Australia wrapped up a 298-run win over India to sweep the series 4-0 early on the final day of the fourth Test at the Adelaide Oval today.
The end was swift with the Australians snapping up the final four wickets in an hour to dismiss India for 201 and inflict a fourth heavy defeat on the demoralised tourists. It was India’s eighth consecutive away Test loss after a 4-0 series loss in England last year and the Indians have not won a series in Australia in 10 visits. Australia’s dominance over India comes a year after their Ashes series humiliation at home to England and their significant improvement under new skipper Michael Clarke, who replaced Ricky Ponting. Australia won by 122 runs in Melbourne, an innings an 68 runs in Sydney and an innings and 37 runs in Perth before their final Adelaide annihilation. Australia’s bowlers, led by pacemen Ben Hilfenhaus (27 wickets) and Peter Siddle (23), dented the reputations of India’s decorated batting lineup with the eight-Test youngster Virat Kohli topping the side’s batting averages with 37.50. Sachin Tendulkar, who failed to bring up his 100th international century, has now gone without a century for 25 Test and one-day innings. His last hundred (111) was in the World Cup last March. Tendulkar finished the series with 287 runs at 35.87, but it was sorry reading for the other batting luminaries. Test cricket’s second all-time highest runscorer Rahul Dravid finished with 194 runs at 24.25, Virender Sehwag 198 at 24.75 and V.V.S. Laxman just 155 at 19.37. India were set an improbable 500-run target for victory in the Adelaide Test off 146 overs after Clarke’s second declaration of the match at 167 for five in their second innings shortly after Friday’s lunch. The highest winning chase at the Adelaide Oval is Australia’s 315 against England in 1902, while India’s highest-ever run hunt was 406 against the West Indies in Trinidad in 1976. But the beleaguered tourists never got close and crashed to 166 for six by stumps leaving the final day’s outcome as a formality under sunny skies. Nightwatchman Ishant Sharma was out on the eighth ball of the last day, caught behind off Ryan Harris for two and he was followed in the next over by Wriddhiman Saha also caught behind off Siddle for three. Zaheer Khan hit out lustily for three fours before he was caught by David Warner at short cover off Hilfenhaus for 15. The final wicket came when Umesh Yadav (1) was caught behind by Haddin for spinner Nathan Lyon’s fourth wicket of the innings. Ravi Ashwin remained 15 not out. Siddle was announced man-of-the-match with six wickets.