AUSTRALIA. Sydney: India beat Australia by six wickets in a nail-biting match in the second T20 international match at Sydney Cricket Ground(SCG). This is India’s seventh consecutive T20 series win. India won the toss and put Australia in to bat on a batting-friendly pitch.
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Australian team began with an explosive start. Stand-in captain Matthew Wade’s knock of 58 runs was a solid start for the Australian Team. Wade was very severe on the Indian bowlers. Deepak Chahar and Washington Sundar had to face the wrath of Wade. However, Australia’s first wicket stand of 47 in 4.3 overs came to end when opener Darcy Shot was caught out on the bowling of left-arm pacer T. Natrajan.
Wade played an impressive inning of 58(32b, 10×4,1×6) and looked quite commanding. However, his innings was cut short when he was run out by Virat Kohli’s dropped catch. Trying to play over the cover, Wade offered a simple catch to Kohli. Kohli juggled and floored the catch but, he was quick to recover and throw the ball to the wicketkeeper to find Wade short off the crease. Meanwhile, Steven Smith continued his good form and scored 46(38b, 3×4,2×6).
Australians were scoring at a run rate of more than 10 runs per over. But the brilliant bowling by Natrajan stopped the Australian batting to blast at the end. Eventually, Australia managed to score 194 for 5 with some useful knocks from Glenn Maxwell and Marcus Henriques. In the end, Natrajan took 2 wickets and gave only 20 runs. Last match hero Yuzvendra Chahal was the most expensive bowler this time. He conceded 51 runs and took only one wicket.
Chasing 195 runs, Indian openers played a bit cautiously initially. However, the openers, Shikhar Dhawan, and K.L. Rahul gave a tremendous start afterward. Both were fluent in their stroke-play. In the first five overs, the Indian openers scored 56 runs. Both batsmen played their pulls and drives very effectively. Unfortunately, Rahul was the first man to depart when he was caught at the deep cover on 30(22b, 2×4,1×6).
After his departure, captain Virat Kohli came in to bat and started to score runs. Kohli was quite innovative in his shot selections today. His scoop shot of Andrew Tye’s ball was a sight for sore eyes. His fine inning was cut short after he was caught out to the wicket-keeper while chasing the wide ball. The “chase master” Kohli scored 40 runs in 24 balls along with two fours and two sixes. Dhawan and Kohli put on a good partnership. However, soon after scoring his fifty, Dhawan got out on 52(36 b, 4×4,2×6). Sanju Samson came out to bat after Dhawan’s departure. But, his promising inning came to an early halt when he was out caught at long-off for just 15(10b, 1×4,1×6).
When Hardik Pandya arrived at the wicket, India was in a need of almost 12 runs per over. With a score of 149 runs for 4 in 16.1 overs, S. Iyer arrived at the crease. At that time, India needed 46 runs in 23 balls. Iyer took no time to settle and began to play freely. His 111 meter six to Adam Zampa was a treat to watch. With 14 runs needed in the last over, Pandya hit two sixes to finish the match. Pandya was the player of the match for his quickfire 42(22 b, 3X4,2×6). Australian bowlers Daniel Sams, Tye, Mitchell Swepson, and Zampa took one wicket each. This is India’s tenth T20 international victories in a trot.