India posted a memorable 2-1 series win Down Under after trailing 0-1 post the embarrassing loss in Adelaide. Besides, they have to endure many injuries throughout the series, and by the time they reached the decider at Brisbane, they were without their 7 first XI players due to injuries. And they still manage to get the better of Australia at Brisbane to etch out a thrilling 2-1 series win.
So, is this series win the greatest ever by India?
No, India have done better before
India have posted very few comeback series win after trailing 0-1. They did so in the 2001 Test series against Australia at home (2-1), and the 2015 Test series against Sri Lanka (2-1) in Sri Lanka. Both were three-match series. But in the 2020-21 series Down Under, was a four-match series, and hence, India have had an extra one Test match cushion to grab a 2-1 series win. They did well to draw the Sydney Test. A loss there would have robbed all chances of winning the series in Brisbane. But in the previous 2-1 series wins, India lost the first Test and came back strongly to win the next two Tests, and pocket the series 2-1.
The 2-1 series win in 2001 was even better
In 2001, no one gave India a chance after India were forced to follow on in the Eden Gardens Test in Kolkata after losing the first Test in Mumbai. But two batsmen – VVS Laxman and Rahul Dravid – and a bowler – Harbhajan Singh – produced their life's best performance to win a match out of jaws of certain defeat. And in the next Test at Chennai, India fought tooth and nail to eke out a 2-wicket win and seal the series 2-1.
Yes, as India overcame all challenges on their way to seal the win
Missing 7 first-XI players, including best batsman and regular captain Virat Kohli, going into the decider against the world's top team, and that too in overseas conditions, and still going on to the win the match at Brisbane, and pocket the series 2-1 require some special mention, and a place right at the top of greatest Test series win. Besides, India were coming off a disastrous outing at Adelaide, faced sledging, racial abuse, and tough quarantine to win the series. It is nothing but the greatest Test series victory ever.
It is debatable whether the 2020-21 series win over Australia is the best ever, but it is true that it is one of the best series victories ever.
Cover image photo courtesy: Indian Cricket Team Facebook page