Mumbai :Virat Kohli and company won the third closest Test win in terms of runs and took a 1-0 lead in the four-match Test series Down Under. The victory itself is history as this is for the first time India has won a opening Test of the series in Australia.
There are many good, the bad and the ugly which unfolded in this five-day drama in Adelaide. Cheteshwar Pujara stood tall among the batsmen, the bowlers were at the best, and the youngster Rishabh Pant went into the record books equalling the world record of most catches in a Test match (11).
But, it has been the team which came up with their team work and showed the Australians that India no matter where they play they are the champions in their own way. Free Press Journal spoke to a few former Indian players, who have played in Adelaide, about this win and their recap of their outing there.
“It was a fantastic win,” said Chandrakant Borde, better known as Chandu Borde. “It was a low score (323) but our bowlers fought well and hats off to the entire team,” said the Padma Bhushan, Arjuna Award winner. He did say that the Australians were handicapped without their regular skipper Steve Smith and opener David Warner. “They do not have the two players Steve and David but they are fighter and that they exhibited today as they fought till the end,” he said.
Recalling his stint at the Adelaide wicket, he said that during his 1968 tour India were at the verge of winning. “Yes, this win is a big boost for the team, and winning the opener is all a goods indication and enhance the confidence of the players and I am sure we will win the series,” said Borde who played his last Test match against Australia.
“I am happy and congratulate the side who have played well and this win in the first Test should be a morale booster,” said Dilip Vengsarkar who played in Adelaide under the captainship of Bishen Singh Bedi. “Yes, we will win the series,” he said.
“It was very good win and a perfect example of team work. There were also some outstanding individual performance, said Karsan Ghavri, the left-arm fast-medium bowler with a long run-up and a high leaping action. “But, I would like to mention, that Cheteshwar Pujara played a vital role in the victory,” Ghavri, who has taken 109 Test wickets including four five-wicket hauls, said.
The Rajkot cricketer did have many memorial outing with the Indian team. One of his memorable spell came during India’s tour of Australia in 1981. During second innings of the third Test, he got rid of Australia’s opening batsman John Dyson and captain Greg Chappell on successive deliveries which set up the stage for India’s victory. “No, No I would not say on the outcome of the series, but I can assure that it will be interesting,” concluded the bowler who has been Kapil Dev’s bowling partner.
Former India captain Sourav Ganguly said Kohli and Co will have to fight hard to win their maiden series in Australia. Congratulating Team India, Ganguly said: “It’s a great win. This will be a hard-fought and highly competitive series. All the matches will be result-oriented.”