India on Sunday defeated Australia by 36 runs making it two wins in two matches in the cricket World Cup competition. Chasing a target of 353, Australian batsmen started very slow and could never maintain the required run rate in the early overs of the game particularly during the first power play of the match.
David Warned scored his fifty but he got out at 59. Although Steve Smith and Usman Khwaja tried to get the momentum going but they too got out after scoring 69 and 42 runs respectively. Alex Carey, who scored his fifty in 25 balls, accelerated the run-rate towards the end, but this was too late. He remained unbeaten at 55 as his side were bowled out for 316 runs in 50 overs.
Earlier, after winning the toss and electing to bat, India set a formidable total of 352 runs for the loss of five wickets in 50 overs while playing their second World Cup match against Australia at The Oval. Shikhar Dhwan was the top scorer for the side with a brilliant knock of 117 runs.
Also contributing with the bat were Rohit Sharma (57), skipper Virat Kohli (82) and Hardik Pandya (48). Dhawan took 109 balls to score 117 runs that included 16 boundaries. This is the highest World Cup total conceded by Australians, who also appeared sloppy in the field as they dropped two key catches. For example Rohit Sharma was dropped when he was on two and Pandya received a life when he had yet to open his account.
Wicket-keeper Alex Carey dropped two catches behind the stumps.
The Australians, however, appeared to redeem themselves in the field when Marcus Stoinis held on to a stunning catch of MS Dhoni off his own bowling in the dying overs of the match.
Speaking about his century, Dhawan said, “I played it very smartly and calmly. I really enjoy playing on this ground, I have a good record here especially in ICC tournaments. I’m more than happy we got a big total on the board and we are in a good position now. I play every game with the same intensity and determination but bouncy wickets suit my game and bring the best out of me.
“I feel it is enough runs on the board. We have a great bowling side and I’m sure with their experience we will trouble the Australian batsman.”
Both India and Australia have been unbeaten in the competition so far. While Australia have won both their matches against West Indies and Afghanistan, India too started their World Cup campaign by beating South Africa by six wickets.