India break Pakistan’s long-standing record after 30 years with series win over England

The anticipation was high as England set foot on Indian soil, expected as worthy contenders to challenge India’s formidable home record in Test cricket. Any doubts about their competitive spirit were promptly dispelled as England clinched an impressive victory in the opening Test at Hyderabad. The tourists maintained their resilience throughout the subsequent matches, but India’s tenacity in crucial moments led to a succession of three hard-fought victories, cementing their dominance on home turf.

The significance of the triumph in the fourth Test at Ranchi cannot be overstated. In a game where they were forced to bat last after losing the toss, India accomplished a feat that had eluded them since 2013—a successful chase of a 150-plus score on their home ground. The five-wicket victory not only sealed the series but also extended India’s unbeaten series streak at home to an unprecedented 17. This remarkable series of wins began in February 2013 and shows no signs of abating.

With their 17th consecutive home series win, India eclipsed Pakistan’s record of being unbeaten in 16 Test series on their soil—a record that stood from March 1982 until November 1994. Nevertheless, the record for the most consecutive Test series wins at home is held firmly by Australia, who dominated an impressive 28 series from November 1993 to November 2008, until they faced defeat by South Africa. This milestone remains a distant horizon for many cricketing nations, and India will have to sustain its momentum to approach it. Notably, India’s history is punctuated with similar achievements, having enjoyed 14 uninterrupted home series victories between 1987 and 1999, and another stretch from 2004 to 2012.

The euphoria that follows such victories must not overshadow the critical junctures that decide the fate of a series. This series could have had a different narrative if not for the steely partnership between Dhruv Jurel and Shubman Gill in the second innings of the pivotal Ranchi Test. Before their collaboration, India, after a solid start, had lost five wickets for a mere 36 runs, leaving them vulnerable and the tail-enders dangerously close to the firing line. However, it was Jurel’s composure under fire coupled with Gill’s finesse that anchored the treacherous chase to a triumphant close. Their unbroken 72-run partnership dignified the series and strengthened India’s position while simultaneously dealing a blow to Ben Stokes and Brendon McCullum’s acclaimed captain-coach partnership, which has been otherwise impressive in the Test arena.

India’s series win not only contributes to the statistics and records but also cements their place as a formidable force in the World Test Championship rankings, as they solidify their second position.

Crucially, while India celebrates this accomplishment, they are aware that the journey to emulate or surpass Australia’s colossal record is a marathon, not a sprint. These victories are but milestones along a path strewn with formidable opponents and unpredictable pitches. Each series is a new chapter, each game a fresh battle. The drive for excellence is unyielding, and the passion for the game is relentless.

As fans celebrate this historic milestone, the Indian cricket team is already eyeing the next challenge on the horizon. Cricket, after all, is not just about the records set but also about the relentless pursuit of greatness, one game at a time.

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