Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : January 11th 2015 Contents A45
January 11, 2015 www.guardian.co.tt Sunday Guardian
SYDNEY---Indian wickets tumbled in a dramatic
final session of the fourth Test before the visitors
hung to claim a draw against Australia at the Sydney
Cricket Ground yesterday, limiting the series defeat
Australia claimed five wickets in the final session
and looked capable of pulling off a victory but Ajinkya
Rahane (38 not out) and Kumar Bhuvneshwar (20 not
out) hung on in the final overs to avoid defeat, with
the visitors finishing on 252-7.
Mitchell Starc took 2-36, including the prize wicket
of India captain Virat Kohli for 46, and Josh Hazlewood
(2-31) dismissed top scorer Murali Vijay for 80 to give
the hosts a shot at victory before being frustrated by
the final pair.
"It would have been nice to have got the win today,"
said Australia captain Steve Smith. "I thought 90 overs
and them having a little dip at us with the bat, I
thought we were going to be a good chance to win
this game, but today wasn t to be."
"The wicket didn t break up quite as much as I
thought it would, there wasn t much up and down
movement with balls that were on the stumps."
Smith had declared the hosts second innings at
the overnight score of 251-6, setting India 349 runs
from 90 overs---an ambitious target on a pitch exhibiting
uneven bounce and turn on the final day.
"They ve been playing some good Test cricket for
a while and they are always competitive," said Kohli.
"They could have easily given us two sessions to bat
today but they gave us three."
India lost only two wickets in the first two sessions:
Nathan Lyon (2-110) deceived Lokesh Rahul (16) with
extra bounce and the first innings centurion was hit
on the gloves, looping the ball to David Warner at leg
slip, then Rohit Sharma (39) was brilliantly caught by
a diving Smith at slip off Shane Watson (1-22).
Vijay combined with Kohli for a 74-run partnership
in nearly 23 overs before the innings quickly unrav-
Vijay edged Hazlewood to Brad Haddin just after
tea to open the door for the hosts.
Starc then removed Kohli, swinging the ball away
from the new India captain, taking the edge which
was caught by Watson diving low to his right.
Three balls into Starc s next over he trapped new
batsman Suresh Raina lbw for his second duck of the
match to leave India suddenly in trouble at 203-5.
Wriddhiman Saha was also dismissed without scor-
ing, with Lyon trapping the wicketkeeper lbw after
the ball stayed low.
Hazlewood then had Ravi Ashwin lbw for one, with
replays showing umpire Richard Kettleborough correctly
adjudged the ball would have hit leg stump.
Australia crowded the last remaining pair, with nine
fielders in close catching positions, but could make
no further inroads.
"It s been very satisfying to see people like Ajinkya,
Rahul, Vijay, Rohit in this game stepping up the right
time and showing a lot of character and composure
to go out there and make runs against very good bowl-
ing," said Kohli. "The guys stood there, dug it out and
pulled out a draw which is satisfying."
Australia won the series 2-0, and regained the Bor-
der-Gavaskar trophy, after victories in the first two
tests in Adelaide and Brisbane respectively, and draws
in Melbourne s third Test and final Test in Sydney.
"I m extremely proud of the boys," said Smith, who
was named both man of the match and series. "To
win that first test match was extremely big for us to
start the series off well and throughout the series there
have been tough moments and the boys the way
they ve held them throughout the series has been ter-
India holds on for draw
vs Australia in 4th Test
ar trophy after
on the fifth
day of their
match is a
the series 2-0.
New captains Smith, Kohli breaking records
NZ battles expectations,
SL fights indifferent form
Seven-match ODI series usually
prompt groans from all but tour-
nament broadcasters and host
boards, but with the World Cup
close enough to salivate on, New
Zealand and Sri Lanka kick off their
final phase of preparation, in con-
ditions that should be similar to
those they encounter in February
For now, New Zealand will be pro-
ducing more drool at the prospect
of a World Cup. They are soaring
on good vibes from an outstanding
Test series, their batsmen and
bowlers are in form, combined with
perhaps the best fielding outfit in
the world. Perennial dark-horses in
world tournaments in the past, now
they are among the bonafide
They have the advantage of play-
ing at home for the next few months,
but with that comes expectation.
There is significant public pressure
on New Zealand to do well in a home
World Cup. That it was at Hagley
Oval where Brendon McCullum
made a whirlwind 195 and Trent
Boult bowled several high-quality
spells, albeit all in another format,
may add to the team s confidence.
Sri Lanka s returns have been a
little more mixed in the past four
months. They handed out a token
thrashing to England at home, but
had been steamrolled by India a few
weeks prior. Collectively, they will
be distraught at having lost the Tests
0-2, but individually, there were
some bright performances from men
who are expected to play key roles
in the ODIs.
Lahiru Thirimanne s unbeaten
Wellington fifty will be particularly
heartening, as he and Angelo Math-
ews seek to make a troublesome
lower middle-order secure, while
Dimuth Karunaratne s 152 in
Christchurch has effectively earned
him a World Cup berth, and created
a new opening option for Sri Lanka.
Tim Southee has been rested for
the first two matches, owing in part
to his heavy workload in the Tests.
Matt Henry has been called into the
squad as cover.
Ross Taylor will also have the first
game off and may have his place
filled by Grant Elliott. New Zealand
also have both Nathan McCullum
and Daniel Vettori in their squad,
but only one of them is likely to play
today. Mitchell McClenaghan, Adam
Milne and Kyle Mills may also be
competing for two spots.
Sri Lanka will want to trial Dimuth
Karunaratne as opener, which means
Mahela Jayawardene will bat at No
4. They may also reintroduce Nuwan
Kulasekara into the XI, after solid
performances in domestic cricket.
They might also toy with the idea
of playing an extra batsman or all-
rounder, and rely on Angelo Math-
ews and Tillakaratne Dilshan to make
up the remaining overs.
SYDNEY---India may have hung on to claim a draw
against Australia at the Sydney Cricket Ground yes-
terday, limiting the series defeat to 2-0, but the four-
Test series will be remembered more for the per-
formances of opposing young captains Virat Kohli
of India and Australia s Steve Smith.
Kohli scored four tons in the series, an effort matched
by Australia s stand-in skipper Steve Smith, who is
the heir apparent to the injured Michael Clarke as
permanent captain, and as young leaders they may
be establishing a longstanding rivalry.
Smith was named man of the series after an aggre-
gate of 769 runs---with four hundreds and two half-
centuries---which surpassed Don Bradman s record of
715 runs in five Tests in 1947-48 as the most runs in
an Australia-India series.
The 25-year-old s 117 in the fourth test also matched
the feats of Bradman (vs. South Africa in 1931-32) and
South Africa great Jacques Kallis (vs. West Indies in
2003-04) in scoring four hundreds in four consecutive
Tests of a series. "It s been a pretty special summer
for me personally, with some of the results that I ve
got," Smith said after his latest hundred. "I ve felt
good throughout the whole series. I m really happy
with where my form is at and my approach to batting
at the moment." (AP)
Links Archive January 10th 2015 January 12th 2015 Navigation Previous Page Next Page