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INDvAUS : Pandya & Dhoni guide India to win in rain shortened first ODI against Australia

India started their limited overs home season by beating Australia in the first One-day international at M Chidambaram Stadium, Chennai just a few moments ago. The top order of India failed but Kedar Jadhav, Hardik Pandya, experienced MS Dhoni and Bhuvneshwar Kumar helped the hosts’ post 281 for 7 in 50 overs. Australia was given a revised target of 164 in 21 overs but none of their batsmen expect from Maxwell could contribute.

Indian captain Virat Kohli won the toss and elected to bat. It was a good bowling display by Australia’s new bowl pair of Cummins along with Nathan Coulter Nile. Rahane (5) , Virat Kohli (0) and Manish Pandey(0) were dismissed by Nathan Coulter Nile that left India in big trouble at 11 for 3. Kedar Jadhav and Rohit Sharma steadied the innings. At the end of 10 overs, India were 34 for 3.

After the powerplay overs, both batsmen continued to play with positive intent hitting the bad balls away for boundaries. Rohit Sharma was dismissed trying to hit a big shot ending a 53 runs stand for the 4th wicket. Mahendra Singh Dhoni was given a loud cheer by local fans. Kedar Jadhav was also dismissed playing a poor stroke for 40. Hardik Pandya and MS Dhoni steadied the innings with good batting from both batsmen. It was just amazing batting by Pandya who smashed Zampa for 3 successive sixes. The all-rounder completed his half-century off 48 balls.

After completing his half-century, Hardik Pandya continued to play with positive intent with MS Dhoni gave him support. The hard-hitting all-rounder was dismissed for 83 in 63 balls ending a 118 runs partnership for the sixth wicket. Bhuvneshwar Kumar came to the crease and played with positive intent. Mahendra Singh Dhoni completed another milestone of reaching 100th 50 in 75 balls. The former Indian captain played aggressively hitting sixes and fours with ease. He was dismissed for 79 in 88 balls. Bhuvneshwar Kumar remained not out on 32 off 30 balls. India posted 281 for 7 in 50 overs.

Chasing a revised target of 164 in 21 overs, Australia lost an early wicket of debutant Cartwright for 1. The first powerplay overs were reduced to 4 overs. Hardik Pandya then took two successive wickets of Steve Smith and Travis Head. Kuldeep dismissed dangerous David Warner. Glenn Maxwell played positively scoring 39 in 18 balls with 4 sixes and 3 fours. The rest of batting order failed. Australia lost wickets at regular intervals and was restricted to 137 for 9 in 21 overs. James Faulkner remained not out on 32.

India 281 for 7 in 50 overs ( Hardik Pandya 83, MS Dhoni 79, Bhuvneshwar Kumar 32*) beat Australia 137 for 9 in 21 overs ( Maxwell 39, Faulkner 32*, Chahal 3/30) by 26 runs via D/L method

Captain Virat Kohli said:  Kedar Jadhav and MS Dhoni played well after we lost early wickets. MS Dhoni was brilliant with his finishing abilities. Hardik’s knock was a special one which changed the course of the game. The bowling was also brilliant with Chahal, Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar. After the rain, our bowlers did a great job.

Man of the match Hardik Pandya said: Mahi bhai helped me when I came to bat. I also bowled well and took 2 important wickets. Today was a good day with both bat and ball.

India takes a 1-0 lead with the second match to be played at Eden Gardens, Kolkata on 21st September.