Mohammed Aamer
Aamer traps Warner in front AFP

Four slips in place. Mohammed Aamer runs in over the wicket. Matt Renshaw at strike. Aamer pitches up, swings it away (very late though), and Renshaw does well to survive the first ball of the first of the three-Test series between Pakistan and Australia at Brisbane. Four more dot balls follow, with a leading edge past gully to end the over. Renshaw survives, again. Australia were 4 for 0 after the first over eventful one. On the other hand, David Warner (now a reverend from a bull) started off with a boundary off his very first delivery. He doesn’t miss out on loose deliveries, does he?

Steven Smith elected to bat first in the first-ever day-night contest between Pakistan and Australia. The track, however, had more than tinge of grass on it yesterday. Australia drafted in three pacers in Mitchell Starc, Jackson Bird, and Josh Hazlewood, along with a spinner in Nathan Lyon. Pakistan, on the other hand, added Aamer, Rahat Ali, Wahab Riaz, and Yasir. All the same, the pitch appeared different on Day One. Yes, it had Australia-type bounce, but the afternoon heat seemed to have faded away the grass, resulting in very little lateral movement. Australia openers Warner and Renshaw applied themselves sensibly and played according to the merit of the ball.

Full cricket scorecard: Australia vs Pakistan, 1st Test, Brisbane Cricket Ground

No Asian team has won a Test series in Australia. India came close in 2004 but could not put the last nail in the coffin.

“Many great Pakistan teams have been to these shores before but left without winning. So, our goal in this series will be to conquer an unchartered territory,” Misbah had said in the pre-match conference.

Pakistan pace battery took their time to adjust their line and length, often bowling half-vollies that resulted in boundaries. But once they found their feet, they bowled in the corridor of uncertainty, for they conceded only one four from over No. 5 to 10.

Given the pitch did not have enough venom for the pacers, Misbah introduced Yasir into the attack in the 11th over. Surprisingly, there was turn for the leg-spinner. With a leg-slip and forward short-leg in place, he came over the wicket to square up the southpaw openers.

Along with Wahab Riaz at the other end, Yasir used the age-old technique: put a lid on the runs, forcing the batsman to play a false track.

Wahab had done his job. Misbah had sensed a wicket. He continued with Yasir and replaced Wahab with Aamer.

The strategy paid off. Warner, in the process of looking for runs, walked across to flick it away. He completely missed the line of ball and got trapped in front. Umpire Ian Gould had no trouble judging the dismissal.

Pakistan then put the hosts in further trouble. Yasir dismissed the No. 3 Usman Khawaja for a mere 4. Khawaja, with his lazy elegance, holed one straight to Misbah at mid-wicket.

Australia went into tea at 89 for 2, with Steven Smith and Renshaw at the crease.

Brief scorecard:

Australia (Matt Renshaw 46*, David Warner 32; Mohammad Aamer 1 for 22, Yasir Shah 1 for 30) vs Pakistan

(Kaustubh S. Mayekar, a reporter at CricketCountry, played cricket at U-16 level. Like his idol Rahul Dravid, he often shadow-practises cricket shots. His Twitter handle is @kaumedy_)