Fifty! Warner 50 from 39 balls
11th over: Australia 71-0 (Warner 50, Finch 18) Warner is in a mood! Chahal comes on for his first over of leg-spin. Finch knocks a single first ball, then Warner doesn’t even take a sighter before slog-sweeping six over midwicket! Pongo. Predictably Chahal bowls shorter, so Warner makes room and cuts him for four. A single raises his minor milestone. This is looking like another ugly day for India coming down the line.
10th over: Australia 59-0 (Warner 39, Finch 17) It’s Finch’s turn to have a shot at Saini, clubbing him over extra cover first ball for four. Warner smacks a cut shot for a couple. Seven more from the Saini over, who’s leaked 28 from three.
9th over: Australia 52-0 (Warner 37, Finch 12) Bumrah returns, and Warner is happy for him to use up another over. Ducks the short ones, defends a couple, the scoring consists of an early Finch single and a wide.
8th over: Australia 50-0 (Warner 37, Finch 11) Shami finally bowls a less-than-perfect ball, marginally short and marginally straight, so Warner goes back and pulls between square and midwicket for four. Along the carpet. Then gets a bit of width, the same length, so Warner deliberately lofts the cut shot for four more! Over the infield. He’s in a mood today. The first team milestone comes up, and a 15th half-century partnership for this pair along with their 11 century stands.
7th over: Australia 41-0 (Warner 29, Finch 10) Yep, Warner wants a big piece of Saini. He plays an old-school Warner shot, dipping the knee a bit and flogging the ball over mid-off with an angled bat for four. Then shuffles away from the line of another and crashes it through the covers. Saini has a big target on his chest today. Has to find a way to respond.
6th over: Australia 29-0 (Warner 19, Finch 9) Shami is doing it again, with an over conceding only a couple of singles as he hits a perfect line and length. The first of those runs takes Warner and Finch past the Boon-Marsh partnership though.
5th over: Australia 27-0 (Warner 18, Finch 8) Navdeep Saini is on early, and Warner wants a piece of him straight away. Barely shorter than a length ball, but Warner cracks the pull shot away behind square for six! Just lands on the rope out there, efficiency to the max. Saini struggled on Friday, he’s inexperienced at this level, and the Australians probably want to target him especially to throw out India’s plans. The batsmen follow up with a few singles and the over costs nine runs.
4th over: Australia 18-0 (Warner 10, Finch 7) Another run behind square for Finch, getting a little nick on Bumrah’s delivery angled at the pads. Warner faces Bumrah for the first time and gets the drop-and-run game going, just straight of midwicket in the ring. That midwicket position is in quite close for Finch, so when Bumrah angles in for a thicker edge, it lobs over Kohli for two runs! The captain frustrated, would have been a regulation catch if he’d been in a regulation position. Finally Finch gets another opportunity at the ball slanted in and gets the full face into it, flicking away behind square for four!
“It’s not hot everywhere,” emails Donna Cianciosi. “It’s a cool 22 degrees here in Perth. And we’re expecting rain tonight.”
Ah, Donna. If only anyone was allowed in.
3rd over: Australia 10-0 (Warner 9, Finch 1) Runs keep coming for Warner. Two of them safely tucked through midwicket, two more very unsafely off the top edge but the ball carries over square leg into the empty spaces beyond. Then he edges Shami to deep third, allowing Finch to score his first run of the day with a leg glance.
Col has dropped us an email from Surrey over in the Old Dart. “3.30am on a Monday morning and I’m reading the OBO… life sure is weird at times! Hoping Steve Smith has still got those hands he recently found again, until the Ashes anyway. Mostly though I’m just glad this is a sport where you won’t be going on about VAR this, VAR that or VAR the other, it drives me nuts. Right, time to make a bucket of coffee and see how long I last, maybe I’ll make it past sunrise.”
He follows up to say, “I’ve just realised it’s Sunday morning, not Monday! Lockdown, I’m blaming lockdown.”
Days of the week are overrated, Col. Total fabrication anyway. Ask a raccoon or a meteor what day of the week it is. They don’t waste time with that junk.
2nd over: Australia 4-0 (Warner 4, Finch 0) Jasprit Bumrah to Finch for the second over. Bumrah with that walk-up approach, the last few jogged steps, the Superman cosplay with the front arm outstretched, then the catapult action that zings the ball in. He’s pinning down Finch around the line of the off stump, four balls in succession before Finch unfurls a crisp drive that hits mid-off direct for no runs. Back of a length to cover point, and Bumrah completes a maiden over.
There are currently three Australian opening partnerships worth more runs than Finch-Warner. Those three are: Boon-Marsh with 3523, Gilchrist-Waugh with 3853, and Gilchrist-Hayden with 5372.
1st over: Australia 4-0 (Warner 4, Finch 0) Here we go. Mohammed Shami with the ball, who bowled so well on Friday when all around him were losing their heads. Warner facing, and the second ball of the match is Warner at his best. Fractional width, and Warner just places his hands through the line of the ball, diverting it through point along the ground for four. Shami has a big lbw shout to follow but it looked outside the line and high. The boundary takes the Finch-Warner partnership in all ODIs to 3500 runs.
Never let it be said that we don’t put ourselves on the line for journalism at this outfit – I just took a 20-minute walk to the ground to assess the atmospheric conditions, and it is absolutely foul out there. It’s not only about to hit 40 degrees but there is a hair-dryer wind blowing, and it’s strong. I staggered into the ground looking like John the Baptist: dessicated, deranged, with a thirst for a thousand years. Inside the air-conditioned buildings everyone still has fat drops of sweat rolling constantly down their faces. Yuck, yuck, yuck.
In cricket terms, that means fielding is going to be a Madras ‘86 sort of experience. The wind is blowing from the west directly across the pitch, so it could cause havoc with run-ups and the flight of the ball for either bowler. Hitting to the O’Reilly Stand will have a big advantage, and hitting aerially towards the Members would be ill-advised.
There’s supposed to be a cool change in the late afternoon, which would be very much to Australia’s advantage before they field.
Australia have made one change to their XI, with Marcus Stoinis missing out due to injury and Moises Henriques coming in. No Cameron Green, then.
Aaron Finch *
Alex Carey +
Virat Kohli, meanwhile, is putting out an identical team.
Virat Kohli *
Updated at 10.31pm EST
Australia captain Aaron Finch has won the toss and elected to bat first. That is a very big advantage on a stinking hot day.
Updated at 10.31pm EST
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Game two already! It’s a balmy 39 degrees in Sydney’s early afternoon and presumably getting hotter as the baked earth gives back its heat with a vengeance later in the afternoon. We’re threatening and setting November heat records all over Australia. But don’t worry! Everything’s fine! Let’s burn some gas as a transition fuel!
In short, as far as the cricket goes, you don’t want to be fielding first. Especially because the over rates we saw on Friday mean that you’ll be fielding for four hours.
Australia won the first match comfortably with a clinical batting display. Huge opening partnership from Finch and Warner, super-fast ton to follow from Smith, ridonkulus hitting display from Maxwell, and that was about all she wrote. The score got close to 400, the Indians didn’t, and that young up-and-comer Virat Kohli didn’t make a big score. Which means he probably will today, going by the averages.
It probably won’t be much more fun for bowlers than it was on Friday night. Bearing in mind that India did make over 300 in the chase. But if they can move more swiftly through the overs, a couple of excellent teams should give us something good to watch.