Australia’s number nine batsman Mitchell Starc played a brilliant innings before being out for 99, caught by MS Dhoni off Ishant Sharma’s bowling. Starc batted for 144 minutes and hit 14 boundaries during his vigil at the crease that frustrated the Indian bowlers. The innings also saw another Aussie, Steven Smith, making 92 in his comeback Test innings. In this feature though we will look at batsmen dismissed for 99 in India-Australia Test clashes over the years.
Bill Brown: Run out for 99, MCG, February 1948
Former Aussie opener Brown was the first ever Test batsman to be dismissed for 99 in India-Australia Tests. In a bizarre turn of events, he got himself run out one short of the coveted mark. He faced 218 balls and hit eight boundaries in a knock that lasted 205 minutes. Australia went on to win the clash by an innings and 177 runs as India collapsed to 67 all out in their second innings.
Pankaj Roy: Caught out for 99, Delhi, December 1959
He was caught by Richie Benaudoff Lindsay Kline’s bowling for the score. This happened during India’s second innings in the Test, when they were bowled out for 206, and went on to lose the match by an innings and 127 runs. India were earlier bowled out for 135 in their first innings, during which Roy made a duck.
Ajit Wadekar: Caught for 99, MGC, January 1968
Another 99 by an Indian coming in a losing cause. Also, this was a the second occasion in 20 years that a batsman for been out for 99 at Melbourne in India-Australia Tests. Courtesy Wadekar’s 99, India managed 352 in their second innings, but still went on to lose the Test by an innings andfour runs. Wadekar’s knock lasted 146 balls during which he hit 12 boundaries. He was caught by Paul Sheahan off Bob Simpson’s bowling.
Ian Chappell: Caught for 99, Kolkata, December 1969
Chappell’s 99 came in a winning cause. In Australia’s first innings in the Test, he batted for 305 minutes and hit 16 fours during his knock. Thanks to Chappell’s knock, Australia made 335 in their first innings, and went on to clinch the game by 10 wickets. Chappell was dismissed caught by Ajit Wadekar off the bowling of Bishen Singh Bedi.
Matthew Hayden: Caught for 99, Brisbane 2003
Hayden’s knock came in the Australia’s second innings of the Test. Australia were looking to set a target for India in the fourth innings, and the burly opener blasted his way to 99 from 98 balls, with the aid of 10 fours and two sixes. He was eventually caught by Virender Sehwag off Harbhajan’s bowling, as the high-scoring match ended in a draw.
Simon Katich: Lbw for 99, Nagpur 2004
Even though Katich failed to get a hundred, his knock maintained Australia’s unique record, that of never losing a Test against India when a batsman from their side had scored 99. Katich’s knock came in Australia’s second innings at Nagpur. He hit 14 fours in his 157-ball knock before being trapped lbw by Murali Kartik. Australia won the Test easily by 342 runs.
--By A Cricket Analyst