowlers and Nathan Lyon can do the job … they’re all coming in really fresh.”
Veteran batsman Rohit Sharma edged Hanuma Vihari to claim the final spot in India’s XI.
Australia XI: Marcus Harris, Aaron Finch, Usman Khawaja, Shaun Marsh, Peter Handscomb, Travis Head, Tim Paine (capt), Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, Nathan Lyon, Josh Hazlewood.
India XI: KL Rahul, Murali Vijay, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli (capt), Ajinkya Rahane, Rohit Sharma, Rishabh Pant, Ravichandran Ashwin, Mohammed Shami, Ishant Shama, Jasprit Bumrah.