Australia kicks off the 3 match T20I series against India with a fantastic victory. They chased down a record total of 208 runs in just 19.2 over to register a 4 wicket victory.
Australian captain Aaron Finch won the toss and chose to bowl first on a level surface where dew is expected.
Both teams wanted to try out different combinations as Australia was without Warner, Marsh, and Stoinis and had a rather inexperienced middle order. Jasprit took a game off as India fielded two spinners in Axar and Chahal. Since the wickets in India are slower, it was a no-brainer to play with two spinners.
India’s batting prowess
India got off to a shaky start after losing both Rohit and Virat in rapid succession. Kl Rahul appeared determined to triumph after a poor showing in the Asia Cup and was at his ferocious best. He stunned Australia with a soaring six over midwicket to welcome new-ball bowler Hazlewood.
Pretty impressive for someone who is frequently chastised for being a ‘stat-padder.’ Suryakumar Yadav’s berth in the team has been secured as he scored noteworthy runs, falling three runs short of a well-deserved fifty.
The Aussies love hunting in pairs, don’t they? They struck out the two well-positioned batters again in quick succession, bringing in two new batters at the crease. They were not prepared for what transpired next.
A ballon d’Or year may be in store for Indian all-rounder Hardik Pandya, who again stayed till the end to propel his side to a mammoth 208.
Australia’s blistering start to second inning
With a big score to chase, Australia’s skipper, Aaron Finch, began with a six off the first ball he faced. Wicket Keeper stood up to the stumps to prevent the batter from moving down the track, thus cutting down the swing. For the first time in any version of the game, Cameron Green opened the innings, and his first four balls went for four boundaries.
Axar Patel excelled yet again by moving the captain back, as the onus was now on Smith and Green. The Indians were too careless on the field, dropping two sitters before Virat exemplified how it is done by holding on to a skier. Axar and Umesh brought India back into the game by striking in pairs to see off Australia’s top order.
With the Aussies needing over 50 runs in the last four overs, Matthew Wade transformed the game by taking on one of India’s top death bowlers, Harshal Patel, for over 20 runs. He brought his experience to the game, guiding newcomer Tim David, who is reputed to be one of the best hitters, and making him play second fiddle. Wade took over as the equation was reduced to requiring less than a run a ball in the last over as Australia sought their highest-ever total.
Indian bowler’s struggle during death overs
India set a negative record by allowing a team to chase down a total of more than 200 at home for the second time in the same calendar year. It’s easy to get on someone’s back when they’re under performing, but what needs to be understood here is that India are experimenting with their team to find the perfect combination for the World Cup.
Some players’ positions have been determined; they are competing for their third seamer and finisher. With two more games and a series against South Africa ahead, I’m sure they’ll find answers. Well done, Australia; chasing down a massive total while missing three regular players is an impressive feat. Cheers, all good.