Australia v India, 4th Test, Adelaide, 5th day January 28, 2012

Australia wrap up 4-0 whitewash


Australia 7 for 604 dec and 5 for 167 dec beat India 272 and 201 (Sehwag 62, Lyon 4-63, Harris 3-41) by 298 runs
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

Before the Sydney Test, Glenn McGrath gave his typical prediction that Australia would win the series 4-0. Few people truly expected it to happen. But such has been the gulf between the two sides that four weeks later, Australia wrapped up a whitewash within 59 minutes on the last day at Adelaide Oval, the only Test in the series that India managed to take to a fifth day.

Australia's 298-run victory was finalised when Nathan Lyon found the edge of Umesh Yadav's bat and Brad Haddin gloved the ball cleanly, which led to celebrations from the Australians. Not wild celebrations, though. The restrained type of self-congratulation that follows a long period of work, with the knowledge that even more toil remains ahead.

That the 4-0 series win was not enough to lift Australia out of fourth position on the ICC rankings is an indication of how far the side had fallen, and how much work remains for Michael Clarke and his men. But they are the on the way up. Their next Test tour is to the West Indies in April, and there they can move up the rankings list, closer to their goal of regaining the No.1 spot.

For India, this was the culmination of a miserable year away from home. They remain in third spot on the rankings, but only just. They began the day at 6 for 166, with no hope of chasing the target of 500 or batting all day to play out the draw. The first wicket came when Ishant Sharma edged behind off Ryan Harris for 2, and that was closely followed by Wriddhiman Saha (3) also edging behind off Peter Siddle.

R Ashwin and Zaheer Khan stole a few boundaries but it was only ever a question of which bowlers would get the wickets. Zaheer skied a catch off Ben Hilfenhaus for 15 and the final wicket came when Yadav edged behind with the total on 201. That gave Lyon 4 for 63, an encouraging end to a series in which he was the least effective of Australia's four main bowlers, against batsmen adept at handling spin.

Harris ended up with 3 for 41 but it was appropriate that all four frontline bowlers, including Man of the Match Siddle, picked up at least one wicket. It has been their constant pressure throughout the summer that has kept India's powerful batting line-up in check. Significantly, it was not until the final Test of the series that India found a centurion, and then it was the newest member of the top six, Virat Kohli.

VVS Laxman averaged 19.37 for the series, Virender Sehwag averaged 24.75, Rahul Dravid 24.25, Gautam Gambhir 22.62, MS Dhoni 20.40 and Sachin Tendulkar 35.87. None of them scored as many runs as Kohli, whose 300 came at 37.50, and such results should encourage the selectors to give more opportunities to fresh batsmen.

The Indian bowlers were also below-par. Zaheer finished with 15 wickets at 31.80, a decent result and an indication that he keeps working hard even in trying circumstances, and Yadav showed promise with his 14 wickets at 39.35. But Ishant's five wickets at 90.20, Ashwin's nine victims at 62.77, and the folly of picking Vinay Kumar at the WACA all stood out as disappointments.

Hilfenhaus and Siddle headed the Australian attack throughout the series, and they were wonderful. Clarke and Ricky Ponting were outstanding with the bat. It was a complete display from an Australian unit that heading in the right direction. And a squad that can always look back on this 4-0 result with pride.

Brydon Coverdale is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. He tweets here

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Dummy4 on January 30, 2012, 11:29 GMT

    Well done.........................................................................................................................................................................

  • Dummy4 on January 29, 2012, 10:59 GMT

    @basit12 IND may be tiger against WIN,BAN & ZIM but not against SL. At the moment SL is better than IND for sure. SL lost to ENG in ENG was 0-1 only from 3 matches, but IND lost 4 out of 4 (clean sweep) against ENG in ENG recently. So SL is better than IND.

  • Dummy4 on January 29, 2012, 7:09 GMT

    Time for team india to get rid of some old stars and polish young talent.....india has yet to find a good replacement after kumble...

  • richard on January 29, 2012, 5:45 GMT

    One thing that should be looked at it is the day-to-day leadership of the team ie captain and coaching staff. MS Dohni is a worse captain than Ricky Ponting - he is unimaginative, overly defensive and doesn't seem to inspire anyone. He lets the game float away. Sehwag proved himself to be a more astute captain by bringing Ashwin in early in the Adelaide test...... then unfortunately set the same negative fields hoping a batsman will make a mistake rather than forcing a mistake. Duncan Fletcher and the Coaching staff (particularly fielding) - WTF are you doing? You have got some amazing talent in that side and it is being wasted. Someone needs to 1) pull Ishant Sharma aside and get him to bowl an extra meter fuller 2) Teach Gahmbir to play the short ball instead of running his mouth 3) Tell Yadav to keep bowling the way he is 4) Pull the whole team in to line over their pathetic fielding performances. More disciplined training will help this underperforming Indian team.

  • Anupam on January 29, 2012, 5:44 GMT

    @pak fans pak did't won test match. whenever pak won it is always written SHOCK. and dont compare pak team aginst india its like comparing KHWAJA to BRADMAN Lol (some pak fans says). still the survival of test match is depending upon 3-4 countries Oz,ENG,IND,SA or SL too. otherwise NZ,pak,BAN,ZIM,WI are resposible to make test match into extinct phase.

  • Muhammad on January 29, 2012, 4:35 GMT

    It is very depessing for team India, being a Pakistani Cricket lover, very sad after seeing such a bad performance of team India in Eng & Aus. I think when the player get older he starts playing for his on pride and records. It can be the one of reason thats why such great batsmen couldn't deliver what they need to deliver or other expecting. One of bad performance of team india i ever seen. Now you can see the team india score 8-0. Anyways good luck in ODI/T20.

  • ashantha on January 29, 2012, 3:56 GMT

    Ashwin's Bawling Average over 60, I. Sharma's Average over 90. is this a Joke ? I'll Never forget Ravi Shasthri's Face after loss.

  • Dummy4 on January 29, 2012, 3:08 GMT

    poor india cricket team............... well done australia ........

  • Dummy4 on January 29, 2012, 2:42 GMT

    Perhaps winning the World Cup was an ultimate achievement and has resulted in anticlimatic results and a lack of motivation and drive for Tendulkar, Dhoni and Sehwag. Dravid and Laxman have already outlived their cricketing utility. Examples of Saha and Kohli should serve as eye openers. You need fire in the belly which is missing in oldies. Time to blood the new trinity of Rahane, Rohit and Pujara alongwith Ashwin, Saha and Kohli and give all of them extended run for two years.

  • Dummy4 on January 29, 2012, 2:32 GMT

    I believe VVs should sacrifice by retiring other all three i.e. dravid tendulkar (even fourth sehwag) will be forced to retire.

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