India captain Virat Kohli called winning a series in Australia his proudest ever moment, capping a 12-month journey for his India team of hard graft, fixing mistakes and comradeship.
Their 2-1 triumph achieved what no other Indian side has managed since they started touring to Australia in 1947-48, with the foundations for success laid not in the first Test at Adelaide, but on their tour of South Africa last year.
“The way the bowlers have dictated and dominated, not here but also in England and South Africa, it’s something I haven’t seen before,” said Kohli.
“Hats off to them, the way they’ve prepared, their fitness levels, and their mindset.
“It’s obviously a very proud moment. More so because for the last 12 months we understand what we have gone through as a team, we understand the kind of cricket we have been able to play.
“The fact that the reward has come in the most historic series for Indian cricket is the cherry on top of the cake.”
India have clinched a first-ever series victory in Australia after the fourth Test in Sydney ended in a draw.
Play was called off due to persistent rain on the final day of the Test without a single ball being bowled, the draw giving India a 2-1 series win.
Australia had been due to resume their innings on six for no loss, following on from 300 all out in their first innings and chasing India’s mammoth total of 622 for seven.
It was the third day in a row that play in Sydney was affected by bad light or wet weather, with only 25.2 overs possible on day four on Sunday.
After play was abandoned at 2.30pm local time (3.30am GMT) on Monday, India captain Virat Kohli hailed his team as he spoke of his pride at the historic victory.
Quoted on the International Cricket Council (ICC) website, he said: “Having been to this country three times, to do something that has never been done before is very special.”
He added: “This is just a stepping stone for us. This is a very young side. We have the belief.”
Australia captain Tim Paine said India had “outplayed us in the big moments”.
He was quoted as saying: “I think we have to tip the hat to India. We know how difficult it is to win overseas.”
Pakistan’s batsmen rallied to avoid an innings defeat but South Africa will need just 41 runs on the fourth day of the second Test in Cape Town to wrap up a 2-0 series win.
A century stand between Asad Shafiq and Shan Masood and a dogged 72 from Babar Azam enabled the tourists to reach a respectable 294 in their second innings.
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