India vs Australia: Rohit Sharma’s ton goes in vain as hosts register historic win at SCG
This was Australia’s 1000th win in international cricket and they become the first country to do so.Updated: Jan 12, 2019, 16:11 IST
Vice-captain Rohit Sharma was at his majestic best but his 22nd ODI century went in vain as Australia registered an emphatic 34-run win in the first ODI of the three-match series at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG), on Saturday. This was Australia’s 1000th win in international cricket and they become the first country to do so.
Chasing a formidable target of 289, Aussie pacers got rid of three Indian batsmen early to put the pressure on the visitors. Jason Behrendorff got rid of Shikhar Dhawan (0) in the first over itself while Jhye Richardson removed India skipper Virat Kohli for just 3 as he was caught by Marcus Stoinis. Amabti Rayudu was the next to depart as he was trapped LBW by Richardson for a duck.
Rohit Sharma and MS Dhoni steadied the Indian ship by putting on a good partnership. The duo put on 137-run stand to give the visitors a fighting chance in the match. During the course of their partnership, both Rohit and Dhoni completed their respective half-centuries. While as for Dhoni, he also crossed the 10,000 run mark in ODIs for India.
Behrendorff finally got rid of Dhoni for 51 as he was trapped LBW. Dhoni became the pacer’s second scalp of the day.
But Rohit kept hold of one end and completed his well-deserved century off 110 deliveries. This was Rohit’s 22nd ton in the fifty-over match of the game and he also became the first Indian to score five ODI centuries in Australia.
Rohit tried to reignite India’s chase by putting on partnerships with Dinesh Karthik (12) first and then Ravindra Jadeja (8) but neither of them could last long at the crease. As for Rohit, he too succumbed to increasing run-rate pressure and was finally dismissed by Stoinis for 133.
The lower-order showed some resistance but in the end India fell well short of the target to lose the match and go 1-0 down in the series. Jhye Richardson was the pick of the Aussie bowlers as he ended with outstanding figures of 4/26.
Earlier, Test discard Peter Handscomb top-scored with 73 off 61 balls as India restricted Australia to 288 for five. The visitors looked well placed to chase down the total, with the two highest run chases at the SCG -- 334 by Australia against England in 2011 and 331 by India against the home side in 2016 -- well above their target.
Three batsmen reached half-centuries but Handscomb, passed over this week by selectors for this month’s two Tests against Sri Lanka, led the board with six fours and two sixes.
Fellow Test discard Shaun Marsh knocked up 54 off 70 balls while Usman Khawaja made 59 from 81. All-rounder Marcus Stoinis contributed an unbeaten 47 off 43 balls with two fours and two sixes, while limited-over specialist Glenn Maxwell finished 11 off just five balls.
India’s Bhuvneshwar Kumar finished with two for 59 and wrist-spinner Kuldeep Yadav claimed two for 54. Skipper Aaron Finch fell for six in the third over when he was bowled by Kumar for the paceman’s 100th ODI wicket.
Alex Carey fell in Kuldeep’s first over when he attempted to cut the leg-spinner, only to get an outside edge to Rohit Sharma at slip for 24 off 31 balls. Khawaja and Marsh put on 92 runs for the third wicket before Khawaja was out leg before wicket to spinner Ravindra Jadeja for 59 in the 29th over.
Khawaja was struck on the front pad while attempting to sweep and sought a review but there was no ‘hot spot’ detected off the bat. Marsh look well set before he holed out to Mohammed Shami off Kuldeep at long on, ending a 53-run stand with Handscomb, who later found Shikhar Dhawan at extra cover off Kumar.
((With Agency Inputs))