Another match that lasted the distance. However, there are a number of issues that will need a post-mortem. Was Australia's declaration timing ok? Why did India rejig the batting order? What about Watson's place? Will Rohit Sharma be back in Sydney? Dhoni's captaincy? The Virat-Johnson love affair.. Plenty of topics to be covered by our analysts in the next two days. Enjoy the new year's party. We will catch up at Sydney. Thanks for the comments and feedback. Ciao ciao.
"It was a tough five days on a pretty flat wicket. Couple of drop catches in the field cost us dear," says Steven Smith. "India played well, but we have got the series. The wicket did not deteriorate much and they had some strong batting, so we wanted to take it away from them. It was about keeping the series safe, rather than Shaun's hundred. We came close here but it wasn't enough. We are looking forward to make it 3-0 in Sydney. Rhino was outstanding with the bat and with the ball, helped us build up a strong total in the first innings."
"Quite happy with the draw. Could have ended in a mess on the last day," says MS Dhoni. "The bowlers really bowled well, especially in the second innings. I don't really want to comment on (declaration). If your batsman reaches 90 than you have to wait for him. We have found ways to trouble ourselves. We have got good partnerships in all tests, but we play loose shots. If you are playing well, then you need to carry the momentum forward. It was a bit slow (pitch) in the last hour and you feel the pressure. It was a fantastic display (Rahane-Kohli stand). Especially, because both of them looked to attack the bowling. Secondly, they both made sure they converted it to a big hundred. We need a bit of time. it's new side, not everyone is experienced. Over the last six months, they are getting better. It is a matter of time before we start delivering. We don't have an allrounder, but I am happy the way the bowlers bowled"
Ryan Harris is the Man of the Match for his first innings 74 and his six wickets
And that is it. Smith and Dhoni shake hands with four overs left in the game. Some thought India would go for the chase, some thought Australia would give themselves more time.. but this has ended in a draw in a rather tame fashion. I was bracing for more hop and jump action in the last four overs, but it was not to be. A batsman's game, this has been. Australia scored heavily in the first innings, India responded in kind. Then, in the last two days, it looked like we were heading towards and Adelaide-like finish, but then Australia took their time before declaring on the fifth day, ensuring along the way that they had a firm grasp on the B-G trophy, and very nearly made it 3-0. But the pitch lacked the zing bowlers needed and India, despite the hiccups, managed to survive a nervous last session. Excellent batting hands from both sides - Steven Smith continued piling on runs, so did Virat Kohli and Ajinkya Rahane. There was also a handy 99 in the second innings from Shaun Marsh, which is going to help him cement is place in the side for a while.
sbansban: "Can't figure why Smith didn't bowl those last 24 deliveries - all they needed was one good delivery to break this last partnership of two batters with some pretense of batting skills and then just three more to get rid of nine, ten and Jack.. "
Boll: "Draw probably a fair result. ..much as I was cheering for an Aussie win. Despite Oz being ahead in all 3 games, the way these young Indian batsmen have played has been brilliant to watch. Lots of chat about the amount of short form cricket played in India, but when you`re producing young, classical batsman as India seem to be doing, you must be doing something right. Virat Kohli, whatever you think of him as a bloke, has been absolutely stunning this series, and some of the other youngsters not far behind him. Looking forward to Sydney."
Prasanna S: "Despite all the critics Dhoni has shown what's missing with these young crop of Indian cricketers in a tight situation - 'Maturity', thank you captain cool for a draw."
Nithin: "Asking Pujara to bat down the order was indeed great move by Dhoni, he played 70 balls in the later part. With his form he would not have survived in swinging and pacey conditions"
Bala: "What "swinging and pacey conditions" are you talking about? The conditions throughout this test, and I would go so far as to say this series, have been extremely batsmen-friendly. You don't just blindly repeat "pace and bounce" just because this is Australia."
"Do you have a question about this Test, Mel Farrell and Gav Joshi cannot wait to answer them on the day 5 edition of #PoliteEnquiries. Send your questions on Twitter using that hashtag, they won't declare early".
Back over the wicket
Round the wicket now
Some spin. Lyon comes in.. Five men around the bat + the keeper
Watson comes in to bowl. Leg slip standing fine
kartik: "Everyone said India was defensive in the morning session... Had indian bowlers picked up early wickets this match would have ended with 20 overs remaining..."
Round the wicket now
Tony: "Justin - think Sydney 07/08, India had three wickets in hand at the start of the last over, Michael Clarke had all three with a ball to spare."
Goes back over the wicket
Justin: "If India don't lose a wicket, I wonder at what point Smith calls it off? 3 overs to go? Or will he keep at it until the last over?" ---- No harm in bowling those three.. 18 potentially wicket-taking deliveries there.. Aus only need four