So on a day when Indian cricket hit another all-time low, we end our coverage of this test series. If you predicted that India would lose their last 8 overseas tests before the England tour started, you'd have become a millionaire by now. Quite unbelievable that it has really happened. Anyway, that's it from us. Over at Napier, Zimbabwe are sinking very quickly, do hop over to the other tab to follow that. There is a Big Bash final later in the day as well. And don't forget that this tour still has the T20s and the ODI tri-series coming up. So a lot of cricket to look forward to. Do join us then. Until next time, this is Srivathsa signing off on behalf of Karthik, Ganesh and Sathyavelu. Be well and take care. Amen!
If one thing the Indian side could learn from this Aussie side, is that you can come back from humiliating losses, if you are prepared to take hard decisions. Will the BCCI do so? That is the million dollar question. Hopefully there will be an honest and frank assessment of what needs to be done in the future and not issues being swept under the carpet as has been the case on numerous occasions. That's the minimum one can do and the minimum the die-hard Indian fan expects.
# Hilfenhaus' 27 wickets in the series is the highest in a series, since the 40 wickets taken by Shane Warne against England in the 2005 Ashes. What a change a year has made for the former bricklayer from Tasmania.
A couple of stats that put things in perspective: # Michael Clarke alone made 626 runs in the series in 6 innings, while the famed trio - Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid and VVS made 636 runs in 24 innings combined.
Arthur: Very happy with 4-0. We were under trouble at Melbourne, but came through the pressure situation well. Pressure is a telling issue, especially in Tests and very happy with our effort. One thing I'd take out from the series is that the guys executed the way we planned. Everybody standing up when the pressure was on, Michael Clarke making a triple ton when we were three down at Sydney. We've got to be realistic, India are a fantastic side. It is one little war we have won, still a long way to go.
Never has an Aussie bowling line-up hunt in pairs like this one has done. Hilfenhaus and Siddle struggled to take a wicket during last year's Ashes and now they have 50 wickets combined (Hif - 27, Siddle - 23) after this series. Pattinson played only two tests and took 11 wickets. Lyon seems to be the sort of spinner that Clarke likes and he played his part too. The batting was always going to be an irksome issue for Australia, but Clarke and Ponting rose to the occasion like never before. Clarke as captain was special as well, always aggressive and willing to push the game forward. His angry reaction before declaring yesterday showed how badly he wanted to make it 4-0. He looks destined to become one of Australia's greatest ever captains.
The Aussies have shown to the world how to rebuild a side - their Argus review focussed on the shortcomings and they have taken steps to rectify their weaknesses. One shouldn't forget the contributions of two silent men - Mickey Arthur and Craig McDermott, the coach and the bowling coach respectively. The latter was particularly instrumental in the resurrection of the good old virtues of pitching the ball up and allowing it to swing - the results are there for all to see.
Ponting: There was a fair bit of pressure on me coming into the series and for fair reasons. I was putting a lot of pressure on myself also as I am a very proud man and I want to win Tests for Australia. It was a long time since I had a big series and I thank the coach and selectors for sticking with me. Justin Langer and I understand each other and know our games so well. It was getting harder for me being the captain and number 3 and there was no break at all, and the fact that I wasn't making much runs made it difficult. I felt it was the right time to quit captaincy and hand over to Clarke, and he has done well. Sachin was going through that phase and Rahul was as well, in the last year. The Ashes isn't too far away and I would love to make it there if I am good enough.
Do India take home any positives from this series? Yes. A couple. Virat Kohli and Umesh Yadav. One of the team management's only good decision on this tour was persisting with Kohli, especially after all the pressure on him after the Sydney Test. He has justified the decision and has given India's future a bit of a hope. Umesh Yadav was a good find too. He was a bit inconsistent but there is enough in him to persist with, especially considering his young age.
But let's not disrespect the trio of Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid and VVS Laxman. They have been, and will always remain India's heroes, not only for their on-field achievements, but also for the way they carry themselves off the field as well. If and when they go, they should be remembered for all their achievements over the last couple of decades, and NOT for the last 8 overseas Tests.
India find themselves in a very similar position to what Australia did last year, when they lost the Ashes at home. Fortunately for India, they too have a huge break before their next Test series, which gives them enough time to ponder over what went wrong. Australia had an independent review in that period, and came out with some tough decisions, results of which are showing on the field now. Will India do something similar? They should. Even if not by an independent agency, there should be a review. It is high time the transition period started, and we could be in for an exciting phase in Indian cricket.
Clarke: It's a pretty good start for me. A lot of credit has to go the boys and the support staff. It hasn't come easy. The scoreboard says 4-0 but it hasn't been too easy, we had to work very hard for it. Discipline and hard work has changed our fortunes. There is a fire in our belly so you're seeing the results on the field. I've been very happy the whole summer so I can't thank the boys enough. I also want to thank India, they have some wonderful legends who are obviously under a lot of pressure now. But the Australian public loves to see them come here and play, and it's a great honour to play against you. I hope my performances get better. To perform so well against such a good bowling line up is satisfying.
Clarke is the Man of the Series for his 626 runs (and brilliant leadership!)
Dhoni: They played consistent cricket which was very important. Their batsmen gave big partnerships when they needed. Their bowlers were consistent in length and did well when it was needed. There comes a phase in Australia when it will be difficult for the bowlers but that's when you have to be consistent. That is exactly what they did throughout the series. We'll have to wait and watch (regarding changes) as our next Test is in September. There is plenty of time so we will not rush in the decisions now. Right now we have to concentrate on the ODI series. There will be a lot of youngsters in the team there and hopefully we will do well.
Siddle: I think I was unlucky in the other grounds to not get too many wickets. The bowling unit did the job together and I was lucky enough to get the wickets today. We emphasise on bowling partnerships so we just stuck at it. My bowling length has been the biggest improvement and I am just sticking to the plan, which is showing in the results.
Peter Siddle is the Man of the Match for his match tally of 6 wickets.
The series started with doubts over the fate of Australian seniors like Ponting and Hussey, but has ended with murmurs about the retirements of Indian seniors - Dravid and Laxman. So much has changed in just one month of Test cricket! India have given the Australian seniors a new lease of life while the Australian bowlers have practically ended the careers of India's veterans. But let's not forget that it was not just the fantastic 3 who failed. The likes of Gambhir, Sehwag, Dhoni and Ishant have been ineffective as well.
It was going to be a formality today and it was exactly that. Another whitewash for India overseas. It has got to hurt the pride of the seniors. They troop out to shake hands with disappointment writ large on their faces. The Australians, on the other hand, have had everything going their way. Their seniors who were under pressure came good and Michael Clarke has enhanced his reputation greatly as captain. The bowling unit too deserves special mention for their disciplined effort throughout the series.
Lyon to Umesh Yadav, out Caught by Haddin!! Lyon gets his fourth and Australia win the series 4-0, this one was just outside off and Umesh Yadav gets a thick edge as he pushes out, good take by Haddin to complete things and the Australians are in a huddle to celebrate. Umesh Yadav c Haddin b Lyon 1(11)
Lyon to Umesh Yadav, THATS OUT!! Caught!!
Lyon to Umesh Yadav, no run, straighter in line, Umesh Yadav pushes it down the track
Lyon to Umesh Yadav, no run, floated up, Umesh Yadav tries to whip it on the onside but gets a leading edge to cover
Lyon to Umesh Yadav, no run, tossed up and outside off, Umesh Yadav comes on the frontfoot and defends it
Hilfenhaus to Ashwin, no run, full and straight, Ashwin opens the face to push it to gully
Hilfenhaus to Ashwin, no run, outside off again, Ashwin reaches out and guides it to gully