Prime Minister Narendra Modi has hailed the Ajinkya Rahane-led Team India for the resilience, grit, hard work, and unrelenting determination that they displayed while scripting a triumph for the ages in Australia.
After having been shot out for their record-lowest total of 36, Team India fought back brilliantly despite the absence of regular skipper Virat Kohli and a whole host of their first-choice players to turn the tables on Australia.
The Men in Blue started the turnaround with a comprehensive eight-wicket win in the Boxing Day Test at the iconic Melbourne Cricket Ground where skipper Ajinkya Rahane led from the front with a brilliantly composed 112.
Then in Sydney, Team India was primed with the task of batting out the entire final day to save the Test. And, the defiance of Cheteshwar Pujara, the flamboyance of Rishabh Pant, and the ‘over my dead body’ attitude of Ravichandran Ashwin and Hanuma Vihari ensured that the visitors pulled off a miraculous draw.
More injuries galore for India in Brisbane and the Men in Blue were forced to field a highly inexperienced attack in the form of Mohammed Siraj, T Natarajan, Shardul Thakur, Navdeep Saini, and Washington Sundar.
However, the youngsters grabbed their chances with both hands. Shardul Thakur and Washington Sundar scripted a brilliant 123-run-stand in the first innings to lift the visitors from a precarious state of 6/186. This was in addition to the 12 wickets that the duo- Shardul (7) and Washington (4)- claimed between them.
Mohammed Siraj’s maiden five-for in the second innings meant India needed a record 328 to win on the final day, which they did thanks to get another gutsy knock by Cheteshwar Pujara and flamboyant knocks of 91 and 89* by Shubman Gill and Rishabh Pant respectively.
“This month, we got good news from the cricket pitch. After initial hiccups, the Indian team bounced back gloriously and won the series in Australia. Our team’s hard work and teamwork was inspiring,” PM Narendra Modi said during ‘Mann Ki Baat’, on Sunday.
इस महीने, क्रिकेट पिच से भी बहुत अच्छी खबर मिली | हमारी क्रिकेट टीम ने शुरुआती दिक्कतों के बाद, शानदार वापसी करते हुए ऑस्ट्रेलिया में सीरीज जीती | हमारे खिलाड़ियों का hard work और teamwork प्रेरित करने वाला है : PM @narendramodi #MannKiBaat
— PMO India (@PMOIndia) January 31, 2021
Following PM Modi’s tweet, here is how the likes of Virat Kohli, Ajinkya Rahane, Ravichandran Ashwin reacted:
— Virat Kohli (@imVkohli) January 31, 2021
Thank you for your words of encouragement Shri @narendramodi Ji ? It’s always an honour to represent our country, we hope to continue inspiring more Indians as we move forward ?? https://t.co/8vxfrU3N4v
— Ajinkya Rahane (@ajinkyarahane88) January 31, 2021
Thank you for your kind words sir. ?? https://t.co/m6whAG0GAc
— Washington Sundar (@Sundarwashi5) January 31, 2021
Thank you so much sir? https://t.co/NnCwER0EEe
— Ashwin ?? (@ashwinravi99) January 31, 2021