Why India May Not Win But Will Still Retain Border-Gavaskar Trophy

Australia could win the final Test and level the series, but India will still retain the trophy. Here’s why.

2 min read
India will retain the Border-Gavaskar Trophy, irrespective of the result of the fourth and final Test. 

Were you confused when you heard that India have retained the Border-Gavaskar Trophy after their 137-run over Australia in third Test? Did you wonder why it was so, with the possibility that the hosts could win the final Test and level the four-match series?

Well, if the answer is yes, we got you.

The Border-Gavaskar Trophy, the name given to the Test series between India and Australia, has one underlying rule – if the series ends in a draw, the team that had previously won the Trophy, gets to retain it.

And so, having won the previous edition 2-1 when Australia came visiting in 2017 (that ‘brainfade’ series, remember?), India hold first claim to the prize in case of a level scoreline.

Having won the series opener in Adelaide by 31 runs, lost the second match at Perth, and then again won the third Test at Melbourne by 137 runs, India have taken a 2-1 lead in the ongoing four-match rubber. Hence, the best Australia can now do is win the final match and draw the series 2-2.

If that happens, India still retain the trophy.

Or the other case scenario is that if India win the final match, or if it finishes without a result, India will be the clear winners of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy while also registering their first-ever Test series win in Australia.

A Little Background

The Border-Gavaskar Trophy has been named after two legends of the sport – Australia’s Allan Border and India’s Sunil Gavaskar – who were the first-ever cricketers to cross the 10,000-run mark in Tests, and also the only ones to do it in the 20th century.

The first edition of the Trophy was played in 1996-97, when Sachin Tendulkar-led India won the one-off Test by 7 wickets in Delhi. Before that, the two countries had played a total of 50 Tests between 1947 and 1996, of which Australia had won 24, India had won 8, one was tied and 17 ended in a draw.

Since its inception, a total of 13 editions of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy have been played – India have won seven and Australia have won five. Only once has the series ended in a draw – in 2003-04, India and Australia had won a Test each in the four-match series Down Under, while the other two Tests ended in draw.

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