Sydney, January 12
Rohit Sharma’s individual brilliance failed to make up for a floundering top and middle-order as India suffered a 34-run defeat at the hands of a resilient Australia in the first ODI here today. Sharma conjured up a magnificent 133 of 129 balls for his 22nd ODI hundred but eventually it only helped in reducing the margin of defeat as India ended up at 254/9 chasing a 289-run target.
Smashing 10 fours and six sixes, Sharma reached his hundred off 110 balls, equalling Sourav Ganguly’s record of 22 ODI centuries; he’s now behind only Sachin Tendulkar (49) and Virat Kohli (38) on the list of India’s top century makers.
India were gasping for breath after losing three batsmen in the first 11 deliveries, with just 4 runs on the scoreboard. Sharma combined with MS Dhoni (51) to stitch together a 137-run stand for the fourth wicket and get the chase back on track. Debutant Jason Behrendorff broke the partnership by trapping Dhoni LBW, who became only the fifth batsman to complete 10,000 runs for India in ODI cricket during the course of his knock that came off 96 balls.
Oz batting comes good
The hosts owe their 1-0 lead in the three-match series to a collective batting effort by their middle-order batsmen, specially Peter Handscomb who switched gears in time to steer his side to 288/5 with his 73-run knock. Handscomb and Marcus Stoinis (47 not out) grabbed the momentum with their 68-run stand for the fifth wicket as Australia scored 93 runs in the last 10 overs. Usman Khawaja (59) and Shaun Marsh (54) also scored half-centuries for the hosts.
Young paceman Jhye Richardson (4/26) rocked the Indian middle-order by dismissing India skipper Virat Kohli (3) and Ambati Rayudu (0) in space of three balls and later added wickets of Dinesh Karthik and Ravindra Jadeja in a career-best performance. Behrendorff (2/39) trapped Shikhar Dhawan lbw for a first-ball duck before Richardson swung into action. Kohli was caught at short square leg, and then two balls later Rayudu (0) was trapped plumb LBW.
It put huge brakes on the scoring even as Sharma and Dhoni struggled to get going. So much so, India managed only a paltry 21/3 in the first ten overs. Their 50-run stand came off 82 balls, while they took India past 100 in the 26th over. Sharma reached his half-century off 62 balls, while Dhoni reached his 68th ODI half-century off 93 balls. Thanks to the initial caution, India were at 141/4 in the 32nd over, when Dhoni was trapped lbw by Behrendorff.
The chase came to an informal end in the 46th over as Ravindra Jadeja (8) and Sharma holed out in the space of ten balls. Marcus Stoinis (2/66) dismissed Sharma, and India’s hopes perished with him for there was too much for the remaining tail-enders to do.
Earlier, India spinners Kuldeep Yadav (2/54) and Jadeja (1/48) shared three wickets between them while pacer Bhuvneshwar Kumar (2/66) accounted for two batsmen. — PTI
Dhoni enters 10k club
MS Dhoni became the fifth Indian batsman after Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly, Rahul Dravid and Virat Kohli to score 10,000 ODI runs for India. He joined the 10K club en route his 51 off 96 balls. The sluggish innings has again sparked a massive debate on social media over his place in the side. The knock, of course, came in difficult circumstances —India were 3 down for four runs when he came in to bat. At that stage, India needed a big partnership, which he delivered with Rohit Sharma, but the pace at which he got his runs is bound to raise a few questions.
Dhoni’s knock because of situation
If you look at Dhoni’s overall batting, his strike rate is around 90. Today was a different scenario; when he came out to bat we had already lost three wickets and Australia were bowling pretty well. You just cannot go out and get a 100-run partnership easily. So we took a little bit of time and even I did not score as quickly as I normally do. I took my time, too, because we wanted to get that partnership; had we lost another wicket at that point, the game would have been dead there and then. So, we had to play dot balls and build a partnership
Dhoni at No. 4 will be ideal
Personally, I feel Dhoni batting at No. 4 will be ideal for the team but we have got Ambati Rayudu who has done really well at that spot. It totally depends on what the captain and the coach think about it. Personally, I would be happy if Dhoni bats at 4
DRS calls tricky
Taking DRS can be tricky. We don’t even have 15 seconds to talk to the batter, only 5-7 seconds by the time they walk over. Rayudu said he thought the ball was drifting down leg side and I thought the same. We don’t think about these decisions once they have happened, and you cannot always be right
Jadeja can play cameo
We believe in Jadeja to play those cameo innings when required but the asking rate was way too much when he came in to bat and for any batsman to start playing shots is not that easy. Surprisingly, the ball was reversing quite a bit, so to adjust to that is not really easy for the new batter
Lucky to get Dhoni out lbw: Richardson
Man of the Match Jhye Richardson said Australia were lucky to get MS Dhoni out with a dubious LBW call in the first ODI here today. Dhoni was given out when the Australian team appealed after the second ball of the 33rd over, bowled by debutant Jason Behrendorff, but TV replays showed the ball had pitched outside the leg-stump. “There was a period there when they had a partnership through the middle and it almost could have taken the game away from us. But we were lucky to get Dhoni out lbw and we kept getting wickets from there on,” Richardson said. — PTI
A Carey c Rohit b Yadav 24
A Finch b Kumar 6
U Khawaja lbw Jadeja 59
S Marsh c Shami b Yadav 54
P Handscomb c Dhawan b Kumar 73
M Stoinis not out 47
G Maxwell not out 11
Extras: (B4 LB2 NB 2 W6) 14
Total: (5 wickets; 50 overs) 288
FOW: 1-8, 2-41, 3-133, 4-186, 5-254
Bhuvneshwar Kumar 10-0-66-2
Khaleel Ahmed 8-0-55-0
Mohammed Shami 10-0-46-0
Kuldeep Yadav 10-0-54-2
Ravindra Jadeja 10-0-48-1
Ambati Rayudu 2-0-13-0
R Sharma c Maxwell b Stoinis 133
S Dhawan lbw Behrendorff 0
V Kohli c Stoinis b Richardson 3
A Rayudu lbw Richardson 0
MS Dhoni lbw Behrendorff 51
D Karthik b Richardson 12
R Jadeja c Marsh b Richardson 8
B Kumar not out 29
K Yadav c Khawaja b Siddle 3
M Shami c Maxwell b Stoinis 1
Extras: (LB 7 NB 1 W 6) 14
Total: (9 wickets; 50 overs) 254
FOW: 1-1, 2-4, 3-4, 4-141, 5-176, 6-213, 7-221, 8-247, 9-254
Jason Behrendorff 10-2-39-2
Jhye Richardson 10-2-26-4
Peter Siddle 8-0-48-1
Nathan Lyon 10-1-50-0
Marcus Stoinis 10-0-66-2
Glenn Maxwell 2-0-18-0