(Last Updated on : 27/01/2015)
The India-Australia Melbourne Test, 1985 is remembered as a match that saw the Indian team playing with great determination and encouragement. It was the second match of the 3-match Test series between the two teams and India was quite confident of having a good show in the match, as the first match was drawn. The Australian team also wanted to play well in the match and prevent the Indians from winning the match and also taking a lead in the series. However, the match eventually finished as a drawn one and the series remained 0-0, after the match.
Winning the toss, the Indian skipper Kapil Dev decided to invite the Australian team to bat first in the match. He actually wanted his bowlers to utilise the moisture and freshness of the Melbourne pitch in the morning. Put into bat first, the Australia team got a bad start, as the Indian bowlers maintained their line and length perfectly. The bowlers were bowling with good discipline and as a result, they became successful to pick up Australia wickets in regular intervals. NS Yadav and Shastri did the most of the damage for the Australians and Australia lost their first 6 wickets within the score of only 127 runs. After that, the two Aussie batsmen, Bright and Matthews made a good partnership of 66 runs and took the score to 193 runs. However, as none of the other Australian batsmen could play well, the first innings of Australia ended on 262 runs. Only Matthews could show some resistance for Australia, as he remained unbeaten on 100 runs. Shastri took 4 wickets for 87 runs, on behalf of India and Yadav took 3 wickets for 64 runs.
After successfully restricting Australia to only 262 runs in their first innings, the Indians batted wonderfully in their first innings. The Indian batsmen were playing with good control and showed resistance in front of the Australian bowlers and almost all of them played well in the first innings. Though the Indian team lost its first wicket on the score of 15 runs, the opener K Srikkanth and legendary batsman, Mohinder Amarnath made a good partnership in the second wicket. They together scored 101 runs and safely rescued the team from the early wicket loss. Srikkanth played an attacking innings and scored 85 runs from only 89 balls. Amarnath continued playing good after the departure of Srikkanth and he got good support from Dilip Vengsarkar. After Amarnath got out on his individual score of 45 runs, Vengsarkar played the anchor role for India and scored 75 runs. As the other Indian batsmen like Azharuddin (37), Shastri (49), Kapil Dev (55) and Syed Kirmani (35) also made their own contributions; India finished its first innings on a good score of 445 runs. India took a lead of 183 runs over Australia in the first innings.
The Australia team showed a much improved performance in the second innings and in spite of the Indian bowlers bowling well, they scored 300+ runs in the innings. Allan Border was the star for Australia in the second innings and he almost single handedly took the team's total to a comfortable position. He scored 163 runs in the innings and though none of the other Australian batsmen could do well in the innings, Australia's second innings finished on 308 runs. Shastri once again bowled brilliantly for India in the innings and took 4 wickets for 92 runs. Yadav also accompanied him well wonderfully, just like the first innings and took 3 wickets for 84 runs.
India started batting in the second innings with a target of 125 runs to get; however, there was a clear shortage of time for India in achieving the target. In spite of having less time, the Indian batsmen gave a good effort to achieve the target. The two openers provided the team a good start by making an opening partnership of 39 runs. Srikkanth was playing with aggressiveness in the innings and he scored 38 runs from only 61 balls. However, the other Indian opener, Gavaskar scored only 8 runs from 54 balls in the innings and as the other batsmen did not get the time, India's second innings eventually finished on 59-2. The match eventually ended on a draw, however, the Indian captain Kapil Dev did have some complaints about the umpiring in the match.