India clinched a historic drawn Test Series in South Africa by forcing a stalemate on the final day at Cape Town. Opener Gautam Gambhir battling painful blows on his body stuck at the crease for 62.3 overs to seal the deal. The left hander saw through 184 balls at his end while scoring 64 with 9 fours. It was a day when the number of balls consumed by the batsmen were more important than their runs as India was only in a position to fight for a draw.
The opening pair of Sehwag and Gambhir batted out the crucial first hour against Steyn and Morkel without losing their wickets. It was in the 12th over that SA finally got their breakthrough when Sehwag in a forward defence was forced to edge a bouncing ball from Morkel to first slip. With the exit of Sehwag (11 from 40 balls), India’s chances of going for a win in chasing 340 were gone. The visitors then batted out the rest of the first session comfortably without any further damage at 53 for 1 in 28 overs.
The second wicket partnership with Gambhir and Dravid kept things secured for the next hour after Tea and by then the writing was clear on the wall about a draw. Even when Rahul Dravid (31 from 112 balls with 4 fours) edged a bouncing ball from Tsotsobe to gully in the 49th over, India was safely through with not much of time left. Gambhir then took India to Tea with Sachin Tendulkar at 114 for 2 in 56 overs.
After Tea, it was more of formalities in the match to be completed and just the one wicket went down in 26 overs which included that of Gambhir who gloved a rising delivery from Steyn down the legside. VVS Laxman (32* from 67 balls with 4 fours) came in next and finished the stalemate with Tendulkar (14* from 91 balls) in an unbroken stand of around 22 overs. Jacques Kallis got the Man of the Match and also the Man of the Series awards.