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[Watch] Kevin Sinclair Produces Sachin Tendulkar-Esque Straight Drive Off Mitchell Starc

image-lrtasds6Starc was the star for Australia on day 1 of the Gabba Test. (X.com)

Debutant Kevin Sinclair announced his arrival in the Test arena in style as he played a lovely off-drive off the bowling of Australia’s pace spearhead Mitchell Starc on the first day of the ongoing second Test match of the two-match series at the Gabba, Brisbane, on January 25.

It was the 87th over of the first innings. Since it’s a day-night Test match, the lights were on, and an upbeat Starc with the pink ball in hand bowled a full delivery to find some movement. However, it wasn’t to be, as Sinclair presented the full face of the bat, driving the ball beautifully down the ground, away from the mid-off fielder to get a boundary for his team.

The class of the shot was such that the moment Sinclair hit the shot, he held the pose and then, in the same pose, walked towards his partner at the other end, Alzarri Joseph.

Not many cricketers on their Test debut can play a shot like Sinclair did against a 143.5 kph delivery from someone like Starc, a name that often strikes fear in the minds of lower-order batters. It was a special shot, especially coming against the bowler who has taken the most wickets with the pink ball in the history of Test cricket and was the best bowler for his team on the opening day of the Gabba Test.

Australia in control despite Windies fightback

Earlier in the day, the West Indies won the toss and chose to bat first. Kraigg Brathwaite and Tagenarine Chanderpaul held their ground in the initial half-hour of the day before the pace trio of Starc, Josh Hazlewood and captain Pat Cummins made inroads into the top and middle order of the visitors. Starc secured three wickets, while Cummins and Hoff took one each, leaving West Indies struggling at 5/64 heading into the Tea Break.

Joshua Da Silva (79 off 157) and Kavem Hodge (71 off 194) weathered the storm, adding 149 runs for the 6th wicket, frustrating the Aussies throughout the second session and the first half of the third session. While Hodge achieved his maiden Test fifty, Da Silva notched his fourth Test half-century.

Just before the second new ball, Nathan Lyon dismissed Da Silva in front of the stumps, providing a much-needed breakthrough for the hosts. Hodge appeared solid until he edged one to the slip cordon off Starc.

Joseph came in and aggressively attacked the bowlers in the last half-hour of play, scoring 32 runs off 22 balls, hitting 7 fours, and adding 41 runs for the 8th wicket alongside debutant Kevin Sinclair (16* off 37). Starc was the standout bowler of the day, securing four wickets and also becoming the fifth Australian bowler to surpass the 350-wicket mark in this format. 

While Joseph fell to Hazlewood at the stroke of stumps, Sinclair remained unbeaten. The West Indies ended the day at 266/8.