First day of Australia-New Zealand Test achieve Record attendance

The first Test between Australia and New Zealand is underway and it started in the best possible fashion as the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) recorded the sixth-highest attendance ever for Day 1 of a Boxing Day Test.

The first-day attendance at the MCG was 80,473 and it was a jam-packed stadium during the first day of the Boxing Test between two competitive Test sides. The Boxing Day Test is the highlight of the cricket calendar in Australia and routinely attracts throngs of spectators, with the 91,112 who watched England in 2013 the record.

The attendance during the first day on Thursday was also the second biggest for a non-Ashes fixture on Boxing Day, behind only the 85,661 who witnessed Australia play the West Indies in 1975. The Blackcaps are playing their first Boxing Day Test in Australia since 1987 and Cricket Australia chief Kevin Roberts said the huge crowd pointed to the popularity of the sport in both countries.

“Thanks so much to the Australian and New Zealand fans who made history at the MCG today. The atmosphere was brilliant from ball one and reflective of the great rivalry between our two nations on the field, and the close relationship we have off it,” Roberts said.

The previous day one record for an Australia-New Zealand Test in Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) was 51,087.

It was a balanced battle and an even day for both of the sides at MCG. New Zealand skipper Kane Williamson opted to bowl first after winning the toss. They got an early breakthrough after removing Joe Burns for a golden duck. However, David Warner and Labuschagne repaired the early damaged.

The man in-form Labuchagne scored yet another fifty before departing for 63 while Warner got dismissed for 41. Trent Boult picked up one wicket, but it was the all-rounder De Grandhomme, who provided New Zealand with two wickets,

After a rare failure in the Pakistan series, Smith is once again back at his very best as he remained unbeaten for 77 and well on his to way to score a hundred. Australia ended the day with 257 runs on the board, losing 4 wickets.