Second Test Match

INDIA v AUSTRALIA 1956-57

Conditions favoured Australia throughout the five days. Their pace attack gained considerable assistance from the pitch in India's first innings, and had Crawford not been forced to leave the field with a muscular injury after taking three wickets for 28 on the first day, the total might have been considerably less. Australia, in turn, batted on an easy surface, and India's bowling came in for merciless treatment by Burke and Harvey. The pitch had deteriorated by the time India batted again, and every ball from Benaud, Davidson and Wilson kicked up a puff of dust, the result of overnight covering of the entire pitch.

On the first day India lost their first two wickets for 18 runs, but Manjrekar and Ramchand saw them out of trouble with watchful innings. Ramchand went on to his century on the second day, but only Adhikari of the later batsmen gave him real assistance. Harvey's superb batting dominated the third day. The left-hander was at his brilliant best, scoring 140 of a stand of 204 with Burke in just over four hours. His stroke play so completely captivated the crowd that when he completed his century a number of youths scaled the six-foot fence around the playing area, ran to the wicket and draped the Australian with garlands of flowers. Harvey, who hit eighteen 4's, scored his runs in 73 overs. After Harvey left to a mistimed pull, Burke and Burge carried on the punishment of the attack with a stand of 137 before Burke was dismissed after an innings lasting over eight hours.

Australia declared with a lead of 272, when Benaud dismissed Mankad at 31, India faced an uphill struggle to avoid defeat. Roy made a determined counter attack, and Umrigar played an innings of intense concentration which probably saved his side from an innings defeat, but he was continually barracked during six hours at the wicket.

© John Wisden & Co