As the ball rolls away towards the long-off boundary from a straight-drive off Rishabh Pant’s bat from the bowling of Josh Hazlewood, India wins the Border-Gavaskar Trophy, for the consecutive series, in Australia, en route also breaching Australia’s fortress, The Gabba.
With the victory in Brisbane, India takes the series 2-1; one which looked impossible after the 36 all-out disaster in Adelaide. Stand-in skipper, Ajinkya Rahane led from the front in Melbourne with a century. The batsmen battled out inner and outer challenges in Sydney to keep the series level. Finally, at the Gabba, a venue where Australia haven’t lost since 1988, a bruised Indian squad etched history.
In Brisbane, set a target of 328, India lost Rohit Sharma early. But, other batters conjured partnerships; Shubman Gill, Cheteshwar Pujara notched up their respective fifties. It was Rishabh Pant, who just like in Sydney, lit the hope of a successful chase. While in Sydney, he got out for 97, in Brisbane, his 89* was enough to see India home in the last overs of the match.
Watch the winning moment:
— cricket.com.au (@cricketcomau) January 19, 2021
Rishabh Pant awarded Man of the Match
Rishabh Pant was awarded the Man of the Match in Brisbane. Pant was dropped from the first Test in Adelaide for Wriddhiman Saha’s superior wicket-keeping skills. However, he came in the eleven in the second Test to strengthen the batting.
The 23-year-old ends the tour as India’s highest run-scorer. He scored 274 runs – 3 more than Cheteshwar Pujara in one less match – with 2 fifties at an average of 68.
India will host Joe Root’s England for a 4-match Test series. While Saha, who is, unarguably, a better keeper than Pant may come in the side, however, the left-hander has done enough to stay in the eleven purely as a batsman.
With his exploits with the bat against Australia, Pant has also made a case for a return to the limited-overs team from which he was dropped earlier.