Australia vs India: 3 Things we learnt from the 1st ODI
Australia and India locked horns at the SCG on Saturday afternoon with the hosts looking to end their limited overs woes. The Australians kept their cool and won the first of three ODIs by 34 runs.
India started off brightly and sent both the Aussie openers packing before the culmination of the power play. However, Khawaja and Marsh joined forces to resurrect the innings and set the platform for a burst in the death overs.
Handscomb and Stoinis rose to the occasion in the last quarter of the innings and helped the Aussies pile on 93 runs in the final ten overs.
Replying to the hosts’ score of 288, the visitors got off to the worst possible start and were tottering at 4-3 inside four overs. Dhoni and Rohit stitched a century stand together yet it just delayed the inevitable rather than harbour hopes of a victory.
The win provides Australia with the much-needed respite after their shocking displays against South Africa and Pakistan. In the process, they also became the first country to breach the ‘1000 wins across all formats’ barrier.
As for India, a few of their old problems resurfaced and though the odd loss shouldn’t worry them, they need to ensure that it only remains an aberration and doesn’t become the norm.
Through the lens of this article, we would look at three things that we learnt.
#3 India needs to include Kedar Jadhav in the eleven
Before the ODI series started properly, Hardik Pandya found himself in the middle of a storm following some questionable comments on national television. With the all-rounder out of the mix, India’s balance was dealt a severe blow and the think-tank had to burn the midnight oil to find the right blend. Yet, as the game progressed, it became clear that India were just a little shy off the mark.
The visitors brought in Karthik for Jadhav. Though the pair is pretty inseparable with regards to their ability with the willow, the latter’s attribute to get through a few overs, distinguishes him from the former.
At Sydney, Shami provided the Indian team a mini-scare when he left the field injured. Though he eventually returned, his absence suddenly brought to light the dearth of a sixth bowling option.
Additionally, Bhuvneshwar and Khaleel went at over a run-a-ball yet the lack of a bowler capable of turning his arm over, meant the duo was persisted with. Moreover, Karthik didn’t cover himself in glory when accorded the chance to finish off the game.
It would obviously be very naïve to expect that Jadhav would surely have gotten India over the line yet the diminutive right-hander seems better-equipped to the fifty over format than Karthik.
Jadhav surely adds bowling depth to a side that desperately lacks a bowler who can fill in at times. Thus, in Pandya’s absence, India needs to devise a method to bring him into the fold.
As funny as it may sound, Jadhav’s inclusion in the team may be more dependent on his bowling. And remember, it isn’t even his strongest suit.