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SOK it to me! Australia stun India to win in Pune

Steve O'Keefe is Australia's premier spinner at the moment. (AP Photo/Rajanish Kakade)
25th February, 2017
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It has taken less than three days of play for Australia to record a Test win that, before the first ball, the world at large agreed was bordering on the impossible.

A second collapse from India in as many innings saw the Australians take a remarkable 333-run victory that will live on in the memory of Baggy Green fans for decades to come.

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» Australia embarrass India technically and mentally
» Australia must not repeat 2001 nightmare
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The man of the hour? The oft-maligned Steve O’Keefe, who took a total of twelve wickets for the match, six in each innings.

Nathan Lyon also deserves a hand for taking four in the second innings, and Steve Smith’s knock of 109 completed on Day 3 – his first century in India – was pivotal for giving the Australian side confidence.

However there’s no doubt that this was a match which belonged to O’Keefe, a newfound Australian hero after playing just a handful of Tests before now.

The match started on Thursday with Australia putting up a total of 260 in their first innings, Matt Renshaw the top-scorer with 68 despite feeling more than a little queasy at times.

There were significant doubts to be had over whether or not that would be enough, but a collapse of the Indian order in their first innings, sparked by Mitchell Starc and driven home by O’Keefe, left Australia in a surprisingly comfortable position at stumps on Day 2.

David Warner and Shaun Marsh couldn’t deliver much as the openers in Australia’s second innings, but a masterful century by Smith was enough to put the visitors in a commanding position.

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At the end of Australia’s second innings, they had a lead of 440 runs, and no shortage of time in which to bowl India out.

As it was, not much of that time was needed – Cheteshwar Pujara’s total of 31 was the best any Indian batsmen could muster, and only four reached double figures as O’Keefe and Lyon laid waste to all before them and led Australia to victory.

All things considered, it seems a very real possibility that we’ve all somehow died and gone to Australian cricket fan heaven.

Final score
Australia 260, 285
India 105, 107

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