Australia skipper Tim Paine said that his side failed to capitalise on their chances and let them slip while Indian players stood up to the challenge and won the key moments which allowed them to get over the line in the final Test of the series at The Gabba on Tuesday. “We are absolutely disappointed. Whether it was with bat, ball or in the field, every time we had a chance to go ahead of the game, we let it slip. Yesterday, we continuously lost wickets, when we were trying to put our foot down and could not get quite a partnership together. And everytime when India needed to take a wicket, someone managed to do it for them. So, you got to give them the credit,” Paine said in the post-match press conference.
“They won the key moments. We turned up in Sydney on Day 5 and on Gabba on Day 5 in good positions but could not get the job done. There are some things we should and could have done better. But at the same time, I think India on both these occasion were great with the bat,” he added.
It took 32 years and two months, but the unthinkable was achieved on Tuesday as an injury-ravaged young Indian team defeated Australia by three wickets against all odds in the final Test to take the series 2-1.
Rishabh Pant will be forgiven for all the mistakes he made through the series with wicket-keeping gloves in hand as each of the 89 runs that he scored in the final hour on Tuesday was worth its weight in gold. It was only poetic justice that he hit a boundary to win India a thriller.
Praising Pant, Paine said: “Rishabh, in particular, is so skillful. He can hit the ball absolutely everywhere from any line or length.”
Paine also hailed the visitors’ bench strength and said: “Whether they were big name players or not, they showed that they have got some depth and some very good skillful bowlers and batsmen. They outplayed us, I do not think we took them lightly. They are a really proud cricket country and got a huge population and a lot of skillful players to pick from. The guys who came in, they played their role.”
The last time a visiting team came out triumphant from the Brisbane Cricket Ground was back in November 1988 when the mighty West Indian outfit under the leadership of Viv Richards thrashed Allan Border’s team by 9 wickets. What makes the feat even more commendable is how the Indians fought multiple injuries and mental fatigue – due to the bio-bubble restrictions — to register a historic win.
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