Ajinkya Rahane hits 4th consecutive 50 of Australia series
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Ajinkya Rahane hits 4th consecutive 50 of Australia series

India opener Ajinkya Rahane scored his fourth half-century in a row against Australia in this series.

india vs australia 2017 Updated: Oct 01, 2017 21:03 IST
Bihan Sengupta
Bihan Sengupta
Hindustan Times, Nagpur
India vs Australia,Ajinkya Rahane,Rohit Sharma
Indian cricketer Ajinkya Rahane celebrates after scoring a half-century during the fifth ODI against Australia at the Vidarbha Cricket Association Stadium in Nagpur on Sunday.(AFP)

Ajinkya Rahane scored his fourth consecutive half-century of the series as India got off to a fine start in their chase of 243 against Australia in the final ODI at the Vidarbha Cricket Association Stadium in Nagpur on Sunday. (IND v AUS blog | Scores)

It was a change of roles for the openers though, with Rahane leading the charge while Rohit Sharma took his time to settle down. He greeted Pat Cummins with a classic glance to open his account with a boundary in the very first over before following it up with a textbook straight drive. He then drove Nathan Coulter-Nile for yet another boundary and looked in complete control.

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However, once Rohit Sharma got into his groove, Rahane sat back and let his partner do what he does best. With the Australian skipper Steve Smith introducing spin from both ends, the openers saw off the initial overs, picking up six singles off Travis Head’s first over.

Unlike Rohit, Rahane didn’t switch gears but waited for the bad balls to smash them to the fence. The century stand came up in no time and although Rahane was on 13 when Rohit opened his account, he brought up his half-century only after Rohit did. He did bring it up in some style, lofting James Faulker over his head for a boundary.

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He had a bit of luck going his way with wicketkeeper Matthew Wade dropping him in the 22nd over but couldn’t last long as he was trapped in front by Nathan Coulter-Nile the very next over.

He did opt for the review but it proved unsuccessful. Although this was his fourth consecutive half-century, failing to convert even one of them into a century must have hurt him.

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This was also the third consecutive century stand between him and Rohit Sharma in this series.

First Published: Oct 01, 2017 20:22 IST