Sachin Tendulkar: (Outstanding)
2 Tests, 403 runs @ 134.33, a double hundred along with a 98 and a 53* The fourth innings 38, where he still ended up as the second highest scorer for India in the successful chase, was his lowest score. This performance deserves the top-most grade that is out there in the world. His 2010 dream run continues, I hope Mr. Ian Chappell is watching.
VVS Laxman: (A+)
Marvelous knock (73*) and stupendous efforts in leading team India to an unbelievable chase in the 1st test match. In spite of aching bad back he answered the nation’s call and delivered yet again. Sight of Australians must mean something to him as he has scored 30% of his career runs against that one nation. If it was not for his heroics in the first test, India wouldn’t be looking at a series win here.
Zaheer Khan: (A+)
The King of reverse swing is back with a bang. Leading wicket taker for his team on these sub-continental pitches. He was the true leader of the bowling attack and tormented the Aussies with one that came in late, if you don’t believe me ask Marcus North and Mitchell Johnson.
Cheteshwar Pujara: (A)
This dude rocks!!! Awesome debut, in spite of being unlucky in the first innings, he grabbed the opportunity with both hands in the second. Unfortunate to miss out on what would have been a first ever ton by a debutant in the fourth innings of a test.
Prgyan Ojha: (A)
Bowled tirelessly and held a tight line and length. Was a perfect foil to the other bowlers as he choked one end up. His three wickets in the second innings at Bangalore were crucial. His other vital effort came in as he hung around with VVS for those final 11 runs in the tense finish of the first test. Bravo Ojha!!
MS Dhoni: (A)
His batting was lackluster in this series, but his leadership was at the top. Barring losing the toss on the two occasions, captain Mahi could do no wrong out in the field. Each of his move paid rich dividends: introduction of spin early on day one at Bangalore, handing the ball over to Raina to grab Ponting’s wicket, and promoting Pujara at #3.
Murali Vijay: (A-)
Graduated to the big leagues now, had the great experience of a huge partnership with the God himself. Vijay now makes a demanding case for his inclusion in the playing eleven.
Ishant Sharma: (A-)
They say you get an A for an effort. Ishant combined the efforts with temperament and application. He struggled with his run-up resulting into no balls and loss of rhythm on day 1 of the series and compounded that with a knee injury, however came back the next day as his team needed a fourth bowler badly. Bowled magnificently in the second innings and triggered the Australian collapse. In the end played much like an experienced top-order batsman in the crucial 81-run 9th wicket stand with VVS.
Suresh Raina: (B+)
He may have only played four tests so far, however, the confidence he exudes appears to be like a veteran. Made a vital partnership with Sachin in the first innings at Mohali that kept team India in the game, and had he batted a bit longer in the first innings at Bangalore, India would have sealed that game much earlier.
Harbhajan Singh: (B+)
11 wickets in the series, however, he was clearly far from his best and never looked threatening. He definitely appeared to be a lot better than his recent efforts. He is the lead spin bowler of the team and quite frankly Ojha impressed more than him.
Rahul Dravid: (B)
Tried really hard, was awarded to some extent for his efforts in the first innings at Mohali and the last one at Bangalore. He seems to be putting himself under too much pressure. The technique and the style was still clearly evident though.
Virender Sehawg: (B-)
He was a huge disappointment of the tour, not for the lack of runs, but more for the way he repeatedly kept getting out. For someone with experience of over 80 tests, all over the world, and going to the series with batting average of 99 in this year, he should have negotiated the short ball much better than what he did. There were at least 3 occasions where he didn’t need to play a shot when he got out.
The boy gave it all in the only test he got to play. The effort was evident but the luck wouldn’t aid him. The wickets column don’t do a perfect justice to his hard-work, however he played a crucial role, alongside ZK, ensuring that Australian tail didn’t wag too long on the fifth morning at Bangalore.
Gautam Gambhir: (C)
Utter disappointment for the second series in a row. He better get his fitness worries sorted out quickly. Murali Vijay his breathing right down his neck.
Team India: (A+)
Overall, the team did wonders and retained their #1 rank. They showed a lot of character in the way they came back at the Australians even after conceding over 400 runs in the first innings. They showed a good temperament in the chase on both the occasions. They outplayed the Australians in almost every department of the game.
-Nikhil Sharad Jadhav