#OTD in 1971: India won it’s first ever series on English soil

image-l77bivmqAjit Wadekar waiving at the crowd [PC: Twitter]

On this day in 1971, Team India created history under the leadership of Ajit Wadekar and won their first ever Test series in England. It was indeed a historic day when India beat England in the third and the final Test by 4 wickets to clinch the series 1-0.

How the game unfolded

England won the toss and elected to bat first. India got the early inroad, but the duo of John Jameson and John Edrich stitched a 106-run partnership for the second wicket and took the attack to the opposition. Crucial contributions from Alan Knott (90), and Richard Hutton (81) took England’s first innings total to a respectable 355.

England bowlers bamboozle India

image-l77bq9dqRay Illingworth

In reply, India lost both Sunil Gavaskar and Ashok Mankad cheaply, but skipper Ajit Wadekar and Dilip Sardesai brought India right back in the contest. However, England roared back strongly and a 5-wicket haul from Ray Illingworth restricted India to 284.

Indian bowlers come to life

England had a 71 run lead, heading into the second innings. The pitch had flattened out and England looked all set for a mammoth total. But Bhagwath Chandrashekhar spun the web around the England batters and grabbed 6 for 38 to rattle England for a mere 101.

History made by Team India

image-l77bv856Abid Ali lifted by the fans after sealing the victory

Chasing 173 to write their name in the history books, India lost Sunil Gavaskar for a duck, but Ajit Wadekar (45) once again stood tall alongside Dilip Sardesai (40), and Gundappa Vishwanath (33) steered India past the winning line with 4 wickets to spare

Also Read: #OTD in 2015: Kumar Sangakkara bid farewell to international cricket