India’s win in Melbourne on Tuesday is one of their best when it comes to fighting against adversities.
TOI lists five of India’s top Test wins, the idea here being striking back after being down and out:
Kolkata 2001, vs Australia (Capt Sourav Ganguly): India had lost the first Test in the series against the ‘invincible’ Aussies and were made to follow on. VVS Laxman’s 281 and Rahul Dravid‘s 180 during their 376-run fifth-wicket partnership set up the 171-run win, Harbhajan Singh taking the first hat-trick by an Indian in Tests and 13 wickets in the process. The win was a game-changer for Indian cricket.
Brief scores: Australia 445 (Harbhajan 7-123) & 212 (Harbhajan 6-73). India 171 & 657/7 (Laxman 281, Dravid 180). India won by 171 runs
The Oval, London 1971 vs England (Capt Ajit Wadekar): India hadn’t won a Test in England before that and they conceded a 71-run first innings lead. Leggie BS Chandrasekhar’s magical 6-38 in the second innings set up one of India’s most iconic Test wins and a series win in England.
Brief scores: England 355 & 101 (Chandrasekhar 6-38). India 284 and 174-6 (Wadekar 45, Sardesai 40, Viswanath 33). India won by 4 wkts.
Port-of-Spain, Trinidad, 1976 vs West Indies (Capt BS Bedi): A 406-run chase in the fourth innings was a world record which stood for 27 years. Gavaskar (102), Amarnath (85) and Viswanath (112) were the architects of the win. Such was the impact that West Indies captain Lloyd lost faith in his spin bowlers.
Brief scores: WI 359 & 271/6 decl. India 228 & 406/4 (Gavaskar 102, Amarnath 85, Viswanath 112). India won by 6 wkts
MCG vs Australia, 1981 (Capt Sunil Gavaskar): Dennis Lillee & Co were all over India in the series and Gavaskar was so angry after being wrongly given out leg-before off Lillee and consequently abused by the Aussies that he staged a walkout. Better sense prevailed and India continued. An injured Kapil Dev (5-28) bowled an inspired spell to bundle out the Aussies for 83 in the second innings as they chased 142 for victory. Viswanath’s 114 in the first innings was also crucial.
Brief scores: India 237 (GR Viswanath 114; D Lillee 4/65) & 324 (C Chauhan 85; Gavaskar 70; D Lillee 4/104). Australia 419 (A Border 124) & 83 (Kapil 5/28). India won by 59 runs.
Perth 2008 vs Australia (Capt Anil Kumble): Coming right after the Monkeygate scandal and a shattering loss in the Sydney Test, the first-ever WACA win was a huge morale-booster for India. There were a lot of highlights. But young Ishant Sharma‘s spell in Australia’s second innings when he removed Ricky Ponting after tormenting him for half an hour was right up there.
Brief scores: India 330 (Dravid 93) & 294 (Laxman 79). Australia 212 (Symonds 66; RP Singh 4/68) & 340 (Clarke 81). India won by 72 runs.