Following his side's series loss to India, Australia skipper Steve Smith said that the wicket was too flat at Ahmedabad to force a result and his side started playing better cricket as the series went on.
Half-centuries from Travis Head and Marnus Labuschagne helped Australia draw the fourth and final Test of the ongoing Border-Gavaskar Trophy against India at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad on Monday.
"Did end slowly. Was a pretty flat at the back end. The boys had a great time. The hospitality has been amazing. The crowd has been amazing. We started to play better as the series went on. The madness in one hour in Delhi cost us that game. The wicket here was too flat for us to force a result. The spinners bowled really well. Murphy and Kuhnemann bowled with composure. Lyon bowled his best in the first innings here, the best I have seen him bowl. I am getting a bit old (on asked if he will be touring India in four years time)," said Smith in a post-match presentation.
This Border-Gavaskar Trophy was not overwhelming for Smith. In four matches and seven innings, he could score only 145 runs at an average of 29.00. His best individual score in the series was 38.
With this, India has won the four-match Test series by 2-1.
Australia started the final day of the match at 3/0, with Matt Kuhnemann (0*) and Travis Head (3*) unbeaten. They had the responsibility to overcome the 88-run lead that India had in the match.
After Ravichandran Ashwin trapped Kuhnemann early for just 6, Head joined forces with number one Test batter Marnus Labuschagne to give Australia the lead.
The duo put on a 139-run stand for the second wicket before Axar removed Head for 90. Labuschagne scored an unbeaten 63 and along with stand-in captain Steve Smith (10*), helped the side draw the match and end their innings at 175/2.
Earlier, India gained a 91-run lead over Australia after they were bundled out for 571 in their first innings.
Virat Kohli brought an end to his century drought in Test cricket, scoring his 75th international century and his 28th in Tests. This was his first century in Tests since November 2019. In his marathon effort, he scored 186 runs in 364 balls, consisting of 15 fours.
Shubman Gill also scored a century, smashing 128 runs in 235 balls. Axar (79), KS Bharat (44) and Cheteshwar Pujara (42) also played some important knocks, which helped India gain a lead over Australia.
Todd Murphy (3/113) and Nathan Lyon (3/151) were the pick of the bowlers for Australia. Mitchell Starc and Matt Kuhnemann got a wicket each. lead over Australia.
In their first innings, Australia posted 480 runs. Usman Khawaja (180) and Cameron Green (114) posted stunning centuries to help the Aussies gain a massive advantage earlier in the match.
Ravichandran Ashwin was the pick of the bowlers, taking 6/91 on a surface offering no help to spinners.Virat Kohli was adjudged as the 'Man of the Match' for his knock of 186 runs.
Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja, India's star spin all-rounder duo were given the 'Men of the Series' award for their heroics throughout the series.
Ashwin ended as the top wicket-taker in the series with 25 wickets, with the best bowling figures of 6/91. He also scored useful 86 runs in five innings throughout the series with the best score of 37.
Jadeja also emerged as the second-highest wicket-taker in the series, with a total of 22 scalps and best figures of 7/42. He also scored 135 runs in five innings with one half-century and the best score of 70.
Brief Scores: India 571 (Virat Kohli 186, Shubman Gill 128, Todd Murphy 3/113) vs Australia 480 and 175/2 (Travis Head 90, Marnus Labuschagne 63*, Axar Patel 1/36). (ANI)