Australia batted against themselves on Adelaide's drop-in wicket, each man knowing only he could get himself out.
Adelaide's first transportable Test pitch, as far as batsmen were concerned, promised to be more check-in than drop-in. England, after fielding two spinners and losing an influential toss, had no option but to hang in there.
But, by the end of an engrossing first day, they had achieved their primary goal of nailing Australia to a score of 273 for ther loss of five wickets, with half centuries from George Baily (53) and Shane Watson (51).
Earlier, opener Chris Rogers struck a well-made 72 with eleven boundaries, while skipper Michael Clarke was unbeaten at the close on 48 in the company of wicketkeeper Brad Haddin.
David Warner scored 29, played with freedom, perhaps too much, before getting out chipping a cut shot in the air.
Watson played the innings of a Test No.3. He presented a broad defensive block, patting the ball straight. He used his feet to the spinners, often defensively, to get forward and smother. He waited for loose balls on the offside before he attacked.
Only after batting for an hour and a half, on and off with rain delays, did he give way and start playing across the line on the onside. It was very much the innings needed from Watson, until it ended, innocuously, needlessly, with a catch to the bowler. He had only looked troubled by himself.
Bailey was much more comfortable than on the springy Gabba wicket. He and Clarke launched a calculated attack on the second new ball, using the extra pace and bounce.
Bailey was out to a Stuart Broad bouncer to Graeme Swann diving at square leg.
England were as tense in the field, and it showed when they dropped three chances.
Broad, Anderson, Swann and Panesar were the wicket takers for the visitors, with Broad snaring two for 63.
--ANI (Posted on 05-12-2013)