WTC Final: The iconic moments and controversies from India vs Australia Tests over years


India vs Australia contests have been lately of huge entertainment. Two of the best sides in the world, over the years, have produced several of moments that have given the fans joy, agony, hope, sadness and much more. With the two sides once again ready to face each other for the Test supremacy in the World Test Championship (WTC) Final, here some of the top moments from India vs Australia over the years:

Victory in Adelaide – India tour of Australia 2003/04

The first Test in Brisbane was drawn. Australia, in the second Test in Adelaide, posted 556 in the fist innings with Ricky Ponting scoring 242. India, in reply, 523 runs – thanks to Rahul Dravid’s 233. Ajit Agarkar then took six wickets as Australia folded for 196 in their second innings, leaving India a target of 230 for their first victory down under in over 20 years.

Rahul Dravid fittingly hit the winning runs as he remained unbeaten on 72 and India won the game by six wickets. The series, which was Steve Waugh’s last, ended in a 1-1 draw.

Monkeygate – India tour of Australia 2007/08

The second Test of the tour in Sydney will always be remembered for the ugly drama between Aussie Andrew Symonds and Indian offie Harbhajan Singh.  Symonds accused Singh of calling him a ‘monkey’ but Harbhajan refused. A formal hearing saw the Indian off spinner getting a three-Test banned. The saga turned so ugly that India wanted to abandon the tour. The BCCI, however, appealed against the ban and it overturned – thus saving the four-match series which Aussies won 2-1.

The match also saw a plethora of umpiring blunders by Steve Bucknor and Mike Benson most of which favored the home side. Former India batsman VVS Laxman defined the umpiring in Sydney as ‘Incompetent’ later in his biography.

Virat Kohli’s miracle in Adelaide, Almost – India tour of Australia 2014/15 

Virat Kohli hit twin tons in his first Test as skipper.

India skipper MS Dhoni didn’t play in the Test – first of the series. Young Virat Kohli led the side. Australia posted 517 runs in the first innings and declared. Kohli scored a ton as India posted 444 in the first innings. Australia was 290/5 with a lead of 363 and declared at the start of day 5.

What followed was unbelievable. Australian couldn’t fathom what was happening nor did us mortal fans. Kohli scored 141 and India needed just 64 runs in about eight overs. India got all-out for 315 but Indians knew the day isn’t far when they’ll win a series down under.

That four-match series, however, ended in India losing 0-2 – the last time it happened.

Brainfade – Australia tour of India 2017/18

Smith's brainfade moment came in 2017/18.

The series was already in controversy for the quality of pitches. And, during the third Test in Bengaluru came the moment of confusion for Steve Smith. A ball from Umesh Yadav kept low and hit Smith on the pad. Unsure whether to review it or not, Smith checked with non-striker Peter Handscomb then looked up at the dressing room. Kohli got furious. Umpires intervened. Smith had to walk back.

Later on, BCCI filed the complaint with the ICC but withdrew it. When asked about the moment, Smith admitted to having ‘brainfade.’

Down under conquered – India tour Australia 2018/19

Virat led India to first ever series win Down Under.

Steve Smith and David Warner both didn’t feature in the series – after being found guilt in Sandpaper gate in South Africa. India, however, went full strength and won the series 2-1. The first ever on the Australian soil. The first ever in 71 years. The first ever since independence. The Aussie fans claimed it doesn’t matter as Australia wasn’t full strength, well, they were in for a reality check, next time.

Breach of Brisbane – India tour of Australia 2020/21

Rishabh Pant hitting winning shot in Brisbane.

India were out for 36 in first Test. India were without six of their front line player – including Virat Kohli and Jasprit Bumrah for most of the series. Two players made debut for India in the fourth Test. The series was 1-1 and Brisbane was the final Test of the four-match series. 

Rishabh Pant drove Josh Hazlewood down the ground for four runs and history repeated itself with India being David this time. The Aussie fans who questioned India’s win last time, well, had to shut up for good now.


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