India smashed the winning streak of Australia and averted the white wash of 5-0 at SCG. Pandey helped India win with two balls remaining and it was a nail-biting finish. The win was achieved with a bit of luck, misfielding and dropped catches which helped India landing the victory. The match reminded me of India’s chase against Australia in Canberra.
Dhawan and Rohit Sharma gave a tremendous start off to India with the difference that Dhawan being aggressive on the field than Rohit Sharma this time. With a debut in test with a smashing innings of 187. Dhawan smashed the Australian bowling at SCG with a massive 78 of 56balls. He hit seven fours and three sixes along the way and added 123 for the opening wicket. Dhawan was dismissed by Hastings and Kohli was dismissed by Hastings for 8 off 11.
After the dismissal of Kohli and Dhawan it brought in Pandey where he was playing his fourth ODI and looking at his batting structure it seemed like he was a veteran of 50. Pandey looked completely organized. He kept scoring runs at regular intervals and ran brilliantly between the wickets. He and Rohit Sharma put an excellent 97 for third wicket, helping India get to win 100 runs exactly. Rohit missed out his century edging to the keeper at 99. Rohit would have been the first Indian batsman to score three centuries in an away series
Rohit dismissal made things complicated for India. Dhoni could not even bat properly in the match and he ended putting immense pressure on Pandey. India needed 100 to win from 91 balls when Dhoni came in. That became 40 runs needed off the last four over’s. Pandey was batting at a strike rate of well over 100 but Dhoni took long time to get the balls get going. Faulkner and Marsh were entrusted with the bowling job and both men did a commendable job to keep the runs down initially. However the 47th over which was bowled by Marsh costed Australia 13runs. This brought the required runs down to 22 needed off the last two overs. Faulkner bowled a 9-run over, which made it 13 runs needed off the final over — the exact number of runs Marsh had done in the previous over.
The final over was a do or die match finish. Dhoni, batting on 28 off 40 balls, was on strike to begin the over. Marsh was feeling the pressure and started off with a wide ball which was a plus point for India. Now 12 runs were needed off 6 balls. Marsh bowled a full toss off and it was a six. Now six were needed off five. Dhoni tried for a six this time and tried finishing off the match but unfortunately was caught by Warner. Six were needed off four with Pandey batting at 98.Gurkeerat Singh was the new man but he was at the non strikers end. Marsh bowled one on off stump, and Pandey got it down to the third man boundary to get to his maiden ODI century. India now needed two to win off three balls. Pandey finished it off with a brace as India finally beat Australia in Australia after four years. India is the first team anyone who had chased over 300 to beat Australia in Australia.
David Warner’s fifth century and a maiden ton from Mitchell Marsh helped Australia pile a huge score of 330 for 7. India put on their best bowling in this match but couldn’t stop Warner and Marsh.
Debutant Jaspreet Bumrah bowled well and so as Ishant Sharma and Ravindra Jadeja bowled well. But the bowling done by Umesh Yadav, Rishi Dhawan and Gurkeerat Singh were expensive. As a result for every good bowler on display for India there was a corresponding poor one, which was fully evidenced by the scorecard.
With David Warners century and Marsh’s ton where he scored 100 just off 81 balls in the final over of the innings. His knock included nine fours and 2 sixes and guided Australia to huge total.
The best part in the match is Dhawan’s and Rohit’s partnership and Pandey’s ton saved India from a white-wash in the series and trashed Australia’s win.