India posted a historic 2-1 Test series win in Australia under the leadership of Virat Kohli. It was India’s maiden Test series win Down Under. With this series win, India have shut down all criticism of being lions at home and lambs abroad.
Indian skipper Virat Kohli has even gone on to say that this triumph is the biggest achievement of his
career, ranking even higher than 2011 World Cup triumph. Since 2000, India have improved on their overseas records, first under Sourav Ganguly, followed by Rahul Dravid, MS Dhoni and now Virat Kohli.
Cricwizz takes a look at the top seven overseas Test wins for India since the turn of the century.
India beat Pakistan 2-1 in 2003-04 under Ganguly/Dravid
India were touring Pakistan after almost 15 years under much better conditions off the field. The tour was organised to bridge the relationship between the two warring nations. India, under Sourav Ganguly and Rahul Dravid, created history to win their maiden Test series (2-1) in Pakistan.
The series created a few batting records with Virender Sehwag becoming the first Indian to score a triple ton at Multan. The same Test was marred by Rahul Dravid’s untimely innings declaration which saw Sachin
Tendulkar stranded on 194. India won the Multan Test by an innings, but Pakistan came back strongly to win the second Test at Lahore.
Ganguly returned for the third Test at Rawalpindi and saw India home with 2-1 series win. Rahul Dravid scored 270 to guide India to record 600 in the first innings at Rawalpindi. India won the match by an innings and 131 runs and sealed the series 2-1.
India beat West Indies 1-0 under Dravid in 2006
India beat England 1-0 under Dravid in 2007
Indian batsmen have always struggled in the swinging and pace-friendly conditions in England. And India were set a daunting task in the tour of England in 2007. India had a strong leader in Rahul Dravid as the team batted England out of the series in 2007 with a 1-0 win.
India were lucky to have their best batting line-up, comprising Dravid, Sachin Tendulkar, VVS Laxman and Sourav Ganguly, in the tour. They also had a great pace bowling line-up in Zaheer Khan, RP Singh and S Sreesanth and a
champion spinner in Anil Kumble.
India went with the same playing XI in all the three Tests and their moment of glory came in the second Test at Nottingham. Zaheer Khan was the architect of the win, taking 9 wickets in the Nottingham Test. India then batted out England in the third Test at London, putting up record 664 to draw the match and win the series 1-0.
India beat New Zealand 1-0 under Dhoni in 2008/09
This series is known for India’s resoluteness to save a 1-0 lead after winning the first Test at Hamilton, thanks to a match-winning ton (160) from Sachin Tendulkar. In the second Test at Napier, India were in arrears by 314 runs following on. India then produced their best batting display of the series to draw the match and save a 1-0 lead going into the third Test.
Gautam Gambhir produced the best knock of his life, hitting 137 off 463 balls, batting for over 10 hrs, following on to draw the second Test. India played out 180 overs or two full days to score 476/4 in the second innings and save their 1-0 lead.
In the third Test at Wellington, Gambhir again came to the party, scoring 167. New Zealand managed to stave off defeat, ending second innings at 281/8 chasing 617 for a series-levelling win.
India beat Sri Lanka 2-1 under Kohli in 2015
Sri Lanka were always tough to beat at home. They had a champion spinner in Muttiah Muralitharan and few world-class batsmen in Mahela Jayawardene and Kumar Sangakkara. But the 2015 series had neither Jayawardene and Muttiah while Sangakkara declared it was his last Test series.
It was the first full-fledged Test tour of Virat Kohli as Test captain and expectations were high. India began poorly though, losing the first Test at Galle, thanks to the brilliance from Dinesh Chandimal who struck a match-winning 162*. India lost despite taking a 192-run first-innings lead.
India came back strongly to win the next two Tests and the series 2-1. In the next two Tests, India batsmen and spinners R Ashwin and Amit Mishra made life miserable for Sri Lanka to beat the islanders in Test series at their home just for the second time. Pujara carried his bat through with 145* in the first innings in the third Test, while R Ashwin bagged man of the series with 21 wickets.
India beat Sri Lanka 3-0 under Kohli in 2017
Although Sri Lanka were the weakest team in Test cricket in 2017, they are known to be a formidable force at home where flat and spin-friendly tracks favour their batsmen and bowlers. But Virat Kohli-led India proved that they were too good for them, blanking them out 3-0 in the Test series in the island nation.
India posted two innings win out of three as they posted three scores of 400 and more. It was easily the tour of Indian batsmen who raked up 7 tons in 4 innings. Shikhar Dhawan was player of the series. India went on to complete 9-0 whitewash of Sri Lanka across format in this tour to make their best-ever performance in an away tour.
India beat Australia 2-1 under Kohli in 2018/19
India have never won a Test series in Australia before this tour. And India had a great chance to do so as Australia were without their star batsmen in David Warner and Steve Smith due to ball tampering. India won the first match at Adelaide, the first time they had ever won the first Test in a series Down Under. Cheteshwar Pujara was the architect of the win, scoring 123 and 71. But Australia bounced back to win the second Test at Perth.
But India were motivated and up for the task in the Boxing Day Test at Melbourne. Once again, Pujara came to India’s rescue, scoring a brilliant 106 to help India take a 2-1 series lead.
The fourth Test at Sydney ended in a draw as India sealed their maiden Test series win in Australia. Pujara scored his third ton of the series – 193 – at Sydney. He was given the man of the series award for his dour batting. Indian bowlers did well to bowl out Australia on all the seven completed innings. But it was Pujara’s batting which made the difference.