Virat Kohli and Co end their Test cricket year with four out of four series wins
Virat Kohli & Co end their Test cricket year with four out of four series wins (v Aus, WI, SA and now Bangladesh) as India's inaugural pink ball game ends in an innings victory at Eden.
Kolkata: The 25,000 who turned up on the Eden terraces on Sunday would surely have hoped for resistance to the imminent Indian victory in the historic pink-ball Test here. It was not to be, as beleaguered Bangladesh surrendered and slumped to another embarrassing defeat. Overnight 152 for six and needing another 89 to have the hosts bat again, Bangladesh managed just 43 in the 8.4 overs they lasted on Day Three, handing the hosts victory by an innings and 46 runs. This, Virat Kohli & Co ended their Test cricket year with four out of four series wins. In fact, they did not lose a Test in the year and their last loss was against Australia in the Perth Test held from December 14 to 18 last year.
India had set things up on Saturday by scoring 347 for 9 declared in reply to a pathetic 106 by the visitors in the first innings. Bangladesh 'improved' to 195 for 9 in the second, the injured Mahmudullah deciding not to resume his innings, but it still fell way short. Bangladesh began Day Three on the wrong note. New man Ebadot Hossain, who survived the remaining three deliveries of Umesh in typical tailender style, left in the pacer's next over, fending off a rising delivery to be caught in the slips.
It was the sort of stroke that summed up the Bangladesh batting in the face of some hostile pace bowling. Fear was a factor, as was the obvious lack of technique and temperament. Umesh would go on to complete a five-for even as Man of the Series Ishant Sharma added to his five from the first innings to finish with a match haul of nine. The experienced Mushfiqur Rahim, who had kept the dying embers of hope glowing with a patient 59 on Saturday, abandoned that approach for an aggressive one. It fetched a few boundaries but his also his wicket. His 74 had 13 fours.
The domination of pace in the Indian attack was underlined once more as the two spinners came back empty-handed and with a small slice of the bowling. India have thus won four consecutive matches by an innings, and enjoy their best-ever winning streak of seven. As it often happens, Kohli scored an imperious hundred at an iconic venue. On Sunday, he revealed a tip which batting titan Sachin Tendulkar gave him. "He [Tendulkar] made very interesting points that probably with the pink ball, you'll have to treat the second session like the morning session, when it's getting darker and the ball starts to swing and seam. So first session, you invariably play like you play from lunch to tea, in a normal timing," said Kohli.
And about pundits comparing his team and pace attack with the feared West Indies line-up of the 1970s and 1980s, the skipper said: "I can only say we are at the top of our game. You can't judge a team's dominance with just seven games — seven years, yes."
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