Australia, on Friday, beat India by 66 runs in the first ODI to take the lead in the three-match series. Playing their first match since March, Team India struggled with both bat and ball as the hosts thoroughly outplayed them at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG).
Chasing a mammoth 375, the Virat Kohli-led side ended up on 308 for 8 . Shikhar Dhawan scored 74 and Hardik Pandya (90) registered his highest ODI score but their efforts were not enough for the Men in Blue. The visitors were off to a good start with Dhawan and Mayank Agarwal adding 50 runs in just 4.1 overs.
However, India lost four wickets in quick succession to find themselves 101 for 4. At that stage it looked all over before Pandya and Dhawan steadied the ship and added 128 runs for the fifth wicket. But just when it looked like India were crawling their way back into the game both of them departed in a space of 18 runs to leave the team reeling at 247 for 6. The likes of Navdeep Saini and Ravindra Jadeja then helped the visitors cross the 300-run mark.
— BCCI (@BCCI) November 27, 2020
Earlier in the game, Australia finished their innings on 374 for 6 after Aaron Finch won the toss and decided to bat first. Finch led from the front, scoring 114 while Steve Smith scored a 62-ball ton. David Warner and Glenn Maxwell also played fine knocks, scoring 69 and 45 respectively.
Here is what Virat Kohli said:
Speaking after the game, Virat Kohli started by saying that the team had enough time to prepare for the match as he didn’t give any excuse for the poor show. He, however, pointed out that the players were playing an ODI after a long time and also expressed his disappointment over his teammate’s body language.
“We got enough time to prepare, I don’t think there’s any excuses on the field when you don’t pull up as a side. Probably the first long game we’ve played in a while, we’ve been playing T20 cricket. But having said that, we’ve all played a lot of ODI cricket. The body language after 25-26 overs was disappointing. A quality side will hurt you (if you have fielding lapses),” said Virat Kohli.
The lack of part-time bowlers and Hardik Pandya’s inability to bowl at the moment hurt India badly. Speaking on it, Virat Kohli said:
“We’ll have to find out ways of getting a few overs from a few part-timers in the side. Unfortunately Hardik is not ready to bowl yet so we have to accept that and work around it. That is an area we have looked at, which is a very big part of any team balance. Stoinis and Glenn (Maxwell) do it for Australia.”