Australia, after its tenth consecutive defeat, played an excellent inning against India at Indore. The score of 293 seemed just enough to nick that match. However, the endeavor did not turn the table. Instead of a win Australia was handed its 11th consecutive loss. India won the match scoring 294 with five wickets with a couple of overs a ball to spare, its ninth, back-to-back. Australia's score had the figures from Aaron Finch, 124, an incredible century and the 63 off captain Steven Smith. While, India was bolstered with the scores off Hardik Pandya, Rohit Sharma and Ajinkya Rahane, 78, 71 and 70 respectively. Pandya emerged as the new hot head batsman of the team. His knock of salvaging innings for India match after match has made him the next star player.
Australia started with the partnership off David Warner and Aaron Finch that went on for 13 overs. Warner scored 42 off 44 balls hauling the score to 70. Hardik Pandya bowled him with an off-cutter brining the first wicket for India. In the next stretch, India bowlers could not control the intensity of Steven Smith and Aaron Finch. In these overs, Australia was looking for a 350 plus score as projected by the captain before. Finch was striking off the spins to cross the boundary, while Smith working on his foot works and flicks becoming out of control for bowlers. In 36 overs, Australia was at 206 for 1.
Kuldeep Yadav was beaten for most of the runs by Finch. Still, he was the one to pick up the wicket. It was in the next over, to the one when Finch stuck sixes off the bowler. It was a breakthrough for India. The bowlers found a pace to keep the run rate under control. Glenn Maxwell became the 100th stumping wicket for MS Dhoni on the delivery from Yuzvendra Chahal. In the last six overs, Australia could score only 38 runs under Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Jasprit Bumrah.
India's chase had the winning momentum right from the beginning. The opening partnership of 139 runs in 130 balls was enough to bleak Smith's hope in the match. Rohit Sharma was batting formidable with his stroke-play. Playing 62 balls, he scored 71 runs. There were 6 fours and 4 sixes in the stretch. On the other end Ajinkya Rahane was pulling the strings to keep runs flowing with his strike. Rahane scored 70 off 76 balls hammering 9 fours. After this long opening stand, both batsmen came back at the gap of 12 balls. Pandya walked in at number 4. The third wicket stand between Pandya and Virat Kohli was 56. After Virat Kohli, Kedar Yadhav followed. The chase required 88 off 88 balls India losing the fifth wicket after 35 overs.
Manish Pandey walked the mile with Hardik Pandya scoring 36 off 32 balls, remaining unbeaten. The fifth wicket partnership brought 78 off 63 balls, turning the victory to a calk walk. Pandya played to the 46th over, pulling the chase to 284. The player scored 78 off 72 balls with a flurry of five fours and four sixes. For his batting as well as bowling spree, he won the Player of the Match. MS Dhoni came to bat in the final stretch for 3 runs, walking the final stretch to win. It is a series clinch for India leaving the final two dead-rubbers for Australia.
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