The Vodafone Test Series for the Border-Gavaskar Trophy 2011/12 came to an end today with Australia whitewashing India 4-0. The fourth and final Test at the Adelaide Oval got concluded in the morning session itself today with the hosts winning by a huge margin of 298 runs. Michael Clarke was awarded the Player of the Series.
Looking at how the Test Series has gone by, we can easily find that the Indian players failed to perform to their potential while the Aussies except for the Top order batsmen did well right through the series. Of course, the exception to this is David Warner’s match-winning 180 at Perth. For the Aussies with the bat, there were two hundreds, two double centuries and even one triple century whereas the only batsman who could score a century in this Vodafone Test series was Virat Kohli! That sole century too came only in the Final Test with the series already gone. The Australian pace battery was relentless and all the quick bowlers used in the series played their role with perfection.
While we look back into the First Test which was played at the Melbourne Cricket Ground, both the Indians as well as Australians batsmen didn’t perform that well. But the Test match came to an end with a 122-run win for Australia because of a poor show from the Indian batsmen in the second innings. The Man of the Match was awarded to fast bowler James Pattinson.
Amongst the performers in the First Test, for Australia, Ed Cowan (68) and Ricky Ponting (62) scored half centuries in the first innings. Zaheer Khan for India took four wickets. For India, Virender Sehwag (67), Rahul Dravid (68) and Sachin Tendulkar (73) scored half centuries. For Australia, with the ball Ben Hilfenhaus took 5 wickets.
In the second innings of the Melbourne Test, the batsmen who got going for Australia were Ricky Ponting (60) and Michael Hussey (89) taking their team out of the woods. Umesh Yadav took 4 wickets in this innings for India. No Indian batsmen could even score a half century in the second innings and the highest score was just 32 that came from Sachin Tendulkar. James Pattinson took 4 wickets to trigger India’s collapse.
When we look into the Second Test played at the Sydney Cricket Ground early in the New Year, Australia won the match by a thumping innings and 68 runs. Michael Clarke was given the Man of the Match for his outstanding performance of scoring a career-best 329 as the Aussies piled up 659 for 4 declared in reply to India’s sorry 191 on a batting track.
Apart from Michael Clarke, Ricky Ponting (134) and Michael Hussey (150) also scored centuries. India in the second innings did slightly better but was well away from even making the Aussies bat again. Gautam Gambhir tried to get back to form and looked alright for his 83 while Sachin Tendulkar scored 80 but couldn’t convert that into that elusive 100th ton. VVS Laxman (66) and R Ashwin (62) were the other two batsmen who scores half centuries. Ben Hilfenhaus took a total of 8 wickets in the match to bowl the Australians to an innings victory.
In the Third Test which was played at the Western Australia Cricket Association Ground in Perth, Australia won by an innings and 37 runs to clinch the Border-Gavaskar Trophy with an unassailable lead of 3-0. The Test match lasted just the 2 and half days on a greenish traditionally fast and bouncy WACA pitch. David Warner was awarded the Man of the Match for his blazing 180 from just 159 balls.
India put into bat first after losing the toss was shot out for just 161 with the highest score coming from Virat Kohli which was 44. Ben Hilfenhaus took 4 wickets and Peter Siddle took three. Australia then put up 369 with David Warner scoring 180 and the other opener Ed Cowan scoring 74. A five-wicket haul from Umesh Yadav could restrict Australia from putting up a much larger first innings total.
In the second innings, the Indian batting failed and the team was in dire straits at 51 for 4 and was eventually bundled out for 171. Once again the top scorer was Virat Kohli and this time he got a confidence-boosting score of 75. Ben Hilfenhaus did the damage again taking four wickets.
The Fourth and Final Test was played at the Adelaide Oval which Australia won by 298 runs this morning. Peter Siddle was the Man of the Match for his five-wicket haul in India’s first innings. India was led by Virender Sehwag in this Test Match with MS Dhoni getting banned for slow over-rate in Perth.
Well on what was a flat batting track, Ricky Ponting and Michael Clarke batted India out of the contest with their double centuries as Australia declared at 604 for 7! India replied with just 272 with just Virat Kohli (116) coming good and becoming the only player from the Indian team to score a century in this whole Test Series. This is also a maiden Test for Virat Kohli. Peter Siddle rocked the Indian batting line-up with a sizzling 5-wicket haul.
Australia despite being in a position to enforce the follow-on decided against it to rest its pace bowlers. In the second innings, Michael Clarke declared with Australia at 167 for 5 leaving India a target of 500.
India in the run chase disappointed again and was bowled out for just 201 in 69.4 overs. Skipper Virender Sehwag was the top scorer with 62. Off Spinner Nathan Lyon was the most successful bowler for the hosts taking four wickets.