India’s won a test cricket series in Australia for the first time with the rain-disrupted fourth test petering out in a draw with no play possible at the Sydney Cricket Ground today.
Wins in Adelaide and Melbourne had given Virat Kohli’s side a 2-1 lead going into the final test and a draw was enough to secure a breakthrough that had eluded all previous Indian touring parties for 71 years.
The draw looked assured after India scored 622 for seven declared in their first innings. Australia were forced to follow-on after being dismissed for 300 and made six without loss in their second innings.
The final pitch inspection proved a low-key end to India’s maiden Test series win in Australia, arguably the greatest achievement of Virat Kohli’s captaincy.
It was the third consecutive day in Sydney that was affected by either bad light or rain but that didn’t stop a loud group of India’s fans cheering, dancing, waving flags and singing in the rain for much of the morning session.
Kohli and teammates celebrated by thanking supporters who had stuck around despite the showers.
Australia, asked to follow on after conceding a first innings lead of 322 runs on day four, finished 6-0 in their second innings.
India, having failed to win a Test series in Australia in 11 previous attempts, ended a slump that dates back to when they were crushed by Don Bradman’s side in 1948.
The tourists, led by magnificent series from batting rock Cheteshwar Pujara and superb slinger Jasprit Bumrah, achieved it in clinical fashion to expose the immense void left by Steve Smith and David Warner’s suspensions and raise questions about the potency of Australia’s attack.
Kohli’s team banked wins in Adelaide and Melbourne to take an unassailable 2-1 series lead and retain the Border-Gavaskar trophy, while they took control of the final Test by amassing 7(dec)-622 after winning the toss.
“We’ve been outplayed in some areas,” Tim Paine conceded to Fox Cricket prior to the start of play on Monday.
It’s been a hard-fought series and they deserve to take home the trophy.
“We’ve got to try and look at the positives.”
The two sides now play a five match one day series before India, who’re the top ranked one day side in the world, head to New Zealand for a five match series against the Black Caps.