Young blood wins for India; Virat Kohli, Cheteshwar Pujara, R Ashwin show they belong
- Anti-corruption unit will now monitor access to players: BCCI
- Counter-terrorism to top Indo-US Security dialogue agenda: Sushilkumar Shinde
- IPL 2013 LIVE SCORE: Pune Warriors bat, Ashok Dinda back
- Chinese Premier Li Keqiang arrives today, PM to seek early revival of border talks
- Telangana very much part of UPA national agenda: P C Chacko
When Virat Kohli walked out at the fall of Sachin Tendulkar's wicket — his stumps knocked back by an incoming delivery for the third time in as many innings this series — India were 152/3, still 109 adrift. Just a series back, it would have been VVS Laxman at No. 5 — coming in to bear the responsibility of steering India home in another difficult chase, the kind of effort that the man had over the years made his trademark.
But VVS wasn't missed at the Chinnaswamy on Monday. Virat Kohli, 23 years and 10 Tests old, led India to a 2-0 series victory with a show of batsmanship that earned for him praise that he is likely to cherish more than the Man of the Match award.
"On current form," Rahul Dravid, the other irreplaceable legend who retired this year, said on television, "Kohli is the best batsman in the Indian team across formats."
If the big talking point before this series had been the retirements of Dravid and Laxman, then the loud buzz after its conclusion was on how young feet have filled those massive boots. Kohli, who scored 212 runs and averaged 107 in the series, shares the limelight with Cheteshwar Pujara and Ravichandran Ashwin.
Pujara, the boy from Saurashtra who took Dravid's slot at number three, showed immense maturity coming back into the Test side after a 19-month absence. He topped the scoring charts across both teams with 216 runs in the series, hitt the 159 in Hyderabad that helped India win by an innings, and got 48 invaluable runs in Monday's fourth innings chase.
Pujara's affinity for fierce strokes through the square on the off is already being spoken of in the same breath as Laxman's famous whip through midwicket.
As for Man of the Series Ashwin, he has perhaps permanently bolted the door on the spinner who is the highest wicket-taker in Test matches playing today: Harbhajan Singh. Ashwin, 25, now has 49 wickets in 8 Tests at 26.63, and stands on the verge of becoming the fastest Indian to 50 Test wickets.
- Quake-hit and shaken, Bhaderwah spends nights in the open
- UP blast accused dies on way to jail, govt wanted to drop case against him
- Former civil aviation secy changes mind, seeks airport security exemption as EC
- BCCI suspects Gujarat players in other teams were also approached
- Police on money trail, Sreesanth in fresh trouble
- Chhattisgarh 'encounter' leaves 8 villagers dead, no Maoist link yet