Australia stroll to World Test title

Australia won the World Test Championship by ruthlessly dismantling India on the fifth day of the cricket final at The Oval.

India’s slim hopes of reaching a world-record target of 444 rested on Virat Kohli, 44 not out as they began on 164-3, but the fans’ hero was out for 49 in the seventh over of the day.

Kohli aimed a loose drive at Scott Boland, with Steve Smith taking a stunning catch at second slip. In the same over, Ravindra Jadeja edged Boland behind.

The game in their grasp, Australia efficiently worked through the lower order before lunch to dismiss India for 234 and take victory by 209 runs. Boland ended with 3-46, off-spinner Nathan Lyon 4-41.

They become the second winners of the World Test Championship, following New Zealand’s success two years ago.

It means Australia carry the crown of being the best Test team in the world into the most eagerly-anticipated Ashes series in a generation.

The first match in the five-Test contest against England begins at Edgbaston on Friday.

Summarised scores: Australia 469 (Travis Head 163, Steve Smith 121; Mohammed Siraj 4-108) and 270-8 dec (Alex Carey 66*; Ravindra Jadeja 3-58). India 296 (Ajinkya Rahane 89, Shardul Thakur 51;Pat Cummins 3-83) & 234 (Nathan Lyon 4-41, Scott Boland 3-46). Australia won by 209 runs