Former Australian captain Mark Waugh believes the courageous partnership between Axar Patel and Mohammed Shami took the game away from Australia in the first game of the Border Gavaskar Trophy. Pat Cummins-led Australian team suffered a massive loss against India in the first of the four-match Test series in Nagpur. The world's number 1 Test was completely outsmarted by second-seeded Men in Blue in the series opener.

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Australian batters performed poorly as the match ended on the third day as the visitors were bundled out for just 91 runs in the second innings, suffering an inning and 130-run defeat. While speaking to Star Sports, former Australian cricketer Waugh pointed out a few aspects which cost Australians the series opener. Waugh felt that the batting partnership between Axar-Shami and the lack of short deliveries from Australian bowlers were the reasons behind the defeat.

“The pitch was fresh, It looked like it was spinning a lot more. They got Jadeja out early on. You have got to give credit to Axar Patel and Mohammad Shami, they batted really well. There was a dropped catch for Shami, which was costly. I think from my point of view, Patel batted really well,” Waugh said.

The former Aussie further claimed that Pat Cummins should have bowled a few more overs.  “When the tail-enders start to form a partnership and look comfortable on the crease, I believe it’s worth to roll the dice a little bit. Maybe the Australians are guilty of not trying enough and waiting for something to happen, a mistake by the Indian batters maybe", he further added.

Talking about the match, Indian spinners – Ravindra Jadeja and R Ashwin – rattled Australian batters in both innings. Jadeja picked seven wickets while R Ashwin bagged 8-wickets in the match as the duo firmed the grip on the game. 

Besides Jadeja and Ashwin, Rohit Sharma also made a valuable contribution with the bat as he smashed a brilliant century in the first innings. Both teams will regroup in Delhi for the second Test match, which is set to commence on February 17, 2023.

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