India needed just 87 runs to win on the fourth day and KL Rahul continued his rich vein of form to steer India in the right direction. The Australians struck twice in quick succession with the dismissals M Vijay and C Pujara to give themselves a sniff of a chance but stand-in captain A Rahane launched an aggressive counter-attack with a cameo of 38 runs of just 27 balls to take India to victory and in doing so retain the Border-Gavasakar Trophy.
The Australians will be proud of themselves as many expected a 4-0 whitewash but they fought hard right throughout all the four test matches and the loss of Mitchell Starc for the last two test matches and the form of David Warner in all four test matches significantly dented their chances of winning the series.
Australia will take away a number of positives from the series such as captain Steven’s Smith continued success against the Indians scoring 499 runs this series. M Renshaw who turned 21 during this test match has shown that he has the grit and determination to play for Australia a long time. Australia will also be pleased with the way Pat Cummins has bowled during the last two test matches and the form of both their spinners N Lyon and S O’Keefe.
India have won 11 out of the 13 home test matches, losing 1 and drawing 1 which is a great achievement for coach Anil Kumble and captain Virat Kohli. They are now the number one ranked test side in the world and have the confidence of winning against any opposition in any part of the world. They have played as a team and have responded brilliantly to adversity with just the one hiccup in Pune.
Kohli will be exceptionally proud of the way Umesh Yadav has bowled their heart out at home. The spin twins of R Jadeja and R Ashwin have bowled well in tandem and are ranked as the number 1 and number 2 bowlers in the world. Pujara has shown that he is dependable at test level and can grind the opposition out. Rahane’s place in the side was being questioned at the start of the series but he proved that not only is he dependable when the chips are down but he makes a great deputy for Kohli.
In a statement, stand-in captain A Rahane said “Really enjoyed it. Credit to all the boys. Not only this series, but to whoever has played this season. Really happy as a captain. I thought our bowlers, batsmen and fielders, they all did well.”