Australia edge out India for a 12-run win in final T20I!
Galatta | Dec 08, 2020, 07:39 pm
The limited overs leg of India's tour of Australia, came to its end today with the teams facing off in the final T20I of the 3-match series! Australia had taken the ODI series 2-1 while India bounced back to claim the T20 series with comprehensive wins in the first two matches! Aaron Finch returned to the Aussie team, in place of Stoinis and India remained unchanged. Kohli won the toss and inserted Australia to bat first. Wade continued in his amazing form from the previous match and cracked 2 boundaries in the opening over itself with another 1 off the first ball of the 2nd Over, bowled by Washington Sundar. However, Sundar got Finch for a Duck, bringing in Steve Smith to the crease. Wade continued strongly and carted Chahar for 17 runs in the 5th Over and Australia had reached 51/1 at the end of the Powerplay. Sundar returned to prise out Smith in the 10th Over, leaving Australia on 82/2 at the half-way mark of their innings. Wade got to a 2nd consecutive 50 but was trapped leg-before by Natarajan, which the umpire refused to give. However, by the time Kohli called for a review, the time had run out.
Thakur was introduced into the attack and was greeted with a 6 off his very first ball, by Wade with Maxwell hitting another boundary in the Over. Chahal got Maxwell off the last ball of the 13th Over only for Maxi to be retrieved as it turned out to be a no-ball! Maxwell punished Chahal in the 15th Over by hitting 2 monstrous 6s and got to his 50 with a 4, in the 18th Over. Thakur got Wade for 80, in the 19th Over and Maxwell earned another retrieve when Chahal dropped an easy catch. However, Natarajan returned to take out Maxwell off the 1st ball of the 20th Over before D'Arcy Short was run-out and Australia wrapped up their innings at 186/5! India had been set a target of 187 to win the match and make a clean sweep of the T20I series! India's innings began with Maxwell opening the bowling for Australia and he struck gold when he got KL Rahul for a Duck, off the 2nd ball itself! Kohli was given a reprieve when Smith dropped him on the boundary.
Kohli and Dhawan consolidated the innings and Kohli got another chance when Tye missed a return catch in the 5th Over. A productive 6th Over took India to 55/1 by the end of their Powerplay. Dhawan had just got going before a good catch by Sams sent him back to the pavillion for 28, off Swepson's bowling. India were 82/2 at the end of 10 Overs but Samson fell to Swepson in the 13th Over, before Shreyas Iyer too fell in the same Over. Pandya joined Kohli at the middle and the former notched up another half-century, along the way. In the 16th Over, Kohli launched Sams for two massive 6s, before Pandya cracked a 6, himself. This Over eased the pressure on the Indians with 56 runs needed off the last 4 Overs! Pandya crashed the 17th Over bowled by Tye for 17 runs, to further ease the nerves. However, Pandya got out almost immediately, trying to take on Zampa. This again brought in some nerves for the Indian camp, which further worsened when Kohli got out the next over, for 85. However, Thakur still showed some resolve to keep Indian hopes alive but with 27 needed off the last Over, it was too tough an ask for the tailenders. In the end, India were 12 runs short and Australia had earned a consolation win to gain some momentum before the Test series. Michael Swepson was adjudged the Player of the Match, while Hardik Pandya was selected as the Player of the Series! The Test Series begins next Thursday!