Australia v India, 3rd Test, Perth, 4th day January 19, 2008

A great rivalry revived

It would be ridiculous to suggest that a new world order is upon us but one thing has been re-established at Perth: Australia v India is the Test rivalry of the decade
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India achieved their win through teamwork and not individual brilliance © AFP
 

Australia must wonder why they always run into India when in full flow. The same opponents had halted them in 2001 by conjuring a miracle in Kolkata; now they have done one better by overwhelming them at the bastion of Australian supremacy. Perth didn't quite live up to the hype, but it was still the paciest, bounciest track the Indians have experienced this summer and it is likely to remain so.

More significantly, though, after a blip in Melbourne, a great rivalry has been restored to health. Just over four years ago India had taken a Test off Australia in Adelaide and now they have done it again. It would be ridiculous to suggest that a new world order is upon us but one thing has been re-established: Australia v India is the Test rivalry of the decade. England popped up spectacularly in 2005 but only India have been able to match, fight and beat Australia over a sustained period.

Since India's disastrous tour in 1991-92, the teams have met 21 times in Test cricket; the numbers now stand at 10-8 in Australia's favour. In the corresponding period Australia's record stands at 27-9 against England, 12-2 against Pakistan, 15-4 against South Africa and 9-1 against Sri Lanka. And India were the last team to humble Australia in a home Test.

Till 2001, contests between India and Australia followed a familiar pattern: India were hopeless in Australia and Australia could never beat India in India. Steve Waugh's team, though it lost that great series, actually started the change - Australia were two wicket-taking balls away from winning the series - and Sourav Ganguly's Indians continued it during a magnificently competitive series in 2003-04.

There was a real danger of this series ending as a washout. A less resilient side would have been shattered by the heartbreaking last-minute loss at Sydney, and the other distractions it brought. India are fortunate to have a man of Anil Kumble's resolve and calm, and a bunch of steely senior players in the dressing room. Instead of licking their wounds when they retreated to Canberra after the stand-off, they renewed their spirit to fight on and found the calm to be able to do so. Kumble spoke after the win about the special bond within the team and this is as united a team as India have ever been.

Kumble had no hesitation in ranking this win the greatest of his career and he is hardly off the mark. The good thing about this Indian side is that the wins have been getting better and better. Adelaide in 2003 was special because no one had given them a chance of competing against Australia before the series and, more so, because they were 85 for 4 in the first innings chasing 556. Like Kolkata, it had a touch of the miraculous to it. And of course, Australia had contributed to their defeat by some reckless batting.

Not so here. This was a Test in which India looked Australia in the eye from the first session and never blinked. Apart from batting and bowling better than their opponents, they even caught more safely. Sachin Tendulkar and Rahul Dravid showed what difference technique can make by batting through a challenging period when Brett Lee and Stuart Clark were at their best on the first day; when they failed in the second innings VVS Laxman stood up. Virender Sehwag's two wickets in successive overs hastened India's win but his contribution with the bat was equally vital. He got India off to quick starts in both innings and in fact had looked to have regained his form in the second innings. Mahendra Singh Dhoni is still far from his booming best but this is his first tour of Australia and his restrained 38 in the second innings saved India from a collapse.

 
 
This was a Test India dominated pretty much throughout. Apart from batting and bowling better than their opponents, they caught more safely
 

But the bowlers won India the match and, staggeringly, they outbowled their rivals. Even more staggeringly the bowling line-up, had injury not intervened, would have read Zaheer Khan, Sreesanth and Munaf Patel. Rarely has the gap between expectation and delivery been so huge in a positive sense. Even though Perth was expected to deliver pace and bounce, the Indians always knew they had to do it with swing and, irrespective of what the pitch did, they were prepared to throw it up.

Teamwork has been a feature of India's recent wins and, as in Trent Bridge and Delhi, there were no singular performances here. Wasim Jaffer and Sourav Ganguly were the only failures of the match, and even Jaffer played his part in the first innings. It's a sign of strength and a healthy departure from the not-so-distant past when they were over-reliant on individual brilliance.

The result in Perth was also a victory for world cricket and there were few Australian journalists in the press box who were not alive to the fact; they were even prepared to rejoice over it. Australia's dominance has been boring and unhealthy and, even though this is not a sign of a decline, to see them challenged itself is uplifting.

The Australian season began in misery with Sri Lanka belying their promise. Now, Test cricket is alive again. The trophy has been won but there is a series that can be shared. Adelaide is a salivating prospect.

Sambit Bal is the editor of Cricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • crankypet on January 20, 2008, 12:13 GMT

    The constant theme here has been that India is challenging Australia with the 10-8 margin constantly being quoted and that India are surging. Trouble is they typically lift their game for an occasion and then fall right away against other opposition. Australia on the other hand have only dropped an occasional game and with the exception of England in 2005 when the series has already been one (INCLUDING THIS ONE!) India have not managed to string more than 6 wins in a row in their history. When India can win maybe 8 games to be even halfway compared to the Australian team, then start dancing. India have one win and the reaction is just as hysterical as the losses in Melbourne and Sydney. Get some perspective.

    http://stats.cricinfo.com/statsguru/engine/stats/index.html?class=1;result=1;result=2;result=3;result=4;spanmax1=20+Jan+2008;spanmin1=20+Jan+1998;spanval1=span;template=results;type=team

  • Tricky_Ponting on January 20, 2008, 11:02 GMT

    Dear Poppy-corn,I totally agree with you. Australia is very dignified while playing as was shown in sydney by myself and my skipper-to-be puppy-clarke. We both rubbed the ball cleanly on earth before appealing for the catches. And our mates i.e. blind-bat *ucknor and benson were so unbiased that they gave it out only once, i.e. only for puppy's catch and not for my catch, so this is what we mean when we say it "even out". Even out in oz's language means when we appeal for two wrong reasons, one appeal should go in our favour. In sydney, our third umpire from australia broke all reacords of unbiased decisions and gave Symo not-out, even when whole world watches it in replays that symo was out stumped. This is called un-biased decisions because the third umpire was un-biased of every other human beings thoughts and visions. In sydney, we only got 14 umpiring un-biased decisions on our favour and indians got 2, and they were so undignified to complain about it.

  • jarydd on January 20, 2008, 10:18 GMT

    Does anybody seriously believe that this single loss signifies the end of an era. Let us not forget that India drew the series in 2003-04 yet Australia (apart from Ashes 05) continued their dominance. Everybody wants Australia to lose so badly, that they are blind to the fact that they are contributing to the enourmous hunger for success this Australian side has.

    By the way, the twelfth man running on to the field with the flag after winning a test? No one considers this over the top do they? Hypocrites.

  • Johnerly on January 20, 2008, 9:35 GMT

    Finally a real contest. India played to their undoubted potential and Australia had an off day at the office. No excuses, that is what cricket is all about.

    Adelaide promises to be a cracker.

  • Mannu_Oct27 on January 20, 2008, 9:28 GMT

    Indians were really fighting hard to pocket a win against Australia and the green baggies were fighting to avoid a loss till the end. Great Cricketting stuff from both teams! Now,not only Pakistan is a great rival for India but also the Aussies.. I think the one day seires ahead will have breath taking stuff, especially when sreesanth is back in the side.He really brings the ground alive :)

  • JB77 on January 20, 2008, 9:10 GMT

    Congrats to the Indian cricket team for the ourstanding cricket played. As an Aussie it was a hard test to watch at times, but it was exciting. Great work. However, to those fans and journalists who are proclaiming this Indian victory as "the end of an Australian era", I have two words: "Ashes 2005" Back then, England beat us in a series (not just a single game) and proclaimed themselves the new leaders in world cricket. I think we all know what happened next....

  • Adrian21 on January 20, 2008, 8:10 GMT

    I like Kunashah's comment. Yep, it was a great Test, and it was good to see Australia challenged at last. What I didn't like was the hysteria which greeted a couple of umpiring mistakes in Sydney. Umpires are human; Bucknor has been one of the best umpires for years, and should have been allowed to retire with grace.We just have to accept mistakes - they've been part of cricket forever. Have you ever tried to actually umpire? I've found it hard - trying to do so with hawk-eye examining your every move must be terrifying. If Indian fans scream 'cheats' and burn effigies every time they lose (combined with their growing control of the purse-strings) we'll never have an level playing ground.

    For now though, well done Anil Kumble, and it was such a joy to see those batsmen of yours in full flight. Let's keep up the rivalry between our two great nations, but let's not get hysterical about it.

  • GothicFox on January 20, 2008, 8:02 GMT

    though one may be critical of Asad Rauf's LBW decisions in this game (Tendulkar and Dhoni in Indias's innings and Hussey in Aussies innings) it must be noted that he has been consistent with his decisions. Even though hawk eye showed that the ball was heading over the stumps, when he felt he was out, he gave it out....The fact that he was consistent when either team was batting evened things out when one considers the bigger picture

  • Ckt_Lover on January 20, 2008, 6:07 GMT

    Kudos to both teams.India,for bouncing back in the series strongly,the way they dominated through all 4days of the test against top opposition,and winning quite convincingly in the end.Australia,for their ever positive and attacking approach to the game even in the face of defeat,the way they fought till the end,and for accepting defeat gracefully like champions.I hope Adelaide is fought with ultimate hunger from both teams.No doubt Australia will be hungry.Defeat is the ultimate appetizer,more so for champion sides who've not tasted many.With Hayden back in the side and the bowling confusion sorted,Australia will resurge.Even the best of Indian teams from the past generally had two pblms - inability to sustain hunger and consistency,and the lack of killer instinct when having the oppnent flat on the mat.But something tells me,this youthful Indian side,under an ambitious experienced captain like Kumble can do a lot of things differently.As Sambit put it,Adelaide indeed is salivating.

  • cricket_pundit on January 20, 2008, 5:22 GMT

    The real moment of victory,good batting and superb bowling by Indians,Aussies were seen under pressure while feilding they dropped some catches,openers were dismissed early and wickets were falling at good intervals,The back of Pathan and Ishant is a good prospect,RP is continuing his form,Inclusion of Sehwag is crucial,a blazing start had taken Aussies bowlers on defensive approach.Overall a good VICTORY and point had proven.

  • crankypet on January 20, 2008, 12:13 GMT

    The constant theme here has been that India is challenging Australia with the 10-8 margin constantly being quoted and that India are surging. Trouble is they typically lift their game for an occasion and then fall right away against other opposition. Australia on the other hand have only dropped an occasional game and with the exception of England in 2005 when the series has already been one (INCLUDING THIS ONE!) India have not managed to string more than 6 wins in a row in their history. When India can win maybe 8 games to be even halfway compared to the Australian team, then start dancing. India have one win and the reaction is just as hysterical as the losses in Melbourne and Sydney. Get some perspective.

    http://stats.cricinfo.com/statsguru/engine/stats/index.html?class=1;result=1;result=2;result=3;result=4;spanmax1=20+Jan+2008;spanmin1=20+Jan+1998;spanval1=span;template=results;type=team

  • Tricky_Ponting on January 20, 2008, 11:02 GMT

    Dear Poppy-corn,I totally agree with you. Australia is very dignified while playing as was shown in sydney by myself and my skipper-to-be puppy-clarke. We both rubbed the ball cleanly on earth before appealing for the catches. And our mates i.e. blind-bat *ucknor and benson were so unbiased that they gave it out only once, i.e. only for puppy's catch and not for my catch, so this is what we mean when we say it "even out". Even out in oz's language means when we appeal for two wrong reasons, one appeal should go in our favour. In sydney, our third umpire from australia broke all reacords of unbiased decisions and gave Symo not-out, even when whole world watches it in replays that symo was out stumped. This is called un-biased decisions because the third umpire was un-biased of every other human beings thoughts and visions. In sydney, we only got 14 umpiring un-biased decisions on our favour and indians got 2, and they were so undignified to complain about it.

  • jarydd on January 20, 2008, 10:18 GMT

    Does anybody seriously believe that this single loss signifies the end of an era. Let us not forget that India drew the series in 2003-04 yet Australia (apart from Ashes 05) continued their dominance. Everybody wants Australia to lose so badly, that they are blind to the fact that they are contributing to the enourmous hunger for success this Australian side has.

    By the way, the twelfth man running on to the field with the flag after winning a test? No one considers this over the top do they? Hypocrites.

  • Johnerly on January 20, 2008, 9:35 GMT

    Finally a real contest. India played to their undoubted potential and Australia had an off day at the office. No excuses, that is what cricket is all about.

    Adelaide promises to be a cracker.

  • Mannu_Oct27 on January 20, 2008, 9:28 GMT

    Indians were really fighting hard to pocket a win against Australia and the green baggies were fighting to avoid a loss till the end. Great Cricketting stuff from both teams! Now,not only Pakistan is a great rival for India but also the Aussies.. I think the one day seires ahead will have breath taking stuff, especially when sreesanth is back in the side.He really brings the ground alive :)

  • JB77 on January 20, 2008, 9:10 GMT

    Congrats to the Indian cricket team for the ourstanding cricket played. As an Aussie it was a hard test to watch at times, but it was exciting. Great work. However, to those fans and journalists who are proclaiming this Indian victory as "the end of an Australian era", I have two words: "Ashes 2005" Back then, England beat us in a series (not just a single game) and proclaimed themselves the new leaders in world cricket. I think we all know what happened next....

  • Adrian21 on January 20, 2008, 8:10 GMT

    I like Kunashah's comment. Yep, it was a great Test, and it was good to see Australia challenged at last. What I didn't like was the hysteria which greeted a couple of umpiring mistakes in Sydney. Umpires are human; Bucknor has been one of the best umpires for years, and should have been allowed to retire with grace.We just have to accept mistakes - they've been part of cricket forever. Have you ever tried to actually umpire? I've found it hard - trying to do so with hawk-eye examining your every move must be terrifying. If Indian fans scream 'cheats' and burn effigies every time they lose (combined with their growing control of the purse-strings) we'll never have an level playing ground.

    For now though, well done Anil Kumble, and it was such a joy to see those batsmen of yours in full flight. Let's keep up the rivalry between our two great nations, but let's not get hysterical about it.

  • GothicFox on January 20, 2008, 8:02 GMT

    though one may be critical of Asad Rauf's LBW decisions in this game (Tendulkar and Dhoni in Indias's innings and Hussey in Aussies innings) it must be noted that he has been consistent with his decisions. Even though hawk eye showed that the ball was heading over the stumps, when he felt he was out, he gave it out....The fact that he was consistent when either team was batting evened things out when one considers the bigger picture

  • Ckt_Lover on January 20, 2008, 6:07 GMT

    Kudos to both teams.India,for bouncing back in the series strongly,the way they dominated through all 4days of the test against top opposition,and winning quite convincingly in the end.Australia,for their ever positive and attacking approach to the game even in the face of defeat,the way they fought till the end,and for accepting defeat gracefully like champions.I hope Adelaide is fought with ultimate hunger from both teams.No doubt Australia will be hungry.Defeat is the ultimate appetizer,more so for champion sides who've not tasted many.With Hayden back in the side and the bowling confusion sorted,Australia will resurge.Even the best of Indian teams from the past generally had two pblms - inability to sustain hunger and consistency,and the lack of killer instinct when having the oppnent flat on the mat.But something tells me,this youthful Indian side,under an ambitious experienced captain like Kumble can do a lot of things differently.As Sambit put it,Adelaide indeed is salivating.

  • cricket_pundit on January 20, 2008, 5:22 GMT

    The real moment of victory,good batting and superb bowling by Indians,Aussies were seen under pressure while feilding they dropped some catches,openers were dismissed early and wickets were falling at good intervals,The back of Pathan and Ishant is a good prospect,RP is continuing his form,Inclusion of Sehwag is crucial,a blazing start had taken Aussies bowlers on defensive approach.Overall a good VICTORY and point had proven.

  • Bhanot on January 20, 2008, 5:07 GMT

    Hail the heroes. Truly a Great victory by India.All the pre match hype about the pitch and aussies four-pronged pace attack came as a cropper.It was a total team effort, everybody played their part and most of the credit should go to Kumble for the way he handled the team as a unit.Not many gave him a chance before this series and certainly not before this match. But he showed what a Fine leader he is. India let only the Cricket and the Performance do the talking for them. Keep up the good work.

  • Chittoo on January 20, 2008, 4:57 GMT

    It is interesting to note that the Indian team's recent performances have been good without a regular coach. One wonders whether the good performance is despite the absence of a coach or because of it. Perhaps the Indian team responds better to a single power centre in the dressing room rather than two power centres--a captain and a coach. Maybe, the presence of some great senior cricketers mean that there is a lot of collective wisdom in the dressing room and unless there a mechanism to ensure this is properly harnessed, team spirit drops and performance drops. A Captain who enjoys the respect and support of the seniors and can negotiate his way is more effective than when a coach is added to the equation and makes the negotiation more complicated.

  • kr_kinshuk on January 20, 2008, 4:49 GMT

    the umpiring has been questionable in both the games at sydney and at perth....

    the difference being that while in sydney, the decisions were overwhelmingly in favour of the aussies, here in perth, it was much more "even"......nd in sydney, the contentious ones were stumpings nd catches, in perth, it was lbw's (which r subjective decisions)....

    however, i still hope tht the icc gets this right somehow.... b'coz i think tht it doesn't even out as so many of u hv said....

    btw, thnx to the sydney controversy, aussies hv been much better behaved in this game..... (i wonder if tht also has contributed to the defeat!!! ;-))

  • Soumit on January 20, 2008, 4:40 GMT

    You said "a bowling line up would have read zaheer, sreesanth and munaf." I would just like to correct you and say the line up would have read zaheer, sreesanth and rp singh. If by any incomprehensible chance it munaf had to play and a fit rp sat out, captain, senior players and the backroom staff would have to be seriously questioned about their cricket smarts!!!!

  • VivH on January 20, 2008, 3:51 GMT

    Please popcorn, Dont even compare the Sydney test with Perth. For the record, Dhoni and Sachin too were given out for not so great umpiring. They were playing good at theat point in time. Ishant was denied Ponting's wicket atleast once in second innings. On the other hand, aussie team rode their luck all the way in Sydney. Nevertheless, they (esp. Clarke, Johnson and Clark) played a wonderful knock reminding me of Ashes 05.

  • CGopinath6 on January 20, 2008, 3:22 GMT

    This is a wonderful win for India. BCCI now should consider developing bouncier pitches in India for domestic matches, so that many young fast bowlers could emerge. Lot of bowlers mainly seam bowlers could be identified easily from the domestic season and could very well be handpicked and trained in MRF pace foundation. What India hasn't got now. They got good bunch of players, good coach, good captain. The only part that is bit shaky is the selection team itself. If they provide good set of players as the coach wants, India can very well challenge any cricket nation in the worl at their home.

  • Matty_84 on January 20, 2008, 2:57 GMT

    Fantasic cricket by the Indians and especially Kumble in captaincy. However, does one victory spell the end of an Australian dynasty or make India world champs? Don't think so, consistency is the key. That type of overreaction/overstatement is akin to burning an effigy in the streets...

  • blogking on January 20, 2008, 2:20 GMT

    I wish Kumble would have come earlier as a captain, but better late than never. He understands his bowlers really well.

  • ExCric on January 20, 2008, 2:07 GMT

    It is good India has won and the rivalry is alive and kicking. However, we must remember that Jaffer has not contributed anything substantial in 6 innings, fielding needs to be improved[Symonds dropped catch in first innings], and also the failure of senior batters in second innings. In fact tendulkar's seccond innings average against Australia is way below 20. India must work on these issues to make sure these ghosts that are currently hidden do not resurface with a vengeance at Adelaide. As for aussies who claim that they had bad decisions and hence lost, that is rubbish. India can also claim that if tendulkar was not given out lbw in the first innings he would have gone on to score 200 and dhoni another hundred. Besides lbw decisions are always contentious, this was unlike in sydney where clear caught behinds and stumpings were not given when India fielded and, grassed /no bat catches were given when India batted . India outplayed Australia in Perth and deserved this vistory.

  • japaljarri on January 20, 2008, 1:32 GMT

    Excellent response from India. Well played and great for the game. Huge test for the Aussies in Adelaide.

  • Adrian21 on January 20, 2008, 1:23 GMT

    Oh my god! We lost! Quick - burn the umpires in effigy! Call them cheats! Call them monkeys! Pick up our bats and balls and threaten to go home! Threaten to withdraw out money! Riot in the streets!

    Okay, I'm joking. We lost in Perth, fair and square. We were beaten by a great side. The umpires made a few mistakes - they always do. They did in Sydney too.

    But until the Indian supporters learn to react with similar maturity, they'll never have my respect.

  • rameshnsn on January 20, 2008, 1:19 GMT

    Kudos to the Indian team who stopped the undisputed test champions in their own den.I hope they will do it again in the next week. India shouldnt be complacent for the final test match at Adelaide. India should be aggressive right from the first ball. I hope they add harbajan to the spin attack.

  • Squizza on January 20, 2008, 1:13 GMT

    In response to popcorns message, I would love to see the evidence that supports the "inside edge" for the Symonds dismissal. Watching the match on TV I am used to watch plenty of replays which may suggest the umpire got it wrong, certinaly there were probably 30 replays of Husseys LBW which looked very dodgy live, but looked very good once replayed, but my initial instincts were right, it ws heading over the top (Hawk eyes prediction anyway). But when it came to Symonds, the commentators were clearly heard saying something along the lines of...this is close, yes its out. Then all of a sudden they changed their mind that Symonds had infact got an inside edge. I awaited eargly for the replays that would support their theories, there were 3 replays, of which none could conclusivly show Symonds getting an inside edge. Billy got that one right!!

  • dicksta on January 20, 2008, 0:58 GMT

    great win india.hard fought and never let australia claw their way back into the game - but please stop going on about sydnesy - you have to take the good with the bad - in this test australia got on the wrong side of the decisions - but this is cricket - we move on a look forward to the next battle, not backward and lament

  • J_Vengeance on January 20, 2008, 0:45 GMT

    Wow there are plenty of those dellusional folk out there, claiming this series to have created some of the best test matches in a decade, and created a great rivalry. But I say who cares, everyone complains about how Australians are bully's on the field of play, while everyone turns a blind eye to how the Indians are bully's off the field of play. Whilst holding the ICC to ransom with your threats, i find it weak and manipulative. So please people of India and their supporters, stop pointing the finger at us, we earn our respect on the field by being the best cricket team over the past decade and probably longer, not buy using our political stranglehold of the ICC.

    Put it in perspective 20 million vs a 1 billion... now do the maths...

  • pete_mac on January 20, 2008, 0:44 GMT

    Full credit to India who certainly played MUCH better than their previous two outings and were deserved winners. However, Australia certainly suffered from some poor umpiring decisions at crucial times in this match(much like India did in the Sydney test). Cricket is a great leveller and more often than not things have a way of evening themselves out, so hopefully this will serve to alleviate some of the 'hard done by' sentiments resulting from the Sydney test.

  • CricketCrazy19 on January 20, 2008, 0:29 GMT

    Once again august indians thwart autralia's winning march. India's recent cricketing success may it be twenty20 world cup or perth test shows that it's a very mature cricket team, and the team which doesn't rely only on individual performances to win a match. If india continue to do so, the days are not far when it'll replace australia to dominate cricket on all fronts.

  • Vass on January 20, 2008, 0:23 GMT

    It was great to watch a hard fought Test match series involving Australia. Undoubtedly, Australia is a far more professional, consistent and successful team of the modern era and as a result their victories have been mostly one-sided. But it seems that unlike other national teams the Indians somehow manage to raise their game to be competitive enough when they play the Aussies. No offence to the two great players, but I think it is time the authorities reconsidered the title 'Border-Gavaskar-Trophy' to something more fitting: 'The Fire' may be??? I think it would better capture the mood in the respective camps at least.....

  • Howler on January 20, 2008, 0:00 GMT

    Congrats to India - a deserved victory, but no more so than Australia's in the last two tests. The rub of the green went India's way this time - good luck to them. They played more agressively and Australia were more subdued - probably due to the unfair critisism received in the last week or so. As popcorm said, I'm, glad Australia didn't carry on about poor decision as India and others did in the last test!

    Bring on the fourth test and a victory to the Aussies - to prove we are the best!!

  • SanjivSanjiv on January 19, 2008, 23:55 GMT

    Congrats and well done Anil and Team India. You have made us proud. Good wishes and best of luck for the Adelaide test. Australia is going to come back hard, so keep the intesity up. Sanjiv Gupta Perth Australia

  • kreagh on January 19, 2008, 23:44 GMT

    I hope there are a lot more exciting test matches between Australia and India. I was on the edge of my seat when Johnson and Clark were bashing 4s and 6s all over the place. What a game! Hope both teams pull off something special in Adelaide too.

    To popcorn, Incorrect decisions were also given to Tendulkar and Dhoni in the first innings. Ponting also left one that looked like it was going on to hit the stumps. India didn't complain either. What's your point?

  • sirhc8 on January 19, 2008, 23:39 GMT

    India outplayed Australia in every innings of this test match. What this test does demonstrate however, is the pure stupidity, or lack of true cricket experience, that so many, including so many journalists, exhibited after the Sydney test. The umpiring in this test was probably as bad as in the Sydney test, and it went against Australia this time where in Sydney it went against India. There were probably just as many bad decisions, just not as glaring. That's cricket. The hoopla after Sydney and the action of the Indian Board was, and remains, deplorable. I can't fault the action of the Indian team however, or their superior performance in this test.

  • bijupaulose on January 19, 2008, 22:58 GMT

    First upall, Congratulations to Team India. It is a wonderful achievement. Ever memorable. The full credit to Anil Kuble and his team. But dont forget the two important thing. The absence of Mathew Hayden and the presence or Virender Sehwag. The mere presence of Mathew Hayden, the elegant, mighty left handed batsman, is more than enough to loose the concentration of any bouler. He was missing from the Australian side. At the same time, fearless, classy right handed batsman - Virender Sehwag was there to give the much needed foundation for India. For me, these Absence and Presence was the main difference between these two teams - India and Australia. Once again, Congratulations to Team India.

  • fairness on January 19, 2008, 22:51 GMT

    continued from previous post,

    even 19 year old rookies can put veterans to their place and cricket will prove superior to geography and players. To their credit, Australian public overwhelmingly discredited Australian Cricket team's behavior and winning methods. They made it obvious, hopefully, that all they want is decent cricket and not corporate mentality and collusion. Same judgements will emerge for those cricketing bodies, media and players that take a path to emulate Australian ways!

    ICC must restrain the use of technology in the criket field and the use of information derived from covereage that often results in unfair advantages. Cricket is well and truely alive among cricket lovers worldwide and great rivalries will continue to blossom if only the game can be played in its true spirit and not as another boring corporate venture.

    Thanks, Slowing Dolphin

  • dilvala on January 19, 2008, 22:49 GMT

    "even Jaffer played his part in the first innings. "

    did we both see the same game? As i see it Jaffer needs to be on the first flight back home. 6 innings and nothing to so for, i do understand he was in form when the series started, heck the at least 2 bowlers on each side have done better through out the series.

    just my 2 cents

  • fairness on January 19, 2008, 22:41 GMT

    Congratulations India!

    It is sad that rivalries have to be revived! I am sure a few other world teams can pose simillar rivalry to Australia and yet, going by the records, it never happened in the last decade or so. I believe that great cricketing spirit was choked by an unholy alliance that developed in Australia among cricketing bodies, television companies and some cricketers over the years and their collective visions were no different to the mean corporates of the world. Building corporate wealth out of sustained australian cricket dominance was the strategy that resulted in "must win at all costs".Visual technology was exploited for intelligence, fancy terms like "mental disintegration" gave legitimacy to thuggery and mafia behavior, Gentlemen australian were repeatedly ignored in preference to so called "hard nosed" cricketers and media became a tool for disinformation, all this choking cricketing rivalries!! Take some of this away, rivalries will get revived and (continued..

  • kunushah on January 19, 2008, 22:40 GMT

    Congratulations to India. This team has acheived a lot in the last few years- especially test and series wins against almost all countries -playing away from home. Its nice to know that they have a 8-10 record against Australia, specially when compared to the records of the other countries. Australia on their part showed why they are the champions - fighting the way they did today. I beleive they just had the one off day when their batting collapsed or the Indians got on top of them- but they kept fighting till the very end. Its a great rivalry - one which I hope continues over the years- one which I hope has lesser controversies and more exciting contests between bat and ball- like the one between Ishant and Ponting today- brilliant! India, Australia - please keep giving us cricket fans cracking cricket matches!

  • seeljpaat on January 19, 2008, 22:37 GMT

    Luck isn't good enough to beat the OZs. Only a skipper who thinks one step ahead from Ponting can out class the Australians. That's exactly what Kumble and his men encompassed. Not only they prevented them from getting a world record but they also proved to the whole world that if cricket was played in the right spirit in Sydney, India would be heading into Adelaide for a series win. It's heartrending that cricket wasn't the winner in Sydney but I am pleased that ICC has resolved that. I believe that test cricket has moved to another height after the Perth test. Good on the Indians & the Australians for making it happen.

  • Bobby_Talyarkhan on January 19, 2008, 22:04 GMT

    Lbw decisions are always marginal and rely on giving batsmen the benefit of the doubt (or not). They cannot be compared to giving batsmen who have not nicked the ball out caught behind. Tendulkar also received an unlucky lbw decision in the first innings.

    Yes popcorn - it was dignified of the Australians not to make excuses for their comprehensive defeat - unfortunately the same cannot be said about you.

  • strat_chili on January 19, 2008, 21:51 GMT

    Congratulations India, full credit to the steely resolve they have shown this match. They have shown the world that our Australian team are humans. They out bowled out batted out fielded and out thought Australia in this match. Although here again we have seen some poor umpiring, Chris Rogers lbw in the first innings was pathetic, Michael Hussey in the second was not the best, and Andrew Symonds in the second (although some would say KARMA), but us Aussies wont cry over that. We realise that we have witnessed a great game of cricket. Adelaide has been kind to India, although i dont think Australia will make poor selection like Perth. The next match will prove just how good this Indian side is and if they can handle the Aussies when they will be so desperate to win.

  • Nagamooto on January 19, 2008, 21:35 GMT

    India have suffered more than twice as many incorrect decisions as Australia this series, both in Indian players being incorrectly given out and in Australian players being given a second life.

    Dignity? The arrogant, ignorant and repulsive demeanour of the Aussie team, particularly Ponting (especially his comments to a journalist in saying, 'you shouldn't be here if you're questionning my integrity') is disgusting and undignified. In fact, the decision to believe the words of some Australian batsman (and accepting this as proof of racist remarks), over the contrary words of an Indian batsman, are questionning of the dignity of Indian players and show favouritism!

    Kumble has remained respectful and a perfect ambassador for his nation. Ponting has created quite a different impression.

    The Indian board are a bunch of cowards: they should have cancelled the series and gone home, and paid the measly reparation the cricket council demands.

    Score should be 2-1 to India.

  • omi2kool on January 19, 2008, 21:23 GMT

    the decision to give chris rogers out was a right one, he had drifted across the line. and sachin tendulkar was also given out on a wrong decision in the first innings, so i guess it kinda squares it up

  • SPC75 on January 19, 2008, 21:08 GMT

    Congrats to a great performance by India. Also a bigger congrats to the dignified performance from Ricky and the boys. The media has become India's 13th player, their coverage since the Sydney test has been nothing but a disgrace. I hope Peter Roebuck has the decency to admit he is so wrong about Ricky. Gee I haven't heard much carry on about 2 crucial umpiring decisions that may have affected the outcome, Hussey and Symonds. But as we Australia's realise thats all part of this great game!Can't wait for Adelaide for Australia's revenge!

  • GothicFox on January 19, 2008, 20:24 GMT

    Really been a great victory for the Indian team. Anil Kumble, while taliking in a post match interview, said that after the Sydney fiasco, India had 2 options - either go back home, or stay and show the world what they were capable of...They took the latter option, and have really shown the cricketing fraternity strength and self belief they possess...Kudos to Kumble for leading with such grit and determination, and instilling confidence and pride in the other team members.A great victory to savor for all cricket lovers, and the series is nicely set up for Adelaide, a ground where India have happy memories of playing test cricket. 2-2 seems a very possible result now. All the best to the Men in Blue

  • cric_usa on January 19, 2008, 20:17 GMT

    This is in response to Popcorn mate's comments above. The Aussie defeat would have been even worse if incorrect LBW decisions weren't made against Sachin and Dhoni in the first innings. Chris Rogers would have gone anyways in the next few overs of Pathan. Sure there were many incorrect decisions but unlike Sydney, it was balanced. So don't go there.

  • Shan_Karthic on January 19, 2008, 20:09 GMT

    Does mental disintegration or rather the lack of mental disintegration have anything to do with this rivalry (Australia have won only 12 tests in India, almost half of them in the first 2 - 3 series when India were kind of minnows)? Australia (or for that matter any team outside the subcontinent) never liked to tour India much before the past decade or two. Economic liberalization, globalization and rising Indian money/people power has changed that over the past 10 - 15 years, not only in cricket but in many other spheres. Indian teams before the late 90s were not aggresive and always wilted under pressure. The aim seemed rather to participate and not even worry about compete let alone win. There were individual exceptions and great players were around but collectively that assertion is valid. Again, over the last 10 - 15 years, Indians have found their confidence level increasing and have began asserting themselves. Sport is a but reflection of the societies that indulge in it.

  • Shan_Karthic on January 19, 2008, 19:59 GMT

    About the contentious decisions,

    1) Rauf had consistently decided the LBW decisions throughout the match. The count is probably tied 2 - 2 between the teams unlike the last match where it was something like 8 - 3 in Australia's favor. Anyway LBWs that are not plumb can always be argued either way. Even, Hawkeye is not perfect. 2) Symonds LBW was wrong and probably the only decision that can be proved to have been outright incorrect. But then he has been given enough decisions in his favour in this series. 3) Indians (like many other teams) have always complained against wrong umpiring decisions and Australians have always argued that decisions even out. They can not change sides now when things do not go their way. 4) Another argument from Australians have been "Yes, umpires make mistakes, and that normally favours the dominant team. Bad luck if you are not the dominant team". Well, for this match, Australia were struggling and were outbowled and outbatted anyway.

  • digit_wizard on January 19, 2008, 19:53 GMT

    popcorn: may we point to Sachin Tendulkar on 71 in the first innings and MS Dhoni on 38 in the second. The result might have been different in those cases too. The only difference is that the decisions were evenly balanced this time. Now, India has withdrawn charges against Hogg, the match was played in good spirit. Can we please move on?

  • niraj13 on January 19, 2008, 19:51 GMT

    It's true that India, like no other team, has the right armoury to challenge Australia. It's a unique combination of skill, experience and spirit. As an Indian, I am really proud of this fact. Indians were a little off-colour at the MCG, probably because it was their first test of the tour. They put on a great show at the SCG and definitely did not deserve to lose. Probably every true cricket-lover in the world had eyes on this 3rd test match and wished an Indian win. It is very pleasing to see that happen. However, India should not dwell on the bubble of complacency. It has happened to India so many times in the past. Big wins are usually followed by humiliating defeats. The only thing that should be derived from this win is confidence and morale-boost for the next game at Adelaide. If Hayden and Hogg return to the side, it will be a tough outing for India. India should make every effort to win that game to level the series because they deserve nothing less.

  • Prasadbby on January 19, 2008, 19:49 GMT

    Australia and India rivalry since a long time from 1990s has been fascinating and took a new meaning since 2001. All the series since then has been without doubt a treat to watch no matter what the results have been.

    Popcorn, decisions haven't been one sided to Australia like it was for India in Sydney. If Hussey, Andrew and Chris Rogers got the rub of the stick, then so did Tendulkar, Dhoni and decisions that went against India when Ricky was batting. So there is hardly anything to complain about. And India were more dignified in their victory than Australia could ever hope for. So lets not get into it. Lets just say that India have always been gracious as was seen by the Hogg complaint been taken back. Saved an embarressment to Ausralia and certainly to Mike Proctor and ICC if they had let Hogg get away with it.

  • fadooo on January 19, 2008, 19:47 GMT

    Well it has to be said the mainstays of australian bowling lineup throughout their dominance were warne and mcgrath. Last time india toured under ganguly, neither warne or mcgrath played the series. I am sure the resultso of that series would have been very differant if they had. Other teams haven't been so lucky. And again, this time both have retired, and i am sure we'll see other teams start doing well against australians too.

  • FMatt on January 19, 2008, 19:36 GMT

    I knew a few "What if" comments would come from the Aussie fans sooner or later. I noticed the comments from 'popcorn'...well, what goes around also comes around. Dhoni and Tendulkar were given out incorrectly in this test. So unlike Sydney, at least this time it evened out, or should I add that 'if' lbw decisions were judged correctly, then Aussies would have been chasing 500+ especially with Tendulkar's looking set for a bigger first innings score. And of course, Ponting wouldn't have lasted as long as he did in the 2nd innings or Dravid in the 1st. To quote some of the Aussie fan comments after Sydney, umpires are human and they make mistakes (at least it is the subjective lbw's this time and not clear cut catches that were misjudged). So all things considered, India deserved this win. This should set up a good contest for Adelaide and I am definitely not over the moon when I think that the Indian big three did fail with the willow in the second innings here. Let's see what happens.

  • ipgoonda on January 19, 2008, 19:30 GMT

    Comeon popcorn, where's the spirit? Would you at least concede that if Tendulkar and Dhoni were not out on similar lbw decisions in the 1st innings by the same umpire as Hussey, AUS would have a significantly higher run chase than 413?

  • mathematicised on January 19, 2008, 19:29 GMT

    With reference to popcorn's comment, Ponting should have been given in the morning when he did not offer a shot to Ishant Sharma, Tendulkar and Dhoni were both given out in the first innings when the ball was going over the stumps. Even things out for you?

    No words will do justice to this Indian performance. A perfect advertisement for Test cricket. Thanks again Sambit for a wonderful article.

  • xrules on January 19, 2008, 19:14 GMT

    "Australia,unlike India,has been dignified in not making an issue of the incorrect decisions of giving Chris Rogers out lbw in the first innings, Mike Hussey and Andrew Symonds in the second innings. The result may have been different. "

    Yes the result "MAY" have been different, in Sydney we all know the result was definitely different. Also you are forgetting Sachin, and Dhoni in the first innings. Hussey was no differnt than Sachin, or Dhoni. I agree Symonds was a bad decision. Yes there were umpiring errors but they were evened out as it happens in most matches and not like the Sydney test. Sure Australia is the best team currently in the team, and no other team has won so many matches as the Australians, but they should learn to loose as well and respect other teams. Which I think they did to some extent after the Sydney test.

  • AlokJoshi on January 19, 2008, 18:32 GMT

    India-Australia test matches in this century have been fabulous. 10-8 to Australia suggests that they are ahead - yet it is a marginal edge, and puts India as their most mentionable opponents during two distinct phases of unrivalled supremacy in the last 7-8 years. And it is fitting that India broke the Aussie winning sequence on both occasions. We have been fortunate to witness some of the most amazing test matches ever played, and can only wish that future series provide similar exhilaration. The sour taste left after ungainly episodes at Sydney has been obliterated by two evenly matched, great teams playing hard, positive cricket at Perth. The spirit of cricket is alive. Kudos to the Australian side for introspection and a champion like disposition at Perth, and to the Indian team for positive thinking and winning despite all odds. For now, Adelaide holds promise for more brilliance and an ideal setting for another epic - hopefully to be enacted over five days!

  • KRISHNAJAGA on January 19, 2008, 17:55 GMT

    Australia must be really wondering if Bollywood script writers had a hand :

    world's fastest pitch in Perth ,Four fast bowlers in the armoury , Much hyped Shaun Tait waiting to be unleashed, India humbled in Sydney ,,Aussies cocksure to extend the streak to 17 in Perth but the Wall Dravid , the Rock Kumble and Irfan ,Ishant and RP Swing and Team India think otherwise !!

    A Bollywood movie could'nt have scripted it better

  • Rits on January 19, 2008, 17:36 GMT

    Yes the Indo-Aus rivalry has been revived.But it still hurts to see that India could actually have been in a position to win a historic test series had the Sydney Test not been played the way it was. But nevermind, i am sure that the entire cricketing fraternity will look up to another good contest between bat and ball in Adelaide.Kudos to Team India!!!

  • abhinavvishnu on January 19, 2008, 16:52 GMT

    What a great victory by india under so much pressure. My only concern is that the next test may not be a letdown...

  • Nampally on January 19, 2008, 16:40 GMT

    Congratulations to India and Anil Kumble on a fantastic win. This win was especially sweet after the Umpiring decisions denied India the Sydney test win. Sehwag led the way by giving India a great aggressive start in both the innings, which laid the foundation.Dravid and Tendulkar provided the grit in the first innings. India showed great determination in fighting back after the "Big three" failed in the second innings.Laxman was the sheet anchor with solid support from Sehwag,Pathan, Dhoni and RP Singh enabling India a respectable second innings total. Pathan was magnificient in removing the openers in both the innings & richly deserved the Man of the Match. RP Singh, Ishant, Kumble and Sehwag made great timely bowling contributions. Brilliant Close catching of Dhoni, Dravid, Laxman and Tendulkar added a new dimension. As Kumble rightly said it was a team win where everyone contibuted. If India play to their potential, strong chances of 2-2 series tie still exist. "Go India, Go".

  • Hitesh_DeVilliers on January 19, 2008, 16:09 GMT

    It's been a great victory for the Indians.There was a lot of pressure on India before the match to boycott the tour in retaliation to the events of Sydney.But they stayed on and showed other teams that Australia are beatable.This sets up the series now because India was the last team to defeat Australia in Adelaide and they will be looking to do it again.The bowlers setup this amazing win and the resurgence of Irfan Pathan has been amazing.This has been a historic victory and I am sure will go down as a historic series if India win in Adelaide which I am sure they have a great chance at. ROCK ON TEAM INDIA!

  • Sarath on January 19, 2008, 15:56 GMT

    As rightly said, almost any other team would have backed-off with the kind of hostility the Indians faced in Sydney.. Hats off to Kumble and the team.. Gr8 work.. Especially the bowlers.. Just awesome.. As Kumble, rightly put, this shows tat the Aussies can be beaten.. But now, we can't be complacent and we need to win the Adelaide Test too.. Wishing the team all the very best..

  • lordricha27 on January 19, 2008, 15:51 GMT

    Yeah. The India-Australia rivalry seems to be fast emerging as one of the most intense rivalries in world cricket. The recent Indo-Aus series have produced many of the greatest Test matches of the decade, if not of all time. Something which cannot be said about the 2007 Ashes and the recent India-Pak series.

  • Satyanveshi on January 19, 2008, 14:50 GMT

    A bit of expected euphoria in ur column as there was skepticism before the start of series. It does no credit to wash over the obvious failures of Wasim Jaffer and Big three under pressure. So lets sit back and cherish the victory and not get into unrealistic expectations. If you appreciate Kumble notice the way he maintains his calm in both victory and defeat.

  • PowerKid on January 19, 2008, 14:50 GMT

    This is the same Kumble who bowled his heart out with a broken Jaw.. True team player and would be a great captain.. Wish we had him before

  • time4heroes87 on January 19, 2008, 14:27 GMT

    excellent article and a better match,it will be interesting to see how these two teams maintain their rivalry in the next 4/5 years. Australia are in the midst of losing a clutch of great players while fab4 and kumble can't go on forever. Is this the last hurrah of the great rivalry (i.e pakistan v w.i at start of 90's)or will it be upheld in players like pathan, singh, johnson, clarke. my guess is australia will continue to produce test quality players; it is up to the indian administration to ensure they do the same and not get too distracted by odis (see yuvi's waste of his potential. still, a series to savour. does anyone know of future indian batting stars and how players like suresh raina and kai are doing?

  • popcorn on January 19, 2008, 14:12 GMT

    Australia,unlike India,has been dignified in not making an issue of the incorrect decisions of giving Chris Rogers out lbw in the first innings, Mike Hussey and Andrew Symonds in the second innings.

    The result may have been different.

  • No featured comments at the moment.

  • popcorn on January 19, 2008, 14:12 GMT

    Australia,unlike India,has been dignified in not making an issue of the incorrect decisions of giving Chris Rogers out lbw in the first innings, Mike Hussey and Andrew Symonds in the second innings.

    The result may have been different.

  • time4heroes87 on January 19, 2008, 14:27 GMT

    excellent article and a better match,it will be interesting to see how these two teams maintain their rivalry in the next 4/5 years. Australia are in the midst of losing a clutch of great players while fab4 and kumble can't go on forever. Is this the last hurrah of the great rivalry (i.e pakistan v w.i at start of 90's)or will it be upheld in players like pathan, singh, johnson, clarke. my guess is australia will continue to produce test quality players; it is up to the indian administration to ensure they do the same and not get too distracted by odis (see yuvi's waste of his potential. still, a series to savour. does anyone know of future indian batting stars and how players like suresh raina and kai are doing?

  • PowerKid on January 19, 2008, 14:50 GMT

    This is the same Kumble who bowled his heart out with a broken Jaw.. True team player and would be a great captain.. Wish we had him before

  • Satyanveshi on January 19, 2008, 14:50 GMT

    A bit of expected euphoria in ur column as there was skepticism before the start of series. It does no credit to wash over the obvious failures of Wasim Jaffer and Big three under pressure. So lets sit back and cherish the victory and not get into unrealistic expectations. If you appreciate Kumble notice the way he maintains his calm in both victory and defeat.

  • lordricha27 on January 19, 2008, 15:51 GMT

    Yeah. The India-Australia rivalry seems to be fast emerging as one of the most intense rivalries in world cricket. The recent Indo-Aus series have produced many of the greatest Test matches of the decade, if not of all time. Something which cannot be said about the 2007 Ashes and the recent India-Pak series.

  • Sarath on January 19, 2008, 15:56 GMT

    As rightly said, almost any other team would have backed-off with the kind of hostility the Indians faced in Sydney.. Hats off to Kumble and the team.. Gr8 work.. Especially the bowlers.. Just awesome.. As Kumble, rightly put, this shows tat the Aussies can be beaten.. But now, we can't be complacent and we need to win the Adelaide Test too.. Wishing the team all the very best..

  • Hitesh_DeVilliers on January 19, 2008, 16:09 GMT

    It's been a great victory for the Indians.There was a lot of pressure on India before the match to boycott the tour in retaliation to the events of Sydney.But they stayed on and showed other teams that Australia are beatable.This sets up the series now because India was the last team to defeat Australia in Adelaide and they will be looking to do it again.The bowlers setup this amazing win and the resurgence of Irfan Pathan has been amazing.This has been a historic victory and I am sure will go down as a historic series if India win in Adelaide which I am sure they have a great chance at. ROCK ON TEAM INDIA!

  • Nampally on January 19, 2008, 16:40 GMT

    Congratulations to India and Anil Kumble on a fantastic win. This win was especially sweet after the Umpiring decisions denied India the Sydney test win. Sehwag led the way by giving India a great aggressive start in both the innings, which laid the foundation.Dravid and Tendulkar provided the grit in the first innings. India showed great determination in fighting back after the "Big three" failed in the second innings.Laxman was the sheet anchor with solid support from Sehwag,Pathan, Dhoni and RP Singh enabling India a respectable second innings total. Pathan was magnificient in removing the openers in both the innings & richly deserved the Man of the Match. RP Singh, Ishant, Kumble and Sehwag made great timely bowling contributions. Brilliant Close catching of Dhoni, Dravid, Laxman and Tendulkar added a new dimension. As Kumble rightly said it was a team win where everyone contibuted. If India play to their potential, strong chances of 2-2 series tie still exist. "Go India, Go".

  • abhinavvishnu on January 19, 2008, 16:52 GMT

    What a great victory by india under so much pressure. My only concern is that the next test may not be a letdown...

  • Rits on January 19, 2008, 17:36 GMT

    Yes the Indo-Aus rivalry has been revived.But it still hurts to see that India could actually have been in a position to win a historic test series had the Sydney Test not been played the way it was. But nevermind, i am sure that the entire cricketing fraternity will look up to another good contest between bat and ball in Adelaide.Kudos to Team India!!!