A truly remarkable end to a scarcely believable series. The record books will show India winning by three wickets in Brisbane and retaining the Border-Gavaskar Trophy courtesy of a 2-1 series verdict, but the bare facts tell none of the story.
This was a win for the ages by India, one that will be trumpeted on the subcontinent as possibly their greatest in Test history. At no stage did they have anything going for them. Australia had not lost at the Gabba since 1988. India were beset by injuries. No team had scored anything like 329 to win a Test match in Brisbane. India didn’t even have to win, a draw being enough for the visitors to retain series honours as the current holders of the trophy.
But India batted to a plan on the final day of the final Test, getting home with three overs to spare to seal a triumph that will live long in the memory. India have showed immense courage and character this series, especially after being skittled for an all-time low of 36 in Adelaide, but today they portrayed a deadly intent that typifies the new India.
Cheteshwar Pujara was India’s glue on the final day, taking blow after blow in an innings of 56 that consumed 211 deliveries. It allowed the likes of Shubman Gill (91) and Rishabh Pant (89 not out) to flourish, the latter guiding the visitors home in style with a knock of equal parts composure and class.
Australia are in for some soul-searching after again failing to knock India over on the final day of a Test match. They should have done better after Adelaide, with their tails up and India’s personnel in disarray. They were held at bay in Sydney and then beaten by the better team in Brisbane. Australia played their part in a memorable series, but they were second best. India were, quite simply, breathtaking.