India completed a stunning form reversal by sealing an eight-wicket win over Australia on the day four of the second Test at the MCG to draw level at 1-1 in the four-match series.
The tourists’ thumping victory in Melbourne came just over a week after they had slumped to a national-record low total of 36 in an eight-wicket loss to Australia in Adelaide.
India – captained by Ajinkya Rahane in the absence of Virat Kohli, who has flown home for the birth of his child – reached their target of 70 in 15.5 overs after bowling Australia out for 200.
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The visitors lost Mayank Agarwal (5) with the score on 16 and Cheteshwar Pujara (3) with the total on 19 as Mitchell Starc and Pat Cummins struck in the fifth and sixth over respectively.
Rahane, dropped on 19, finished unbeaten on 27 and hit the winning run, fittingly after his first-innings century, while opener Shubman Gill ended 35 not out.
Debutant India seamer Mohammed Siraj led his side off the field at lunch after adding a second-innings 3-37 to 2-40 in Australia’s first knock.
The hosts resumed day four on 133-6 and Pat Cummins (22) and Cameron Green (45) added another 23 before Cummins fended a bouncer from Jasprit Bumrah to second slip, the seventh-wicket partnership ended at 57.
Green was caught at midwicket off Siraj to make it 177-8, before Siraj removed Nathan Lyon (3) eight runs later.
Josh Hazlewood (10) was last man out, offering no shot to be bowled by spinner Ravi Ashwin (2-71), with Starc left stranded on 14.
Australia had elected to bat after wining the toss on Boxing Day but were dismissed for 195 before Rahane’s 112 lifted India to 326 in reply.
The third Test is scheduled to be held in Sydney from January 7, although Cricket Australia is yet to confirm that amid speculation the match may be staged in Melbourne due to the coronavirus pandemic.
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