In Stats: India Beat Australia by 31 Runs to Win Historic Test
In a historic day for Indian cricket, Virat Kohli and co defeated Australia by 31 runs in their first Test at Adelaide, to go one up in the four-match series on Monday, 10 December.
It all went down to the wire on the final day of the series opener. After the Aussies began the fifth day of the match needing 219 runs with 6 wickets in hand, a relentless middle order batted on to reduce that figure to 137 at Lunch.
The match appeared over when Pat Cummins fell at 259 for 9, but Nathan Lyon (38*) and Josh Hazlewood defied India's flagging attack with a last-wicket partnership of 32 runs. Hazlewood (13) was caught at first slip off Ashwin, sparking jubilation from India's players.
In fact, this was the only time in Test history that a team batting in the fourth innings had a partnership of 15 runs or more for each of the ten wickets.
Australia, chasing a total of 322, were eventually bowled out for 291 as the Men in Blue registered their first-ever victory in a opening match of a Test series Down Under.
This was India’s first win in Aussie land in 10 years and, the first since 2003 at the Adelaide Oval. The visitors also become the first Asian team to win a Test in Australia, England and South Africa in the same calendar year.
Player of the Match Cheteshwar Pujara was India’s highest scorer in both innings. The 30-year-old defied Australia’s bowling attack, and scored a century on the opening day of the Test while the rest of the batting line-up crumbled. In the second innings, he smashed a 71 to give India a considerable lead over the hosts, and also became only the third Indian batsman to get a 50-plus score in both innings of a Test in Australia.
Nathan Lyon was the highest wicket-taker of the match, while Indian pacer Jasprit Bumrah and spinner R Ashwin picked up six wickets each.
India will next play Australia in the second Test at Perth, starting 14 December.
Australia Fight it Out
Australia's slim chances appeared to nosedive when captain Tim Paine was dismissed on his first delivery after Lunch, throwing his wicket away with a miscued pulled shot off Bumrah. He made 41 after aggressive batting in the morning session and required treatment on his troubled right index finger.
Cummins (28) and an attacking Mitchell Starc (28) combined to frustrate India with an eighth-wicket partnership of 41 runs. Starc's breezy knock ended when he edged a wide Shami delivery to be caught behind.
Cummins batted with the concentration and application often lacking from Australia's top-order batsmen, with his 121 balls faced the second most in the innings. His innings ended when he edged Bumrah to captain Virat Kohli, who glared at the crowd after snaring the first slip catch.
Australia's main batting hopes – Shaun Marsh and Travis Head – were dismissed before lunch on the last day. Head made 14 and the under-pressure Marsh fell for 60 from 166 balls late in the session.
Ishant Sharma broke through with a sharp bouncer, hitting the shoulder of Head's bat and getting an edge to gully.
Marsh reached a half-century with a pull to the boundary off Ashwin, his first time passing 50 in the fourth innings of a Test.
India shared the wickets around in the second innings, with Ravichandran Ashwin, Jasprit Bumrit and Mohammed Shami claiming three each.
(With inputs from AP)