India in Australia, 3 ODI Series, 2019
Venue: Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG), Melbourne
Date & Time: 18 January 2019
RR: 4.74 | India beat Australia by 7 wickets
That is it from the game then! Australia continue to be winless. They cannot win any series be it Tests, T20Is or ODIs. Victory continues to elude them and they will hope there is some spark or a change around the corner. They have Sri Lanka coming up next with tours of India (why again?) and UAE to follow. India meanwhile, get ready to expand their tour Down Under with a visit to New Zealand for 5 ODIs and a T20I. Do join us for both series and much more. Plenty of cricketing action in the months to follow in this 'YEAR OF THE WORLD CUP!' ADIOS! TAKE CARE!
Victorious Indian skipper, Virat Kohli, also agrees that it was not an easy wicket to bat on, hence had to bat deep. Admits that the team was getting nervous but had plenty of confidence in Dhoni and Jadhav. Adds that they wanted to give Kuldeep Yadav a break and Yuzvendra Chahal, who came in, did fantastic work on his first game in Australia. Feels that it's been an amazing tour for them as they won both the Test and ODI series and drew the T20I series, which could not have been a better result. Stresses that it was a collective effort and is proud of everyone for doing so well. Adds that the team is confident and is raring to go to New Zealand and strut its stuff there.
Australian captain, Aaron Finch, feels that Australia took it down to the wire. Admits that when you give great players a couple of chances, it backfires. Rues the dropped chances as the result could have been much different had those been taken. Praises his bowlers for giving it their everything, trying their best to defend a modest total. On the dropped chances, he says those things happen. On the batting, Finch says that in this game perhaps there was lesser patience shown in the middle overs and they ended up targetting more than they should have.
MAHENDRA SINGH DHONI HAS BEEN NAMED THE MAN OF THE SERIES. The crowd is rupturing its applause. 'DHONI! DHONI! DHONI!' goes the chant. MS says that it was a slow wicket and hence one had to be careful playing the shots. Adds that he calculated how many overs every bowler had left and planned his knock accordingly. Mentions that it was important to target certain bowlers and that was the gameplan. Praises Kedar Jadhav for the support he gave and adds that his unorthodox shots take the pressure off him (Dhoni). On batting at number 4, Dhoni says that it all depends on the game situation and what the team wants from him. Feels that his batting position is irrelevant when compared to the balance of the team, so is happy to bat anywhere.
YUZVENDRA CHAHAL HAS BEEN NAMED THE MAN OF THE MATCH. Chahal says he's obviously happy to have done well in his first game in Australia. Adds that the wicket was turning so he wanted to take advantage of that by varying his pace. Continues saying that there are plenty of challenges, with the next one being in New Zealand, so is looking forward to those.
Hard to fault too much from the Aussie bowlers. They bowled with intensity, created pressure and also made opportunities. But, their fielders let them down. As many as 2 dropped catches and then 2 run out chances missed. Too much in a series finale. Jhye Richardson bounced back after a poor second ODI while Zampa showed some confidence with the ball. Please stay tuned for the presentation...
87. What is so bad about 87? Ask the Aussies. 13 short of a 100. Hence, they consider it unlucky and call it the devil's number. Normally, it is their batsmen who get dismissed on that number. Tonight, it is a man from the opposition, who came in with the team in a bit of trouble at 59/2 but has stayed unbeaten till the end on guess how much - 87. Just 6 boundaries in his knock but until he was there in the middle, no one had any doubt who would win. His average in run chases now zooms up to 103.07. Mahendra Singh Bradman. Take a bow.
Kohli and Dhoni did what they do best. Grind out oppositions. First the skipper had a 44-run stand with Dhawan. Then added 54 with his former captain. And then, when things seemed to be in Australia's control with Kohli getting out, Kedar Jadhav came out and eased out all fears. His unbeaten 121-run stand with Dhoni would have instilled a tremendous amount of confidence in the Indian think tank. Yes. Their batting looks even stronger now, with the middle order stepping up.
Coming to this match, chasing 231 should never have been difficult but circumstances made it difficult for India. Some tight opening bowling saw the visitors struggling and they were reduced to 26/1 in Powerplay 1. Then they would have lost Kohli and later Dhoni, not once but multiple times but Australia kept grassing chances. Well, good teams do not need more opportunities.
T20I series tied. Test series won. ODI series won. Boy, what a tour it has been for India. They were expected to win but they have not allowed the Aussies to win more than 3 matches in 10 outings. Superb. Take a bow.
The Indian team meanwhile is getting ready to celebrate from the dugout...
1 run needed. 6 balls in hand. 7 wickets in the bank. How many balls will this last? Here comes Marcus Stoinis...
Last ball of the match? 1 needed. A biggie?
Who bowls the 49th? No options. Peter Siddle it will be. 8-1-43-1 so far. Will this be the final over of the match as well?
A dropped catch first up... is it a run out as well? Dhoni has been dropped by Finch but there is a run out appeal against Jadhav. Referred upstairs...
Marcus Stoinis returns. 8-0-44-1 so far.
Jhye Richardson to bowl out. Last throw of the dice for Finch. 9-1-21-1 so far. Can he strike for his captain?
Peter Siddle returns. 7-1-32-1 so far.
Marcus Stoinis is back on. 6-0-31-1 so far.
Huge shout for LBW! Jhye reckons he has Dhoni plumb in front. The umpire disagrees and Australia have gambled with a review. Height could be an issue...
Some issues for Dhoni. Seems to be around the groin region. The physio has been called to the middle. There is a bowling change as well. Jhye Richardson returns. 8-1-19-1 so far.
Powerplay 3 signalled. A maximum of 5 fielders will be allowed outside the 30-yard circle till the end of the game. Adam Zampa comes back into the attack. 8-0-27-0 so far.
Marcus Stoinis comes back on.
Billy Stanlake is back.
Adam Zampa returns.
Kedar Jadhav out now to bat. Also, Billy Stanlake comes back into the bowling attack.
Jhye Richardson is back on. 5-0-12-0 so far.
Peter Siddle returns. 4-1-13-1 so far.
Is that a run out? Confusion in the middle, Dhoni sent back... referred upstairs.
Adam Zampa is called back on.
MS Dhoni will be the new man in.
Marcus Stoinis on to bowl now.
Adam Zampa will roll his arm over.
Powerplay 2 signalled. A maximum of 4 fielders will be allowed outside the ring till the 40th over. Also, Glenn Maxwell is brought on to bowl.
Billy Stanlake into the attack now.
Virat Kohli walks in at number 3, replacing Rohit.
The DRS has been taken by Australia. It's for an lbw decision against Rohit Sharma.
Peter Siddle to bowl from the other end with the second new ball.
We're back! The covers are off and the players are in the middle. The run chase is about to begin. Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan are the usual Indian openers. The target is not a massive one so they can take their time and concentrate more on laying a solid platform. For Australia, they would need wickets at regular intervals to stay in the hunt. The new-ball spell is going to be crucial. Billy Stanlake has the pace and can cause trouble to the Indian openers just like Oshane Thomas did recently. First up, it will be Jhye Richardson to steam in with the first new ball. Let's see how things pan out...