Marnus Labuschagne, who struck his fifth Test ton on Friday, rued getting out for 108 and not converting his ton into a daddy hundred, which, he feels, would have put Australia in a really strong position. Having endured a long summer, Labuschagne admitted to fatigue creeping out in his batting.
In each of the first three Tests, Marnus Labuschagne suffered from the Joe Root syndrome, failing to make starts count, but in front of his home crowd at the Gabba on Friday, the Queenslander finally got the monkey off his back. After riding his luck in the initial stages of his innings, Labuschagne put up a clinic in the second and third sessions of Day 1 to bring up his fifth Test ton.
But just when fans expected the right-hander to slay the Indian bowlers by converting his ton into a daddy hundred, Labuschagne inexplicably fell on 108. Having at least scored 140 in each of the four previous occasions he’d passed the three figure mark, Labuschagne’s 108, if anything, came as a shock, and it also ensured that Australia squandered the advantage they’d worked extremely hard for.
Speaking at the end of Day 1, the 26-year-old rued not getting a big score and putting his team in a stronger position.
“I’m definitely disappointed not going on and getting a really big score, which would have put us in a better position as a team,” Labuschagne told reporters at a virtual press conference at the end of Day 1.
“We’ll still take this position as a team, five for 274, really good performances, really nice to see Greeny and Tim finish it out there when we lost two wickets in quick succession.”
Having batted flawlessly at the SCG, Labuschagne played quite a few ‘tired’ shots today, none more so than the miscued pull that resulted in his eventual downfall. Even prior to his dismissal, Labuschagne looked restless and presented India with multiple opportunities which the visitors refused to take. The Queenslander admitted that fatigue started to set in, and claimed that the hot Brisbane weather added to the complexity of the challenge.
“Out there, [there was] the physical and the mental [challenge], and you try to make sure you stay on. Doesn’t matter who is bowling at you. Making sure you have a 100 percent concentration; especially in Brisbane here it gets very hot and humid. You know if you keep the bowlers out there that it’s really tough to keep backing up. It’s definitely a mental challenge at this time of the series and with the way things are,” Labuschagne said.
Labuschagne compiled a fine 108 today, but it came against a second string Indian attack that comprised two debutants, one of whom hadn’t played a first-class game in three years. But despite the relative inexperience, the Queenslander lauded the discipline showed by the Indian bowlers and spoke highly of the plans and strategies devised by the visitors.
“Indian bowling attacks are very disciplined, doesn’t matter who is bowling. They’re very planned and strategic and we saw that today with their bowling attack. They were pretty disciplined early and didn’t give us many scoring opportunities in that first session.”
Australia ended Day 1 on 274/5, with young Cameron Green (28*) and skipper Tim Paine (38*) getting through to stumps unbeaten.