|Australia 263 (Khawaja 81, Handcomb 72; Shami 4-60) & 113 (Jadeiah 7-42)|
|India 262 (Axar 74; Lyons 5-67) & 118-4 (Pujara 31*, Rohit 31)|
|India won by six wickets, leading the series 2-0|
India beat Australia for the second straight Test in three days to retain the Border Gavaskar trophy after Delhi tourists capitulated.
With a score of 61-1 – a margin of 62 – Australia collapsed again to 113 against India’s outstanding spinners.
Ravindra Jadeja claimed a Test best 7-42 and Ravichandran Ashwin 3-59 to leave India, needing just 115.
They completed a six-wicket victory before the tea as Cheteshwar Pujara hit the winning runs in his 100th Test.
After Victory by one innings and 132 runs in the first Test, India now have an unassailable 2-0 lead in the four-Test series, with the third game starting in Indore on 1 March.
This means that India has secured the Border Gavaskar trophy for the fourth year in a row.
Australia started narrowly ahead on Sunday exciting second day as Axar Patel and Ashwin helped India recover from 139-7 on post 262 – a first-innings deficit of one – before the tourists batted well and ended up losing just one wicket.
However, their hopes of an impressive lead on a tricky, winding pitch were quickly dashed.
Travis Head outpaced Ashwin after adding four to his overnight 39, while Steve Smith was off-spinner lbw, one of several Australian batsmen fired when attempting sweeps or reverse sweeps despite the low bounce.
At one point, the Tourists lost four wickets on no-runs in 11 balls, falling from 95-3 to 95-7.
Marnus Labuschagne was bowled over by a Jadeja delivery that stayed low, Matt Renshaw missed an expansive sweep to be pinned by Ashwin with lbw, and Jadeja removed Peter Handscomb and Pat Cummins with back-to-back deliveries.
Handscomb grabbed a fine delivery to slip but the sending off of Australia captain Cummins – who bowled the first ball and unfurled an ugly slog sweep – embodied his side’s failings in technique.
Jadeja took the last three wickets to complete Australia’s humiliation.
“This one is particularly disappointing as he was ahead of the game many times,” Cummins said.
“These opportunities don’t come often in India, so you have to seize them. This one hurts a bit.”
When asked how best to meet the challenges of the pitch, Pujara said, “The sweep is not an ideal shot because it has little bounce.
“If you can try to get to the ballfield or play with your back foot, it’s better to play on turning lanes.
“It’s a bit difficult in the early stages and you have to figure out how to manage the spin, but once you’re facing 30 or 40 balls it’s a good place to hit.”
India faltered at points in their comeback, falling to 6-1 when KL Rahul’s flick ricocheted off Handscomb’s short leg to be caught by wicketkeeper Alex Carey and 39-2 when captain Rohit Sharma retired after being mistaken for Pujara.
But Pujara’s alert 31 not-outs anchored the innings while goaltender KS Bharat added 23-of-22-ball unbeaten flow.
“I knew if I played through the first few minutes of my innings, I would be there by the end,” Pujara said.
“My family is here watching the game and it’s a special feeling to reach the final frontier in a winning cause.
“We knew they were going to come at us hard but we showed a lot of patience – our bowlers were amazing.”
The series will help decide who qualifies for the Test World Cup final at The Oval in June, with Australia needing to draw one of the final two Tests to secure a spot.
India are second in the standings and will qualify if they win 3-1 or better in this series.
Australia could be without David Warner for the remainder of the series after the opener was pulled out of the second Test with a concussion and also sustained a broken elbow.