KL Rahul fifty helps India rout Australia, win back Border-Gavaskar Trophy
KL Rahul was once again among runs as India defeated Australia in Dharamsala to clinch the Border-Gavaskar Trophy.cricket Updated: Mar 28, 2017 11:49 IST
KL Rahul slammed his sixth fifty in seven innings while Ajinkya Rahane smashed an unbeaten 27-ball 38 as India ended their dominant season on a high by registering an eight-wicket win over Australia in Dharamsala. (LIVE BLOG)
Thanks to the victory, India also clinched the four-Test series 2-1 at the HPCA stadium on Tuesday to reclaim the Border-Gavaskar Trophy. The result also means that India now hold series wins against all Test teams at the same time. (SCORECARD)
The eight-wicket win not only ensured that the Border-Gavaskar Trophy was coming back to India, but it also stamped their season of dominance in which they played 13 Tests and won 10, drawing two and losing only one. For Australia, a chance to win a series in India for the first time after 13 years was thwarted after they collapsed to 137 all out on the third day.
Resuming at 19/0, Rahul looked in great touch while Murali Vijay was struggling to come to grips with a pitch that still had some movement and extra bounce. Vijay survived two close LBW appeals from Josh Hazlewood in the first over of the day but Rahul eased the nerves by hitting a couple of boundaries.
Hazlewood continued to probe away but Australia missed a chance in Pat Cummins’ first over. The pacer hurled a bouncer on the leg side and Vijay let it go. The ball kissed the glove on the way to wicketkeeper Matthew Wade but Australia did not appeal.
However, the bowler had his revenge as he forced Vijay (8) to edge a legcutter to Wade. Australia had a glimmer of hope when they removed Cheteshwar Pujara for 0. The batsman looked for a quick single to point but there was some hesitation, Glenn Maxwell swooped in and scored a direct hit at the bowler’s end.
Ajinkya Rahane, the Indian skipper, came out with an aggressive intent. He got going with two boundaries off Cummins but following the drinks break, Rahane stepped up a gear as he slammed two consecutive sixes off the pacer, one over deep mid wicket and one over deep extra cover.
The partnership went past fifty. Fittingly, Rahul went past his landmark and sealed the victory for India when he flicked Steve O’Keefe to deep mid wicket. The joy in the Indian team sumnmed up the feeling in a season where they have dominated.
First Published: Mar 28, 2017 11:06 IST