Australia win toss and elect to bat in first test

Published 11/05/2015, 3:40 AM EST
Australian batsman Joe Burns dives to make his ground, during the first cricket test match between Australia and New Zealand in Brisbane November 5, 2015. REUTERS/Patrick Hamilton

BRISBANE (Reuters) – Australia captain Steve Smith won the toss and chose to bat on the opening day of the first test against New Zealand at the Gabba on Thursday.

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New Zealand’s highly-regarded strike attack of Trent Boult and Tim Southee will get the first chance to bowl on a Brisbane wicket that looks likely to feature its customary bounce and carry.

“Think it will be a little bit slow this morning, hopefully we can get through the new ball and it will be a little bit easier later on,” said Smith.

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Smith is taking charge of the team for his first test as full-time captain since assuming the role from Michael Clarke in the wake of the Ashes defeat earlier this year.

While no team has managed to beat Australia at the Gabba since West Indies in 1988, New Zealand are unbeaten in their last seven test series.

“We were keen to bat as well,” said New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum.

“Hopefully it will stay overcast for a while and we can get it swinging.”

There were no last-minute changes to the previously announced teams with Josh Hazlewood included as Australia’s third quick and Doug Bracewell getting the nod in New Zealand’s pace attack.

Smith leads a new-look side after the retirement of Clarke, Shane Watson, Chris Rogers, Brad Haddin and Ryan Harris forced a number of changes to the Australia team.

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After the Brisbane opener, the series continues with the second test in Perth before concluding in the first day-night test match at the Adelaide Oval.

Teams –

Australia: David Warner, Joe Burns, Usman Khawaja, Steve Smith (captain), Adam Voges, Mitchell Marsh, Peter Nevill (wicketkeeper), Mitchell Johnson, Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood, Nathan Lyon.

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New Zealand: Tom Latham, Martin Guptill, Kane Williamson, Ross Taylor, Brendon McCullum, James Neesham, BJ Watling (wicketkeeper), Mark Craig, Doug Bracewell, Tim Southee, Trent Boult.

(Reporting by Nick Mulvenney, editing by Greg Stutchbury)

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Dhruv George

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Dhruv George is a senior Formula One and NASCAR analyst for EssentiallySports, having authored nearly 12000 articles spanning different sports like F1, NASCAR, Tennis, NFL, and eSports. He graduated with a PG Diploma in Journalism from the Xavier Institute of Communications. Dhruv has also conducted interviews with F1 driver Pierre Gasly and Moto2 rider Tony Arbolino.

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