Broad silences Brisbane with telling five-for

Australia

Wicketkeeper-batsman Brad Haddin and all-rounder Mitchell Johnson spared Australia some blushes, but day one of the first Ashes Test at the Gabba in Brisbane on Thursday ultimately belonged to England fast bowler Stuart Broad.

Wicketkeeper-batsman Brad Haddin and all-rounder Mitchell Johnson spared Australia some blushes, but day one of the first Ashes Test at the Gabba in Brisbane on Thursday ultimately belonged to England fast bowler Stuart Broad.

Broad entered the series in the wake of plenty of flak after incurring the ire of opposition coach Darren Lehmann for unsporting behaviour during the Trent Bridge clash earlier this year, and was quick to silence plenty of critics on Thursday.

The right-arm fast bowler completed figures of five for 65, reducing the home side to a temperamental total of 273 for eight. The prolific haul arrived as Broad's best figures in Australia – and capped an unprecedented 50 wickets for the calendar year.

Host captain Michael Clarke's decision to bat first after winning the toss promised a lot, but eventually under-delivered almost entirely. The final tally, in fact, would have read considerably worse were it not for Haddin and Johnson's collective defiance.

The pair inspired with a fighting 114-run alliance, as the right-handed Haddin marked a momentous 50th Test match cap with a rearguard 78 not out and the left-handed Johnson justified a return to the XI with an aggressive 64.

The animated Broad was remarkable on either side of the lunch break, removing opener Chris Rogers and all-rounder Shane Watson with a probing line and sharp lateral movement, before dismissing Clarke with steep bounce. The left-handed David Warner, meanwhile, undid all the good work of an attacking 49 by holing out to cover fielder Kevin Pietersen – giving Broad a fourth victim.

George Bailey started well on debut, driving three opening runs down the ground. The right-hander's stay, however, was shortlived. Fast bowler James Anderson's return to the attack induced another edge to the slip cordon, with skipper Alastair Cook at hand for a comfortable catch.

Bailey's departure demanded a fightback, and Johnson and Haddin duly obliged. The introduction of the second new ball, however, was always going to test a duo very comfortable against the old one. Broad didn't disappoint, sniping through the left-hander's defence to clinch the milestone. The partisan crowd, regardless, would not stop jeering the Englishman.

Tail-ender Peter Siddle became Anderson's second victim, while the tall Chris Tremlett was unable to add another to his earlier removal of batsman Steven Smith. Smith counterattacked well, but was genuinely undone by Tremlett's additional bounce. The lanky right-armer, indeed, did enough to warrant selection ahead of the rejected Steven Finn and Boyd Rankin.

The stalwart Haddin stood firm throughout, striking seven boundaries and a six. A superb century will beckon come day two, provided tail-enders Ryan Harris and Nathan Lyon act as complementary shepherds.

England, understandably, won't want the final total to extend beyond 300 – if that. Openers Michael Carberry and Cook will be greeted by a fairly placid pitch, but an Australian attack led by the in-form Harris and resurgent Johnson.

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