India seal fourth Test to humble Oz in series

2013-03-25 00:00

DELHI — India sealed the fourth Test by six wickets, ending at 158 for four, and finished the series 4-0 over Australia on the third day of the fourth and final Test in Delhi yesterday.

Cheteshwar Pujara was there at the end on 82, having faced only 92 deliveries.

He hit 11 fours as he anchored the innings with a calmness that has set him apart ever since his ascent to the Test arena.

He never allowed the Australian bowlers to settle as he took both spinners and seamers to the task.

Captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni (12 not out) hit the winning runs in only the 32nd over, after the team lost both Sachin Tendulkar (one) — for the second time in the Test to Nathan Lyon — and Ajikya Rahane in consecutive overs.

This momentary slump was preceded by the wicket of Virat Kohli, departing for 41.

Earlier, five wickets for Ravindra Jadeja helped India to bowl Australia out for 164 — a winning target of 155 — before tea.

Steven Smith did not last long after lunch, not offering a shot to Ravindra Jadeja’s arm ball that kept low to clatter into his stumps.

Mitchell Johnson became Jadeja’s fifth victim the very next delivery, clean bowled, as he drove at a ball that turned to slip between bat and pad.

Some stunning work from Dhoni behind the stumps brought about the demise of Matthew Wade (19).

Wade left his crease to Pragyan Ojha, but the ball turned sharply into him, bounced off the inside edge of his bat on to his pad past leg stump.

Dhoni dived to his right and clutched the ball with one hand before lunging to his left to break the stumps for good measure.

Peter Siddle (50 off 45 deliveries) fought valiantly, becoming the first number nine batsman to score a half-century in both innings of a Test, but succumbed to Ravichandran Ashwin who lured him outside his crease and Dhoni, behind the wicket, completed the stumping to bring about the end of the innings.

Australia found themselves in deep trouble at lunch having dismissed India for 272 — a negligible 10-run lead.

The hosts have struck back with venom after failing to add much to their overnight score, reducing the visitors to 89 for five, a lead of 79 at the luncheon interval.

Australia were floundering at 53 for five, but Smith and Wade added 41 runs for the sixth wicket before Smith fell just after the break.

India made the most of a track that was producing uneven bounce and spin, with Jadeja striking twice in the first seven overs, first bowling opener Maxwell (eight) with a ripper that turned sharply, kissed the bat before hitting his off stump.

David Warner was next to go, bamboozled by Jadeja’s arm ball which he played back to and was trapped in front of middle stump for eight.

This dismissal sparked some animated send-offs from the Indian players and the umpires had a quiet word with them to calm every­one down.

Phil Hughes and Shane Watson fell to Ashwin and Ojha respectively, with neither batsman reaching double figures.

An over later, Jadeja dismissed Ed Cowan for 24, the batsman also playing back to a ball that spun back to rap his pads.

India resumed the day on 266 for eight, but Nathan Lyon mopped up the tail for only six additional runs to finish with 7-94, producing his third five-wicket haul of his career. SCORES IN BRIEF

Australia 262 and 164

India 272 and 158/4

Result: India won by 6 wickets and claim the

four-match series 4-0

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