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India vs Australia: Stat-attack from Border-Gavaskar Trophy

India won the four-match Test series 2-1 to regain the sparkly Border-Gavaskar Trophy.

Akash Khanna | New Delhi |

Under the captaincy of Virat Kohli and Ajinkya Rahane, India won the four-match Test series 2-1 to regain the sparkly Border-Gavaskar Trophy at the HPCA Stadium, Dharamsala on Tuesday.

The series witnessed high-sparking clashes and every session of a Test match was extremely exciting to watch.

En route, a few cricketers marked their impressions and a few broke records on top of that.

Pune Test: Gargantuan target by Australia

India entered the battleground being home favourites, though they couldn’t start well. Riding on a strokeful century by skipper Steve Smith, Australive give India a 441-un target to win, their third-highest in India.

The top two targets, 542 in Nagpur and and 456 in Bangalore, were given by the Aussies in the 2004-05 series. Australia won both the matches and this one as well.

Spectators in Pune witnessed captain Smith scoring his fifth consecutive Test century against India. Before the series, the 27-year-old hit a hundred in each match of Australia’s 2014-15 home series.

On the other hand, India continued to falter with losing their last seven wickets for  11 runs, their worst ever in Test cricket.

Star player Virat Kohli also failed to shine in Pune, in fact his 13 runs from both the innings (0, 13) was marked to be his lowest-ever in a home Test, where he batted in both innings.

Bangalore Test: KL Rahul – the impeccable opener

Batting in front of his home crowd, KL Rahul smashed 90 and 51 runs in two innings to drive the hosts to a 75-run win in Bangalore to level the four-match Test series.

With this, Rahul became the third opener in the history of cricket to hit a fifty-plus knock in both the innings of a Test match. Other two that feature in the list are West Indies’ Gordon Greenidge (1974) and India’s Ajay Jadeja (1995).

Conversely, Australian opener David Warner continued struggling with his form. Indian off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin chipped in, making him his bunny as he dismissed him for record eighth time.

Warner has faced Ashwin in 12 Tests and losing his wicket to him eight times was his highest to have fallen to any bowler.

However, it wasn’t just India that dominated throughout the Test. Australia also had a grip over the match for a while. In the first innings, India’s middle-order batsmen Ajinkya Rahane, Karun Nair, Cheteshwar Pujara and Ravichandran Ashwin lost their wicket in a span of 8 balls, the quickest dismissal trail in Test cricket.

Ranchi Test: Pujara surpasses Dravid’s record

The turf of Ranchi that hosted a Test for the first time, saw Cheteshwar Pujara troubling the mighty Australians as much as legendary batsmen Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid and VVS Laxman used to do.

Pujara slammed his second double-ton against Australia, joint-most among Indian batsmen with Tendulkar and Laxman and joint third-most overall in international cricket.

His 525-ball knock of 202 runs was the longest ever in the history of Indian Test cricket. Earlier, Dravid had faced maximum 495 balls in his innings of 270 runs in Rawalpindi in 2004.

Batting along with wicketkeeper-batsman Wriddhiman Saha, Pujara put a record 199-run partnership stand, highest ever for the seventh-wicket.

Dharamsala Test: Ashwin, Jadeja end well

Indian tweaker Ravindra Jadeja was bestowed with the Man of The Series award for claiming 25 wickets and scoring 127 runs, batting at lower-middle-order.

In the Dharamsala Test, the 28-year-old scored his sixth fifty-plus knock in the 2016-17 season, equal to captain Virat Kohli, Murali Vijay and KL Rahul.

Jadeja also became the third player to score 500-plus runs and claim fifty-plus wickets in a Test season. Earlier, Kapil Dev and Mitchell Johnson had achieved the same feat in 1979-80 and 2008-09 season respectively.

However, Pujara was the one who excelled the most in the season as he scored 1316 at an average of 62.66, second most by any batsmen. Former Australia captain Ricky Ponting leads the chart with 1483 runs at an average of 78.05, with eight centuries.

In the bowlers’ chart, Ravichandran Ashwin stole all the limelight claiming record 79 wickets in the 2016-17 season, the most by any bowler in a season.

The 30-year-old spinner went past South Africa’s Dale Steyn, who took 78 wickets in 2007-08 season.