India pulled off a handsome five-wicket win over Australia in the Second ODI at Vizag. Asked to chase a tall target of 290, India coasted home with seven balls to spare thanks to Virat Kohli's third ODI century. Kohli got able support from Yuvraj Singh and Suresh Raina who scored half centuries.
The hosts had a terrible start when debutant Shikhar Dhawan was bowled through the gate for a duck in the second ball of the innings by Clint McKay. There was a good repair job after that with Murali Vijay (15) driving nicely through covers along with Virat Kohli before the former got a feather edge to the keeper off McKay. India was pegged back at 35 for 2 in the 9th over and just like the Aussies got a superb third wicket partnership going to bounce back in the game. It was Virat Kohli steadying things along with Yuvraj Singh and the new look Aussie attack wasn't penetrative enough.
Just when India needed to up the ante, Yuvraj Singh got bowled off a slower one from Clint McKay but not before the left hander had taken the team to 172 for 3 in the 34th over. Yuvraj scored 58 from 87 balls with 5 fours in a 137-run stand for the third wicket. Virat Kohli continued to bat well despite cramps and eventually fell holing out to long on with a flat aerial hit which gifted John Hastings with a maiden ODI wicket. Kohli scored 118 from 121 balls with 11 fours and a six. All the pressure on his shoulders were released by Suresh Raina who showed plenty of courage to go over the top whenever he wanted to. The duo put on 84 runs for the fourth wicket in less than 10 overs to have India coasting along at 256 for 4 in 43.2 overs.
It was in the 44th over itself when Hastings got one to keep low to knock out the off stump of MS Dhoni (0) to leave India at 257 for 5. A wicket or two at this stage would have put severe pressure on India but the pair of Raina and debutant Saurabh Tiwary (12*) saw them through with an unbeaten partnership of 35 runs. India also had the advantage of keeping the batting powerplay late. Suresh Raina ran away with the match with a blazing 71* from just 47 balls which included 9 fours and a six. Clint McKay was the pick of the bowlers for Australia taking 3 for 55. Hauritz got lot of turn but couldn't take any wickets. The Man of the Match was given to Virat Kohli.
An amazing turnaround it was for the Aussies as they battled hard from a dull 16 for 2 in the 8th over to finish up with an imposing 289 for 3 in the allotted 50 overs! Skipper Michael Clarke finally overcame his bad form with a fifth ODI hundred and was involved in two century-run stands that not only helped Australia recover but put India under severe pressure to chase a big target under lights. Michael Hussey and Cameron White chipped in with half centuries to aid Clarke in posting a par total on what looks to be a good batting pitch.
The early overs were different though as the ball struggled to come onto the bat and the Aussie openers were struggling to get their shots past the infield. In the 4th over, left handed Shaun Marsh chopped an Ashish Nehra indipper onto the stumps to depart for a 11-ball duck. In the 8th over, Tim Paine jumped out of his crease in desperation but could only heave Nehra straight to mid on to leave Aus at 16 for 2.
Michael Hussey joined Clarke in the middle and made batting look very easy as he stroked the ball on the up with sweet timing. Clarke got going as well and the duo put up a massive 144 run stand which was broken in the 37th over. Hussey's 69 from 77 balls (with 7 fours) came to an end when he missed a pull shot to get hit on the back thigh of an Ashwin delivery. India couldn't get any wickets after this and with the pitch easing up, the Aussies blasted their way almost to the 300-run mark.
Cameron White was sensational with an unbeaten 89 from just 49 balls with 6 fours and 6 sixes! Clarke's 111* came in 139 balls with 7 fours and a six. The batting powerplay provided perfect momentum with the Aussies collecting 48 runs from the 43rd over to the 48th over. The Indian pacers generously gifted away plenty of full tosses and R Vinay Kumar deservingly got belted for 71 runs in his 9 overs! Ashwin and Yuvraj did well with the economy rates but none of the Indian bowlers could produce any wicket taking deliveries after the first 10 overs!
Toss and Teams
MS Dhoni for a change has won the toss and his decision is to bowl first in the Second ODI at Vizag. Conditions are hot and humid at the ACA-VDCA Stadium for this second ODI. Both teams have gone in with two debutants in their line up. For India, Shikhar Dhawan, the left handed opener from Delhi gets his first chance and the other debutant is left handed middle order batsman - Saurabh Tiwary from Jharkhand.
Australia has given debuts to all-rounder John Hastings (who bowls pace) and left arm quick Mitchell Starc.