The Men in Blue scripted a fairy tale ending to the Commonwealth Bank tri-series tournament in Australia, by notching a historic win in the second final, Tuesday, in Brisbane - beating the world champion host team by 9 runs.
India won the first final in Sydney by 6 wickets.
The win, India's first tri-series tournament triumph on Australian soil, was made possible thanks to a sublime innings of 91 runs being scored by 'Master Blaster' Sachin Tendulkar, followed by a useful 4-wicket haul by the Man of the Match bowler Praveen Kumar.
In the first game of the best-of-three finals series Tendulkar orchestrated India's victory with a marvellous unbeaten 117.
After winning the toss and choosing to bat, Tendulkar helped make a useful 94 runs first-wicket partnership, besides himself essaying a blistering 91 runs (off 121 balls) and built a platform for India to set an imposing total of 258 runs.
Facing a challenging target of 259 runs to win, the Aussies, who were in form during the initial stage of the series, looked off-color on Tuesday as India's surprise pick, Praveen Kumar scalped top-order batsmen Adam Gilchrist, Ricky Ponting and Michael Clarke.
James Hopes (63 runs), Michael Hayden (55 runs), Michael Hussey (44 runs) and Andrew Symonds (42 runs) briefly kept alive the hope of the Australians before Sreesanth, Irfan Pathan and Harbhajan Singh bowled superb spells to restrict the world champions to 249 (all out) with 2 balls to spare.
Praveen Kumar, who ended with superb bowling figures of 4/46, was adjudged the Man of the Match.
Australian pacer Nathan Bracken, with a total wicket haul of 21 wickets in 10 games, was adjudged the Man of the Series.
The game in Brisbane was significant as it was the last ever international cricket match that Adam Gilchrist, the finest wicket-keeper batsman the world has ever known, would play.
The CB tri-series tournament was an acid test for India as it fielded a team comprising of youngsters, preferring to keep out the senior players, except for Sachin Tendulkar. As a result, the Indian team came under a lot of criticism back home.
In Australia, things were no better, as the team found itself in the middle of several controversies, including racism charges that were levelled by the Australian players.
However, Tuesday's win has helped the Indian team put everything behind them. This is the best tour I have been on. It cannot get better than this as we played the world's top two teams - Sri Lanka and Australia - and then beating them to win convincingly in two successive finals, said Indian team captain M.S. Dhoni, following the chest-thumping victory.
The one-day captain, who had also led India to Twenty20 World Cup glory last year, said the win was especially significant for his young team.
It was the building stage of my team. There were a few doubts if this team can do well in Australia. The bowlers did well but the way we improved our batting was great. The way Sachin gave us a start was great. It can't get better than this, beating them (Australia) in two finals. With their (Australian) batting line there were a few concerns with all of them not scoring, Dhoni said.
Right now we're playing really good cricket, he said. This series win will give us confidence, give the young guys security and confidence to know they're part of the team.
All credit to the Indians. The way they played over the last week, they deserve the trophy. Our level of cricket over the last week has dropped off. That's disappointing. We've stumbled at the last turn again, can't take anything from India again. We've probably played our worst cricket over the last week. There are no excuses for that, said losing side's captain Ricky Ponting.
Ponting, who was in the thick of controversies earlier this summer, said, I'm not a big thinker about a lot of these issues. I try and deal with things when they are there and do what has to be done and deal with issues as quickly as I can.
But I guess with this summer, it's been a pretty constant stream of things that you're hearing or reading about or seeing that I've had to answer. It's been more constant this year than it probably has in the past. But I'm not making any excuses for me or the team why we haven't played well, Ponting said.
As a captain and a leader you have lots of things you have to deal with. No doubt this summer has been a tough one, but I felt I've dealt with the issues as well as I possibly could and tried my best to put them behind me and prepare myself and the team. You can't blame any of the issues for our performances in the last two games because there really hasn't been anything that happened, he said.
It is the second successive year Australia has lost the tri-series finals, its defeat replicating its loss to England last summer.
Following the win, Sachin Tendulkar has jumped to No.1 spot in ICC's ODI (One Day International) Batsman ranking, overtaking Ricky Ponting. Dhoni is at No.10.
India's President Pratibha Patil has hailed the tri-series win as a fabulous victory.
This is a victory based on teamwork and strong determination, the President said in a message.
The Prime Minister Manmohan Singh also praised the Indian team for their victory.
Congratulating the Indian cricket players who have done our country immensely proud, Singh said the victory was an indication of our great potential in the world of sports.
Given good leadership and management, we can excel in our sports, the prime minister said.
The apex governing body for cricket in India, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), has announced a cash reward of Rs.10 crore ($2.5 million) for the winning team.
Last week, the India won the under-19 World Cup tournament, defeating South Africa in the final by 12 runs.