Australia target CWC win after stunning India

MS Dhoni

CricketShane Warne Bishan Singh Bedi weigh in on MS Dhoni’s importance in Team India’s lineup Debanu Das March 13 2019 12.10

His India counterpart Virat Kohli felt Australia played "exactly" how his team had played Down Under.

Coach Justin Langer said he was "incredibly proud" of a team who also swept the two-match Twenty20 series.

Marcus Stoinis, returning from a thumb injury, and Ashton Turner, another hero from Australia's thrilling fourth ODI win, both contributed 20, and Jhye Richardson added a breezy 29 down the order, but wickets continued to tumble and a score of 272 was ultimately all the tourists could muster. India have been playing non-stop cricket since the fag end of the past year when they toured Australia, New Zealand. They were braver in pressure situations, especially in the last 3 games, the way they handled the pressure, they really deserved to win. The team is yet to announce their squad for the World Cup.

From dismantling New Zealand in their den, and hardly breaking a sweat in the process, to being outplayed at home, what went wrong for India one would wonder - the basics as it turned out.

Adam Zampa took three wickets to lead Australia's bowling at Delhi's Feroz Shah Kotla ground. Moreover, he is at the second place in the list of Australian players scoring most runs in a five-match ODI series by amassing 383 runs in the recently-concluded series.

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There were several players in the Australian team who produced outstanding performances, most notably opener Usman Khawaja, who was the highest scorer of the series with two centuries and an equal number of half-centuries. Kohli holds the record of completing 8,000 ODIs runs in fewer innings than anyone - 175 innings.

"We know how hard it is to win in India", he said. The record is held by former Windies pacer Patrick Paterson who took 17 wickets in 1987/88. It was India which started Australia's losing streak two years ago, beating them 2-1 in India.

The hosts were bowled out for 237 as Australia claimed victory. Those small moments in the game, to just let them drift away and India win the series.

MS Dhoni's batting abilities have divided opinions sharply of late but just how crucial his tactical acumen is to the ODI squad was proved in the series defeat. Moreover, this was India's first ODI series defeat under the leadership of Virat Kohli at home.

This was the first time Australia overcame a 0-2 deficit to win a five-match series, and they did it without their frontline pace pair of Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood. The four instances are - South Africa against Pakistan in 2003, Bangladesh against Zimbabwe in 2005, Pakistan against India in 2005 and South Africa against England in 2016.

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