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Ajinkya Rahane ends lean patch with timely half-century for India vs Australia in 2nd ODI

Ajinkya Rahane scored 55 in the India vs Australia second ODI, thus, ending a run of poor scores in One-Day Internationals (ODIs)

india vs australia 2017 Updated: Sep 21, 2017 22:21 IST
Dhiman Sarkar
Dhiman Sarkar
Hindustan Times, Kolkata
India vs Australia,Ajinkya Rahane,Indian cricket team
Ajinkya Rahane plays a shot during the second India vs Australia ODI in Kolkata. (REUTERS)

Ajinkya Rahane ended a prolonged lean patch in ODIs with a well compiled half-century and looked good for more before being run out on 55 when he hesitated for a split-second while going for his second run. This was his fourth highest score following scores of 103, 72 and 60 in three ODIs in the West Indies. (India vs Australia - 2nd ODI: highlights)

Rahane couldn’t beat Travis Head’s thrown but till then was instrumental in providing India a platform for possible pyrotechnics at the back end. He and Virat Kohli added 102 runs for the second wicket to ensure the top-order collapse in Chennai wasn’t replicated. (India vs Australia - 2nd ODI: scorecard)

It took India 15 balls for the first four in this second ODI against Australia and it was Rahane who hit it. But on this afternoon, Rahane was intent on showing that what Rohit Sharma could do, he could as well. What followed was an exhibition of strokes on the off-side. Rahane hit his first boundary in the fourth over, making the most of Nathan Coulter-Nile missing his length. It was a superb cover-drive and he followed that up with a delectable piece of timing in the same over, this time to the left of the fielder at cover.

READ | Virat Kohli slams 45th fifty, puts India in great position vs Australia in Kolkata ODI

In the innings’ seventh over by Coulter-Nile, Rahane made the most of the gap between cover and mid-off. Australia had three slips, backward pint and cover when Kohli was batting initially but for Rahane the field was a lot more defensive. When Richardson gave him slight width, Rahane cut wiuth aplomb. Pat Cummins bowled a maiden but in the next over, the innings’ eighth, Rahane made amends with two fours, the second a cover-drive out of the coaching manual.

The boundaries dried up between the 14th and the 19th overs, in fact there were none for 33 deliveries, but Rahane and Kohli ran hard to keep the scoreboard moving. Till he paused for the briefest of time and was run out.

India went on to win the second ODI by 50 runs.

First Published: Sep 21, 2017 16:20 IST