The second ODI between India and Australia on Sunday in Sydney broke television viewership records in Australia. The home side humbled the visitors by a 51-run margin. Steve Smith notched his 11th ODI hundred. It was also his fifth against the men in blue after he made another ton in the first ODI.
According to a pay channel Fox Sports, an audience of a record 5,85,000 tuned in across the Foxtel platforms and Kayo on Sunday. Even in the first ODI on Friday, about 4,70,000 people watched on Foxtel.
To put an idea of how huge these numbers are- the ODI on Sunday between India and Australia had higher ratings on PayTV than that of the 2015 World Cup final between the hosts and New Zealand.
The craze for cricket has increased a lot. Not long ago, the final of the Women’s T20 World Cup at the MCG shattered all records with an attendance of over 85,000 people.
Fox Sports executive director, Steve Crawley said. “How good’s the cricket. The women are the best in the world and now Australia’s ODI men’s team is performing better than we’ve seen in modern times against top-rated India and Virat Kohli – it doesn’t get any better,”
“Beginning the summer with the white ball has proven to be a hugely successful formula for Cricket Australia,” he added.
Virat Kohli to miss the last three Tests versus Australia
Australia has taken an unassailable lead in the ODI series. The 3-match T20I series will commence on 4th December followed by a 4-match Test series. The much-awaited Border-Gavaskar series will begin on 17th December with a day-night Test in Adelaide followed by the Boxing Day Test in Melbourne, New Year’s Test in Sydney, and the last Test match in Australia’s fortress, Brisbane.
Indian captain, Virat Kohli will miss out on the last three Test matches as he will return to India to attend the birth of his first child with his wife and Bollywood actress, Anushka Sharma. He has been granted paternity leave by the BCCI and will lead the side in the ODIs, T20Is, and the first Test in Adelaide. Ajinkya Rahane is likely to captain the team in the last three games.