Home » Cricket » All members of India’s playing XI achieve unique first as India beat Australia by 8 wickets in Melbourne – cricket

All members of India’s playing XI achieve unique first as India beat Australia by 8 wickets in Melbourne – cricket

All members of the current Ajinkya Rahane-led Indian team achieved a unique first as India beat Australia by 8 wickets on Day 4 of the Boxing Day Test at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on Tuesday. With the win India also drew level (1-1) in the four-match Border-Gavaskar trophy.

All 11 Indian players playing in this Test match registered their first win while chasing away from home. The last time India had won a Test while chasing away from home was against Sri Lanka in Colombo in back in 2010, meaning this was also India’s first Test win while chasing away from home in this decade. Barring Cheteshwar Pujara and Wriddhiman Saha ( not in the XI) had made their Test debuts before 2010 in this current Indian side.

Interestingly regular Virat Kohli, who is on paternity leave, is yet to win a Test while chasing away from home.

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Before this Test, India had lost 14 and drawn 5 while chasing a target in 4th innings of a Test match outside India.

This was India’s first win while chasing in Australia after 17 years. The last time India won a Test match in Australia while chasing a target in 4th innings was in 2003 at Adelaide.

The last time a visiting team won a Test match after successfully chasing a target in 4th innings at MCG was in 2008 by South Africa.

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India gave themselves a target of 70 after bowling Australia out for 200 in the first session of Day 4. They lost two early wickets in the form of Mayank Agarwal and Cheteshwar Pujara but stand-in captain Ajinkya Rahane and debutant Shubman Gill took India home with 8 wickets in hand.

Rahane, who scored a superb 112 in the first innings, remained on 27 while debutant Shubman Gill played some fantastic strokes to remain unbeaten on 35.

The hosts resumed at 133 for six on day four with Cameron Green on 17 and Pat Cummins 15, ahead by just two runs as they battled to stay in the match at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.

They frustrated India’s depleted attack for more than an hour before losing Pat Cummins (22), batting all-rounder Cameron Green (45) and Nathan Lyon (3).

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With nine wickets down, lunch was delayed by half-an-hour, with Josh Hazlewood the last man to fall, bowled by Ravi Ashwin for 10 leaving Mitchell Starc unbeaten on 14.

Debutant Mohammed Siraj took 3-37 with Jasprit Bumrah, Ravindra Jadeja and Ashwin grabbing two each.

Cummins survived on 15, when an edge from Bumrah fell just short of Cheteshwar Pujara standing deep at slip, and again on 19 when he came out on top of an lbw review decision.

But when Bumrah took the new ball and found more swing and bounce he finally fell, gloving a rising delivery to Mayank Agarwal to end a battling 57-run partnership with Green.

At the other end the technically sound Green picked his moments, cutting Ashwin and driving Bumrah beautifully for fours, before reverting to blocking.

But the tall all-rounder, in only his second Test, was undone by Siraj, caught by Jadeja as looked to find the boundary with a pull shot, ending a 146-ball stay.

Starc had a let-off on nine when he was on his way back to the pavilion after being given out lbw, only for a review to give him the all clear.

Lyon lasted 15 balls before being caught behind off Siraj, with Starc and Hazlewood adding a final 15 runs.

Australia’s hopes rested with the tailenders after their brittle top order failed to fire.

Opener Joe Burns again flopped, out for four, to put his place in the team for the third Test next week at serious risk, while Travis Head (17) also disappointed and Steve Smith’s poor run continued, gone for eight.

Their troubles came despite India being a bowler down following Umesh Yadav’s calf strain on Monday, a further setback for a team already missing injured regulars Mohammed Shami and Ishant Sharma.

Australia won the first Test in Adelaide by eight wickets.

(With agency inputs)

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