Australia registered a second successive win over India in the ODI series at the Sydney Cricket Ground today. The match followed the same pattern as the first ODI did as Australia amassed a huge total before restricting India by chipping away with regular wickets. Earlier, Australia won the toss and chose to bat first.
David Warner and Aaron Finch provided yet another brisk start for Australia as their partnership exceeded 100 again. Following their dismissals, Steve Smith continued from where he left off in the previous match to score another century. Half-centuries from Marnus Labuschagne and Glenn Maxwell ensured the Aussie reached a mammoth 389.
India were left with a mountain to climb and it proved to be too stiff in the end. India begun briskly but kept losing wickets at regular intervals. With the exception of Virat Kohli and KL Rahul, none of the batters could get going. In the end, India fell short by 51 runs to hand Australia a 2-0 lead in the 3 match series.
Kohli admits Pandya gave away the bowling plan; Finch concurs
Following the first ODI when the Indian bowlers were taken for plenty of runs, there were calls for Hardik Pandya to bowl as the 6th bowler despite his back problems. Pandya had stated that he was preserving himself for the ‘important matches’. However, as the Australian batters were making merry, Pandya came in to bowl 4 overs today and proved to be successful as the Aussies struggled against his change of pace and cutters. Steve Smith’s wicket came off his bowling as well.
Speaking after the match, Indian skipper Virat Kohli admitted that Pandya might have given away a trick to Australia by showing them the effectiveness of cutters. “Hardik felt okay to bowl. Initially just thought of trying for a couple of overs but he felt good and bowled a couple more. And he gave away a bit of a bowling plan with his off-cutters,” he said.
Speaking after Virat Kohli, Australian skipper Aaron Finch agreed that the Aussies had learnt from Pandya on how to bowl on the pitch. He said, “Moises bowled really well defensively including his cutters, and as Virat said, we got a bit of a blueprint from Hardik, by taking the pace off the ball.”