Anurag Dasgupta ∙ Jan 19 2023, 7:00 AM

#OTD in 2021: India breached 'fortress Gabba' to clinch the Border-Gavaskar series


image-ld2p8hubIndia won the series 2-1 [Source: Twitter]

On this day, two years ago, Team India did the unthinkable and defeated the mighty Australia in the fourth Test at Gabba, Brisbane, to clinch the Border-Gavaskar series, 2-1.

The feat is historical because India achieved the unthinkable in the absence of key players, and against all odds.

The series started with the visitors getting humiliated after getting bowled out for 36 in the first Test at Adelaide. With skipper Virat Kohli gone back home for the birth of his daughter, the onus was on Ajinkya Rahane to lead the under-confident Indian side.

Heading into the fourth Test, the series was evenly poised at 1-1, but Gabba was Australia's famous hunting ground, and they certainly were the favourites heading into the contest.

Several Indian players were battling with injuries which meant that the Rahane led team had an inexperienced bowling attack for this all-important clash. 

How Day 5 panned out

India were set an improbable target of 328, which by no means is an easy feat to achieve in the fourth innings.

India faced an early hurdle when Rohit Sharma was dismissed by Pat Cummins for just 7. Then came the famous partnership between a young, but confident Shubman Gill and the ever-reliant Cheteshwar Pujara.

At times, things were hard to watch as Pujara copped blows after blows on his body, but the veteran batter fought against all the odds and kept on churning out runs for his side.

Gill on the other hand, was the aggressor, and made sure that the momentum was always with the Indian side.

With just 9 runs shy of his maiden Test hundred, Gill threw his wicket away and that shifted the momentum in Australia's favour. Pujara and Rahane fought hard, but the man of the hour was none other than Rishabh Pant. To chase this mammoth total, India needed an X factor, an out of the box knock and that's just what Pant provided.

Rahane chipped in with a quick-fire 24, Pujara was dismissed for 56, but as they say - cometh the hour, cometh the man. Pant took a special liking for Nathan Lyon and took on the Aussie attack with ease. 

Pace, bounce, swing, spin, nothing troubled the dashing southpaw as he kept on pushing for quick runs and struck a sensational 89* of 138 deliveries to steer India to a famous win that'll forever be etched in the history books.

Pant soaked in an incredible amount of pressure and batted with four lower-order batters to take India past the winning line.

For his monumental efforts, Pant was named the Player of the Match.


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