India v New Zealand, 1st Test, Hyderabad, 4th day August 26, 2012

Ashwin spins India to innings win


India 438 (Pujara 159, Dhoni 73, Patel 4-100) beat New Zealand 159 (Franklin 43* Ashwin 6-31) & 164 (Williamson 52, Ashwin 6-54) by an innings and 115 runs
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

For all that spin bowling is considered an art involving guile and deception, India's spinners took apart the New Zealand batting with the precision of surgeons combined with the calculation of mathematicians. The first Test in Hyderabad had a severely truncated third day and a slightly curtailed fourth, but ended with a day to spare.

India won by an innings and 115 runs, its spinners taking 18 of the 20 wickets to fall. New Zealand, following on in their second innings, were all out for 164 an hour before the scheduled close of play on Sunday, losing their last nine wickets for 66 runs.

At the top of the pile stood R Ashwin, who finished the game with his first ten-wicket bag in Tests, taking 6 for 54 in the second innings and a match tally of 12 for 85 - the best figures for an Indian bowler in Tests versus New Zealand.

Ashwin sent down a repertoire of flighted off-breaks and top-spinners of varing pace, made canny use of his special "carrom" ball. It helped clean up the New Zealand tail, with four still left for the taking after tea. Ashwin got three of the remaining four, two with the carrom ball that leaves the batsman. Ashwin's second-innings tally followed up his 6 for 31 in the first.

Left-arm spinner Pragyan Ojha bowled in perfect tandem with Ashwin, both making maximum use of the frequent bite and bounce on the surface, and also the struggle of the New Zealand batsmen against spin. Ojha's match tally was 6 for 92.

The morning session was delayed by two hours due to rain and India's push for victory was resisted handsomely up by a gutsy 72-run second wicket partnership between Brendon McCullum and Kane Williamson. They batted all through the 90 minutes before lunch, scoring 51 careful runs and holding off the Indian spinners.

McCullum's departure early on in the second session gave the Indians the opening. New Zealand's last nine wickets fell for 66 runs; it had taken a few pieces of masterful spin to pull the ground out from underneath New Zealand's feet.

It all began when McCullum steamed off when given out leg before in Umesh Yadav's second over after lunch, an inside edge the source of his fury. The sound of the inside edge appeared decisive but replays showed simultaneous points of contact off both bat and pad. McCullum was later reprimanded by the match referee for showing dissent to umpire Steve Davis' decision. McCullum's had been a sagacious innings, the perfect senior colleague in partnership with the 22-year-old Williamson, scoring 32 in close to three hours of batting.

Until then, McCullum had played the assured hand, Williamson taking the risks of trying to drive against the spin. Ashwin tried to lure him into a false stroke. In the first session, the waiting game worked for New Zealand, Williamson driving Ashwin down the ground for a boundary the moment he over pitched. McCullum pulled out his patent pull shot when Ojha bowled one short and on leg stump. It was New Zealand's session in which their batsmen held some control.

After the break, though, came the deluge. If McCullum fell to a somewhat controversial lbw, seven runs later, Ross Taylor shouldered arms to Ashwin, who got the ball to turn and knock the top of his off stump. Williamson - clearly New Zealand's batsman of the entire Test - held his own at the other end, getting to 50 with a steer past third man for three.

With less than half an hour left for tea, Ojha, who had bowled 11 overs non-stop from one end, came in for his second spell of the day. The second ball was a peach: it looped up towards the stumps and drew Williamson forward. As it pitched, it bounced and turned away from him, nibbled at the edge of Williamson's bat and flew to Virender Sehwag at first slip.

Daniel Flynn, who had until then played foil to Williamson, tried to sweep Ashwin in his 54-minute innings for the first time. The end result was identical to his first innings: unequivocally, leg before for 11. Three runs later, Ashwin worked out the dismissal of James Franklin, with five minutes left for tea. Franklin nicked a climbing off break, and Sehwag dived to his right to take a one-handed catch at first slip. Five wickets had fallen for 54 runs in the 30 overs between lunch and tea. Right there, New Zealand's time in the Test match was as good as up.

Sharda Ugra is senior editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Keppetipola on August 29, 2012, 16:33 GMT

    g.narsimha, we managed to thrash you all in Bangalore in 2005! We have won more tests in India than any other side because we have a great cricket history. We even have produced great batsmen. You Indians keep refusing DRS all to safeguard your overrated batsmen. If DRS was used non stop, India were to lose even more tests for sure.

  • Keppetipola on August 29, 2012, 16:29 GMT

    @Hindh88, yeah why cant the Aussies tour Pakistan at all? They never toured Pakistan from 1998 onwards. So without any home cricket for us against the Aussies how can we get home advantage?? We managed to win 3-0 against England in tests this year when you all got clobbered in style 4-0 at the hands of England. We also managed a test match win in England in 2010, when you all managed none the following year. You all are mere flat track bullies. Have nt England lost more than 6 series in a row against Australia from 1987 to 2005? Check your facts before talking!

  • Keppetipola on August 29, 2012, 16:10 GMT

    @g.narsimha, Indians achieved more than others in the region?? Look at our win loss ration in tests. We have won more tests than what we lost. Look at this link below. We have played less tests than India overall but won more tests than India, who have lost more tests than what they have won. See this

  • narsimha on August 29, 2012, 7:40 GMT

    contin,,baring few wins in ua u r team done nothing during this period all d hell brok out after our worst away performance in decades in eng, aus , every one had a field day in demeaning our greats is it apropriat to rubbish them based on just few bad performance delebratly ignoring thier previos performances if a batsman counted to b best , will have to prove in all conditions ,than bowl;ers also need to go through on those parameters, u declared MURALI, WARNE, SAQLAIN as best bowlers THAN WHAT ABOUT THEIR PERFORMANCE against INDIA all mesebly failed WARNEE WaS UTTER FLOP AVE 50 + IN ALL FORMETS IN HOME & AWAY MURALI WAS also pathetic could not win a single test in iIDIA for LANKANS SAQLAIN FARED FAR BETTER EVN THOUGH HE PLAYED FEWER MATCHES THAN THESE 2 HE WAS BEST AS HE PROVED SOME THING AGAINST his ERAS best batting line up against spinners , i have stats to prove so my dear at the end of the DAY result metters , & we achieved more than others fr ths REGION ,

  • DINESH on August 29, 2012, 7:38 GMT

    AHmed Uetian: Despite all these facts and figures (may be true also) India beat Pakistan in WC and also Asia Cup convincingly. If you have any doubt ask Wahab Riaz 4-0-50-0.

  • narsimha on August 29, 2012, 7:17 GMT

    AHMADUITEN-WE never claimed that our boling was great had we been blessed with even a reasionable all weather bowlers with rhis formidable batting line up our team would have been counted along the great teams of WI, AUS , REG U R STATS I DONT AGREE with out result those are meaningless winning is important,this just whining where the result its wothles even after scoring 330= U R LOst , FEW ARE TAKING CREDIT THAT WE COULD RESTRICT SO& SO WITH IN 200 , but than u fail to score those runs for a win ,wether u gives 5.6 runs per over or 4 at the end of the day result metters in that aspect we have achieved them in most of the places in the last decade I WONT AGREE THAT SAHWAAG IS ordinery, flat track bully perfoms agnst weaker opposition , see he was instrumental in a series win in PAK , is it pak in its own place is weakr opposition , his scores in AUS, SA U R NOT DEFERENT FROM OTHER IND BASHERS ,MY SIMPLE LOGIC IF U CLAIM IAM THE BEST THAN SHOW THE RESULT , contin......

  • Ajay on August 29, 2012, 5:07 GMT

    @pak victorius Yes all indian fans know how pakistan was whitewashed by australia for 4 test SERIES IN A ROW FROM 1999-2010...LOL Now that is a record only pak can create...

  • Dummy4 on August 29, 2012, 0:37 GMT

    contd........Dhoni, Yuvi & Raina r good cameo players...........3). Pk balling is certainly far superior than Ind as e.g in last 1 year PK ODI E/R is 4.3 (world's best) & of Ind is 5.6 (world's worst) despite playing on similar pitches........For comparison always compare apples vs apples e.g. In Asia cup we saw PK receieved 240 & 230 from Ban & 180 from Sl whereas on same pitches Ind received 290 from Ban & 250 from SL similarly in WC on Asian flat tracks Pk received 170 from AUS & 220 from Sl whereas Ind received 260 from AUS & 280 from SL.......... Saqlain & Ajmal r world class - share league with Murli & Warne and r far superior than any of their Ind counterparts based on all bowling stats & their performance in big matches .

  • Dummy4 on August 29, 2012, 0:36 GMT

    Being a balanced PK fan (not frenetic) with enough cricket research & knowledge I would say that we must give credit where it is due..1). In tests Pk fans r right that Ind batters Lax & Sehwag r flat track bullies as in recent SA WI ENG & AUS tours their overall avg is 29 & 21 respectively and this has been the story for their entire carrer The main reason being lack of footwork..But certainly Tendulkar & Dravid r not as on same tours they avged 45 & 41 respectively & their avg has been 50 in these countries - people will wrongly think that it is low avg in fact it is nearly the best avg by any foreign player in these countries................2). In ODI batting mainly SRT has been big game player & consistent performer with tournament final & WC avg of over 50 & Gangully comes nxt. Sahwag has been a dasher who has mostly performed in unimp matches & capitalized on weak oppositions Dravid has been ODI jinx. Kohli is good but is yet to perform in big games i.e finals & WC

  • Dummy4 on August 28, 2012, 22:56 GMT

    bye bye Bhaji............

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