New Delhi, Mar. 24 (ANI): India inflicted a series whitewash on Australia on Sunday, thanks to a five wicket haul by left-arm spinner Ravindra Jadeja in the Australian second innings, and a battling unbeaten 82 by opening batsman Chesteswar Pujara in India's second innings while chasing a victory total of 155.
For about the first 200 minutes of the day, it was spiteful spin, posturing, send-offs and some statesmanship. In all, 14 wickets fell for 168 runs on the third day of the final Test at the Ferozeshah Kotla cricket ground.
Apart from Jadeja and Pujara, the other notable performers on the day were Australian off-spinner Nathan Lyon who snared a personal best of 7 for 94, and Peter Siddle became the first No. 9 to score two fifties in a Test.
India on Sunday became only the second team in 43 years to register a four nil scoreline against Australia, the first being South Africa in 1970 against an Australian team led by Bill Lawry.
Set a victory target of 155 in their second innings, the Indians achieved the goal by losing four wickets.
Pujara, opening the innings in the absence of an injured Shikhar Dhawan, scored his second fifty of the match, an unbeaten 82 off 92 on a turning pitch.
The day, however, started off with Lyon removing Ishant Sharma and Pragyan Ojha.
When the Australians came in to bat in their second innings, they had the task of setting India a challenging fourth innings total of between 150 to 200 runs, which experts said would make for a good contest between bat and ball.
The Australians did that part right, scoring 164 and setting a target of 155.
India scored the runs in a canter despite losing the wicket of opener Murali Vijay when the score read 19, while reverse sweeping.
Thereafter, the stage belonged to Pujara and Virat Kohli, who stitched together a century partnership. Pujara and Kohli batted as if the events of the past two-and-a-half days didn't matter at all. It was a display of decisive and determined batting on a minefield of a pitch. There were drives, sweeps and well planned pushes for singles and twos. Australia was guilty of loose balls, overthrows and misfields.
A minor blip interrupted India's progress as three wickets fell for five runs to reduce India to 128 for 4. Pujara, however, brought India level with three successive boundaries, while skipper M.S. Dhoni settled matters with a mid-wicket sweep.
For the Australians, Lyon and Glenn Maxwell claimed two wickets apiece in India's second innings.
The final score is as follows:
India 272 (Vijay 57, Pujara 52, Jadeja 43, Lyon 7-94) and 158 for 4 (Pujara 82*, Kohli 41) beat Australia 262 (Siddle 51, Smith 46, Ashwin 5-57) and 164 (Siddle 50, Cowan 24, Jadeja 5-58) by 6 wickets (ANI)