India’s death bowling in Indore ODI vs Australia proves game-changing
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India’s death bowling in Indore ODI vs Australia proves game-changing

Aaron Finch’s century and Steve Smith’s gritty fifty had put Australia on course for a massive total but India turned the momentum of the Indore ODI with an inspired death bowling performance.

india vs australia 2017 Updated: Sep 24, 2017 23:07 IST
Siddharth Vishwanathan
Siddharth Vishwanathan
Hindustan Times, Indore
India vs Australia,Indian cricket team,Asutralian cricket team
Jasprit Bumrah performed well in the death overs for India vs Australia in the third ODI in Indore on Sunday.(PTI)

Aaron Finch had made a grand comeback by blasting his eighth century after missing the first two games. He shared a 152-run stand with Steve Smith, who also continued his golden form against India with another fifty. Australia finally had gotten a great start from which they could dictate the course of the match. After 40 overs, they were 234/2 and looking good for a score in excess of 330 on a flat Holkar Stadium wicket. (India vs Australia 3rd ODI: HIGHLIGHTS)

Finch’s dismissal for 124 in the 38th over had given nothing much to cheer. Smith was going strong and they had big-hitters like Glenn Maxwell and Marcus Stoinis to provide fireworks. (India vs Australia 3rd ODI: SCORECARD)

However, the Indian death bowling delivered a game-changing performance. The last 10 overs yielded only 59 runs and it made a huge difference. Chasing a target of below 300 gave India all the momentum and they won the third game by five wickets to clinch the series.

Glenn Maxwell’s struggles

In the previous two ODIs, Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav had tied down Australia with their variations. At such a situation, bowling Chahal at the death could have been a risky option for Virat Kohli. However, it proved to be decisive.

READ | Rohit Sharma’s blazing fifty boosts India in Indore ODI vs Australia

Prior to the 40th over, Jasprit Bumrah had conceded just two runs, with Maxwell struggling. In the 41st over, Chahal gave away only two runs. Eight dot balls in two overs put the pressure on Australia and they cracked.

The first to go was Smith in the 42nd over. In the quest for quick runs, Smith miscued a lofted shot off Kuldeep to be caught at long off. Having lost Finch a couple of overs before, losing a well-settled Smith for 63 resulted in loss of momentum. In the 43rd over, Chahal snapped up Maxwell for the third time in the series. The right-hander’s tally of five from 13 balls meant that the game had turned in India’s favour.

READ | Ajinkya Rahane continues great form with fifty in 3rd ODI vs Australia

Australia suffer in death overs

With Smith, Maxwell back in the pavilion, Australia’s struggles mounted. A combination of dot ball pressure and stifling discipline from Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Bumrah proved to be the key factor.

After Bhuvneshwar gave away just four runs in the 45th over, Bumrah snapped up the wicket of the in-form Travis Head. With only four runs conceded, India were on top. Bumrah struck again in the 48th over when he had Peter Handscomb caught at long off for 3 with Manish Pandey taking a good catch.

READ | Hardik Pandya’s blistering 78 guides India to series win vs Australia

A total of 293/6 on a flat Indore deck represented a total that was at least 25-30 runs short. During the series, Australia’s focus was how to tackle spin. In this match, they suffered in the death overs.

First Published: Sep 24, 2017 22:25 IST