Australia produced another complete effort to seal the three-match ODI series against India at the Sydney Cricket Ground with one match to go. Virat Kohli & Co managed only 338 runs in pursuit of 390 set by the hosts batting first.
Chasing a mammoth total of 390 runs, India produced a better performance with the bat but it was not enough to secure a win. Shikhar Dhawan and Mayank Agarwal got off to a flying start before Australia pegged back. Skipper Virat Kohli played another gem of a knock along with KL Rahul and Shreyas Iyer but they couldn’t bat till the end and take their side home.
The Men in Blues managed only 338 runs; thus, finishing 51 runs to lose five ODI matches in a row. Pat Cummins picked three wickets while Adam Zamp and Josh Hazlewood picked two each to complement the batters and seal the series against India.
Batting first, Aaron Finch and David Warner got to their respective fifties and added a 142-run partnership as Indian bowlers continue to search for wickets with the new ball. Though they went in succession Steve Smith ensured that Australia didn’t let the advantage slip and scored at a brisk rate.
Our bowlers were not effective – Virat Kohli
Marnus Labuschange played the ideal foil and there was another 100+ association with Smith. Glenn Maxwell applied the finishing touches to the innings with his whirlwind knock of 63 off 29 balls as Australia posted a monumental target of 390 runs.
Speaking at the end of the game, skipper Virat Kohli admitted that they were not effective with the ball. Admitting that they were completely outplayed by the Aussies, Kohli said the bowlers didn’t hit the right areas. The talismanic run-scorer also praised their bowlers for hitting the right areas and making the run chase difficult.
“Completely outplayed. I think with the ball we were not that effective. Didn’t hit the areas we wanted to consistently. They’ve got a strong batting lineup and know the angles. Their total was a bit too steep, if you see we got 340 and still lost by 51 runs. With the areas they bowled, they were in a position to create chances and with those chances taken, they were on top,” Virat Kohli said.
Adding more, Virat Kohli admitted that if he and KL Rahul, who played an outstanding 60-run knock, batted till the 40th over, the result could have been different. Hardik Pandya, who smacked the bowlers all round the park in the last match failed to get his timing right eventually getting out for 28 runs.
“KL and I thought even 100 in the last ten overs with Hardik to come was achievable. If KL and me had stuck around till the 40th over, we could have put them under pressure. The wicket was beautiful to bat on,” Virat Kohli added.