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AUS v IND, 3rd ODI, report

Hit For Six!

India beat Australia by 13 runs in the third ODI at the Manuka Oval. However, with victories in the first two matches, the hosts took the series 2-1.


The win also helped India secure their first points in the ICC Men's Cricket World Cup Super League.

In a game that swung back and forth until the final few overs, India reigned supreme to register their first win on the tour. With 39 needed off six overs and Glenn Maxwell in excellent touch, the game seemed Australia's for the taking, but Jasprit Bumrah cleaned up the Australian middle-order batsman to swing the game India's way. 

Maxwell's second half-century in as many games came after a solid foundation laid by skipper Aaron Finch, who was aided by all-rounder Moises Henriques, who was promoted to no.4. 

Finch lost his new partner at the top, Marnus Labuschagne, early as debutant T Natarajan picked up his maiden ODI wicket. Steve Smith was dismissed for seven, nicking a Shardul Thakur delivery down the leg-side. However, with Henriques holding up one end, Finch, aided by a dropped chance from Shikhar Dhawan earlier in the game, went on the charge.

He reached his half-century with a six off Ravindra Jadeja but lost Henriques soon, once again to Thakur, who bowled a good-looking spell. Jadeja sent back Finch a little after that and took a fine catch in the deep as Kuldeep Yadav accounted for debutant Cameron Green, who looked impressive in his short stay. 

The two wickets dented Australia's momentum, but Maxwell and Alex Carey stitched together a half-century stand where Carey did the bulk of the scoring. His dismissal, off a run-out, pulled the trigger that saw Maxwell take charge of the run-chase. It didn't last long after his half-century, though, as Bumrah found the big breakthrough that effectively sealed the contest. Ashton Agar tried to delay the inevitable, but was dismissed with three overs to go as Natarajan claimed his second wicket.

Earlier in the day, India opted to bat first with Shubman Gill opening the innings alongside Shikhar Dhawan. The openers didn't last long as Dhawan stepped out to drive Sean Abbott straight to cover. The resurrection work from Virat Kohli and Gill was picture perfect while it lasted but the opener was dismissed trying an extravagant sweep off Agar, only to miss the shot and be trapped in front. 

Adam Zampa and Agar kept the Indian scoring rate on a leash and the rewards came when Shreyas Iyer and KL Rahul were dismissed in the space of three overs with the two spinners sharing spoils.

An in-form Hardik Pandya and Kohli resuscitated the innings, but Australia struck a massive blow when Josh Hazlewood overturned a decision after Kohli nicked one behind. The half-century from the Indian skipper, however, laid the groundwork for the Indian lower middle-order. 

At 152/5, India seemed to have lost their way, but Pandya and Ravindra Jadeja had other ideas as they resisted first, and attacked later in a well-paced partnership that gave this visitors a major lift. 

Jadeja started slowly, ambling along to 18 in 31 balls before unfurling a range of strokes to race to a spectacular half-century. Pandya, who had fought fire with fire in the early half of his innings, played second-fiddle in the last five overs as Jadeja slammed 41 in 15 balls.

The unbeaten 150-run stand, the best for the sixth wicket or lower in Australia, gave India a massive chance in the game despite the high-scoring nature of the Manuka Oval wicket. In the end, it proved to be just enough as they nudged Australia by 13 runs.

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