Monday, 25 March 2019

India wins first ever Test series in Australia

Photo: Julian Smith/EPA

SYDNEY: India ended a 71-year wait for a test series victory in Australia on Monday, their 2-1 triumph finally confirmed when the rain-affected fourth and final test ended in a draw at Sydney Cricket Ground early on Monday afternoon.

The finale may have ultimately have turned out to be a damp squib but Virat Kohli’s tourists utterly dominated what action there was to deservedly become the first side from the Asian sub-continent to take the honours Down Under.

Wins in the first test in Adelaide and third in Melbourne ensured they could not lose the series and their batsmen, led by a 193 from Cheteshwar Pujara, batted Australia out of the fourth match with a daunting 622-7 declared total in the first innings.

That all but destroyed home hopes of a face-saving victory and India’s spinners then got to work to drive home the advantage in the field against an Australia side that failed to muster a single century over the series.

The hosts were duly dismissed for 300 and Kohli did not hesitate to go for the jugular by enforcing the follow-on – the first time in 30 years Australia had suffered such ignominy on home soil.

Ultimately, it was the Sydney weather that saved Australia from a 3-1 humiliation with no play possible after tea on day four, when they had mustered up six runs without loss in their second innings.

“By far, it has to be at the top of the pile,” Kohli said at the presentation ceremony when asked if the series win was the biggest moment in his career.

“Having been to this country three times now and to understand what we’ve done has never been done before is something that we can really be proud for.

“I feel the series win will give us a different identity as an Indian team and going forward I think we can inspire more kids to do the same when they grow up and play cricket for the country.”

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