Mohammed Siraj made most of the second Test match at the Melbourne Cricket Ground by finishing the Boxing Day Test with 3/37 and 2/40. The Hyderabad-based bowler, in his debut test match, got Cameron Green's wicket on the morning of Day 4 and came back to take Nathan Lyon's wicket for 3 in the second innings. Siraj got Travis Head's wicket when Australia was still at 133 for 6 at stumps. With the 5 wicket feat, Siraj joined the league of cricketers like Lasith Malinga and England's Phil DeFreitas and Alex Tudor on their Test debut.
Visiting bowlers with 5 wickets on Test debut in Australia in the last 50 years:— Andy Zaltzman (@ZaltzCricket) December 29, 2020
Phil DeFreitas (5-94 in match, 1986-87)
Alex Tudor (5-108, 1998-99)
Lasith Malinga (6-92, 2004)
Mohammad Siraj (currently 5-76). https://t.co/cmSnTf2eoY#AUSvINDhttps://t.co/o1zbzFFN3f
Siraj said his hands were itching to bowl before Rahane told him to attack. "My hands were itching to bowl out there, and after lunch when Ajju bhai told me to bowl, I began warming up. Then he said to me 'you'll bowl for two overs'," he said, reported PTI.
Australian cricketer Shane Warne lauded India's performance at the MCG Boxing Day Test match and said, "The Indian bowlers were outstanding too and very well led by Ajinkya Rahane."
What a terrific day of cricket at the MCG today. Congrats to the ground staff on preparing the best wicket at the MCG for a long time. More of these type of pitches please ! The Indian bowlers were outstanding too & very well lead by @ajinkyarahane88 ! Can India bat all day ?— Shane Warne (@ShaneWarne) December 26, 2020
Veteran Indian cricketer and commentator Sunil Gavaskar noted that Ajinkya Rahane's century in the ongoing MCG Boxing Day Test was very crucial after the crushing Adelaide defeat. "I believe that this hundred is going to be one of the most important hundreds in the history of Indian cricket," Gavaskar told Seven Network.
Siraj's debut was not the only highlight of this match. Ravichandran Ashwin and Jasprit Bumrah also secured notable feats in this match. Ashwin surpassed the Sri Lankan cricketing legend Muttaiah Muralidharan's record as the former dismissed the most left-handlers at a Test match.
Bumrah equaled former India coach Anil Kumble's record and went on to become the joint-lead wicket taker for India on Day 4 of the Border-Gavaskar series against Australia. By dismissing Cummins for 22 to take his 15th Test Wicket, Bumrah mirrored Kumble's record for the most wickets taken by an Indian bowler at the MCG.
With PTI inputs; edited by Mehak Agarwal