India took giant strides towards winning their first ever series on Australian soil in seven decades by retaining the Border-Gavaskar Trophy with a comprehensive 137-run win in the third Test on Sunday.
Taking an unassailable 2-1 lead in the four-match series, India will retain the coveted trophy even if the series is drawn level at Sydney as they have won the previous series at home in 2017.
It took only 27 balls on the fifth day afternoon as Jasprit Bumrah (3/53) and Ishant Sharma (2/40) completed the formalities in what turned out to be India’s 150th Test victory.
After losing the first session due to steady showers, Australia could only manage to add three runs to their overnight score of 258 for 8 as they were all out for 261 in 89.3 overs.
Here are some of the statistically highlights from the match
- India thus won a Test match at the iconic MCG after 37 long years when Sunil Gavaskar’s men beat Greg Chappell’s side in the 1980-81 series. Fittingly it was the legendary Kapil Dev, who had then played a major role taking five wickets in defending a low total while it was young Bumrah with match figures of 9 for 86, who was the man-of-the-match on Sunday.
- Bumrah also became the first Indian pacer to take nine wickets in a Test match in Australia.
Best match figures in Australia for Indian pacers
Jasprit Bumrah: 9/86 (Melbourne, 2018)
Kapil Dev: 8/109 (Adelaide, 1985)
Ajit Agarkar: 8/160 (Adelaide, 2003)
Kapil Dev: 8 /163 (Adelaide- 1992)
- Bumrah also finished on the top of the charts for most wickets in 2018 across formats.
Most wickets in 2018 (all formats combined)
|Player||Matches / Innings||Wkts||5 wicket hauls|
|Jasprit Bumrah||30 (39)||78||3|
|Kagiso Rabada||26 (36)||77||2 (One 10 wicket-match haul)|
|Kuldeep Yadav||31 (33)||76||3|
|Adil Rashid||41 (46)||76||1|
|Rashid Khan||29 (29)||72||2|
- This bowling attack combined continued to set records, as the trio of Ishant, Shami and Bumrah finished with a combined total of 136 wickets for the year.
- It was already the best bowling year for India, and it finished on a high.
India's best bowling years
|Year||Matches||Wickets||5 W-innings / 10 W-match|
|2018||14||257||9 / 10|
|1979||17||237||7 / 0|
|2002||16||232||9 / 0|
|2008||15||219||5 / 1|
|2004||12||209||13 / 4|
- The win in Melbourne saw Virat Kohli equal Sourav Ganguly for the most overseas wins as India’s Test captain.
Overseas wins as Indian captain
|Player||Matches played as captain||Matches won|
- This was India’s fourth win outside the sub-continent in 2018 (Johannesburg, Trent Bridge, Adelaide and Melbourne) — the most for them in a calendar year surpassing three in 1968. Those three wins came in New Zealand.
- 2018 also saw the toss play a crucial role, as it turned out in Melbourne (although Tim Paine said he would have bowled first).
- And finally, the importance of Pujara, summed up in one tweet.