India vs Australia 2019: Important takeaways from the 1st T20I
The first T20I of Australia's 2019 tour of India proved to be a thrilling encounter. Australia won the toss and opted to bowl first, and the Men in Blue were able to score just 126/7 in 20.0 overs. Australia chased down the target in a nail-biting finish.
The Aussies avenged their previous series loss against India with their 127/7 effort. Nathan Coulter-Nile played a crucial role in the match; the Aussie bowler scalped 3 wickets from 4 overs with an economy rate of 6.50. He was later adjudged as the player of the match.
The entertaining match gave all Aussie fans a moment to celebrate. The Indians, on the other hand, were brought back to earth after their successful 2018-19 tour against Australia in their own fortress.
The thrilling match promises to be just the beginning of an epic series ahead. Here are some key takeaways from the match.
1. A noteworthy comeback after controversy
KL Rahul returned to international cricket in this match. He had been serving a suspension due to his involvement in a controversial talk show.
India allowing Rahul to open the innings in the first match against Australia signifies that the management is backing him after a very tough time in his life. Rahul does deserve a second chance to clean up his act, after all.
The young Indian batsman was off the mark right away. He scored 50 runs from 36 balls with a strike rate of 138.89. Making the best use of his opportunities is the first step for Rahul to clear his black mark for good.
2. Maxwell's strong statement after a dismal IPL 2018
Much like KL Rahul, Glenn Maxwell too had a chance at some redemption. The Australian batsman is known as one of the best players in IPL, and has earned a demi-god status in India due to his successful IPL stints.
But everything came crashing down for Maxwell with his dismal performance in IPL 2018. Maxwell scored only 169 runs in 12 matches with an average of 14.08. His performance for the Delhi team was disappointing, to say the least.
Maxwell along with Aaron Finch have opted not to participate in IPL 2019 in order to focus on their World Cup preparations. But it wouldn't have been a surprise if he had opted to participate and not been bought by any franchise in the auction; such was the downturn in Maxwell's fortunes.
Nevertheless, Maxi was back with a bang in this match. He scored 56 runs from 43 balls with a strike rate of 130.23; the innings proved to be crucial for his team's victory.
Good performances like this are vital for him to make an IPL comeback in 2020.
3. A few first-time feelings for India
This is the first time India have been defeated by Australia in a T20I home game through a last ball finish. It also marks India's first two consecutive T20 international match defeats since June 2016. Additionally, this is their first loss in eight T20Is at home.
Australia have every reason to party as this was a hard-fought victory. They would want to retain this fire ahead of the upcoming matches; the Men in Blue visited and humiliated them in their home, and they have a chance pay back in kind now.
Is this the beginning of India's fall before World Cup 2019, or will the team return to their winning ways? The next few matches will reveal a lot.