Monday, March 18, 2013
Cricket India Vs Australia: India Seal Test Series 3-0, Create History!
India defeated Australia by 6 wickets in the Mohali Test today clinching the Series 3-0 and regaining the Border-Gavaskar Trophy after they lost it 0-4 in Australia. They have indeed created history by the effort. Never before in Test cricket history against Australia have India won more than two Tests in a series and never with a zero margin. Now they have a very good chance of making it 4-0, an exact revenge delivered, in Delhi where the last Test starts from 22nd March, 2013. India also never won three Tests in a series since 1993-94 when they swept Sri Lanka under the leadership of Mohammad Azharuddin. For Australia they have never lost three Tests in a series since 1988-89 under the leadership of Alan Border. The most positive aspect of the Mohali Test of swinging fortunes is that the match had a nail biting finish in the last moments of the last day converting it into a one-day thriller.
Aussie captain Michael Clarke did come in at No. 6 to bat, but he never looked at ease due to his troubling back falling yet again to the guiles of more spinner than an all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja. At 179 for 9 it looked to be all over for Australia with India chasing a very gettable target. But the near centurion of the first innings Mitchell Starc (35) with the robust company offered by Xavier Doherty (18 not out) decided to fight off an Indian victory at all costs struggling for more than 18 overs for 44 runs. Time was running out for India and the total threatened to get bigger and bigger. When Australia folded up finally for 223 runs India had a target of 133 to win in possible 40 overs. On the last day pitch of a Test it was never easy and the Australian bowling attack made India huff for every run, but the absence of Shane Watson and James Pattinson came handy for India though they were also without the man of the match Shikhar Dhawan who got a hand injury while fielding. Australians in the final analysis must blame themselves for a consistent poor show and not being able to at least save this match.
Cheteshwar Pujara who opened in place of Dhawan and Murli Vijay progressed comfortably, but with the fall of regular wickets pressure started building up and Tendulkar succumbed to it by falling run out. It was nearly getting to a run-a-ball suspense when a few lusty hits by captain Dhoni and Jadeja saw Team India through to a historic win. More positively all the Indian batsmen contributed this time for the win.
The Indian spinners held sway on the last day with Jadeja getting three scalps while Ravichandran Ashwin and Pragyan Ojha got two each. Pacer Bhuvaneshwar Kumar did the real damage yesterday by mopping off three top order batsmen. The Scorecard:
Mohali Test will be remembered for its ups and downs, a real tight finish and glorious batting by Dhawan and Vijay. Cricket Australia will have a real dilemma of team selection for the Delhi Test with an unfit captain and a possible return of vice-captain Shane Watson. For the Indian fans it’s time to celebrate.
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