India vs Australia 2020-21: A look at the talking points as India suffer 66-run defeat in 1st ODI

First Published Nov 27, 2020, 6:35 PM IST

This is India's first international series since the pandemic kicked in. India are playing a three-match ODI series in Australia, being the defending champions, having won the series during their last visit in 2018-19. The match saw twin centuries from Aaron Finch and Steve Smith.

<p>In what could be considered a challenging and competitive comeback to international cricket, Team India suffered a severe 66-run loss against Australia in the opening One-Day International (ODI) at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) on Friday. Twin centuries from Aaron Finch and Steve Smith, followed by a four-for by Adam Zampa, was enough to outsmart the Indians, as we take a look at the talking points from the game.</p>

In what could be considered a challenging and competitive comeback to international cricket, Team India suffered a severe 66-run loss against Australia in the opening One-Day International (ODI) at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) on Friday. Twin centuries from Aaron Finch and Steve Smith, followed by a four-for by Adam Zampa, was enough to outsmart the Indians, as we take a look at the talking points from the game.

<p><strong>Is dropping Manish Pandey harsh? </strong>During the toss, Kohli revealed that he is moving in with a balanced squad. Furthermore, it was Mayank Agarwal who was tipped to open the innings. Nonetheless, what was notable that Manish Pandey was dropped. Pandey is known to be a limited-overs specialist. Also, with Mayank specialising in the longest format, it was a bit harsh to drop Pandey.</p>

Is dropping Manish Pandey harsh? During the toss, Kohli revealed that he is moving in with a balanced squad. Furthermore, it was Mayank Agarwal who was tipped to open the innings. Nonetheless, what was notable that Manish Pandey was dropped. Pandey is known to be a limited-overs specialist. Also, with Mayank specialising in the longest format, it was a bit harsh to drop Pandey.

<p><strong>Navdeep Saini experimenting too much:</strong> Saini was the second most expensive among the Indian bowlers, having given away 83 runs and claiming a wicket. Also, what was notable that he was giving away a number of slower and loose deliveries, allowing the Australians to capitalise on him. Maybe, he should just stick to his natural bowling and rely on his pace, with occasional variations.</p>

Navdeep Saini experimenting too much: Saini was the second most expensive among the Indian bowlers, having given away 83 runs and claiming a wicket. Also, what was notable that he was giving away a number of slower and loose deliveries, allowing the Australians to capitalise on him. Maybe, he should just stick to his natural bowling and rely on his pace, with occasional variations.

<p><strong>Mohammed Shami- The natural seamer: </strong>Shami was the most successful Indian bowler, claiming 3/59. It is his raw seam movement and his ability to move the ball in any given condition that makes him so successful. Undoubtedly, the Indians would be relying on him throughout the tour.</p>

Mohammed Shami- The natural seamer: Shami was the most successful Indian bowler, claiming 3/59. It is his raw seam movement and his ability to move the ball in any given condition that makes him so successful. Undoubtedly, the Indians would be relying on him throughout the tour.

<p><strong>A new look SCG pitch made things interesting:</strong> Both the players said at the toss that the pitch looks to be flat. Well, they did read it right. However, Kohli and co were confused, as to move in with which combination. Although they were right to move in with a balanced squad, the pitch behaved surprisingly well for the batsmen. Nonetheless, it did assist pacers, as India might have contemplated having a fast bowler more. They are certainly missing Hardik Pandya here.</p>

A new look SCG pitch made things interesting: Both the players said at the toss that the pitch looks to be flat. Well, they did read it right. However, Kohli and co were confused, as to move in with which combination. Although they were right to move in with a balanced squad, the pitch behaved surprisingly well for the batsmen. Nonetheless, it did assist pacers, as India might have contemplated having a fast bowler more. They are certainly missing Hardik Pandya here.

<p><strong>Mayank should have played better:</strong> Josh Hazlewood was smart enough to startle Mayank with a short one. However, ducking or leaving it instead of attempting the shot could have been better. Furthermore, Mayank looked totally confused, as to whether to pull or hook it away. Also, playing as an opener, in the pace of Rohit, it is about time he understands the responsibility and co-ordinates with his senior opening partner, Shikhar Dhawan.</p>

Mayank should have played better: Josh Hazlewood was smart enough to startle Mayank with a short one. However, ducking or leaving it instead of attempting the shot could have been better. Furthermore, Mayank looked totally confused, as to whether to pull or hook it away. Also, playing as an opener, in the pace of Rohit, it is about time he understands the responsibility and co-ordinates with his senior opening partner, Shikhar Dhawan.

<p><strong>Mayank should have played better: </strong>Josh Hazlewood was smart enough to startle Mayank with a short one. However, ducking or leaving it instead of attempting the shot could have been better. Furthermore, Mayank looked totally confused, as to whether to pull or hook it away. Also, playing as an opener, in the pace of Rohit, it is about time he understands the responsibility and co-ordinates with his senior opening partner, Shikhar Dhawan.</p>

Mayank should have played better: Josh Hazlewood was smart enough to startle Mayank with a short one. However, ducking or leaving it instead of attempting the shot could have been better. Furthermore, Mayank looked totally confused, as to whether to pull or hook it away. Also, playing as an opener, in the pace of Rohit, it is about time he understands the responsibility and co-ordinates with his senior opening partner, Shikhar Dhawan.

<p><strong>Smart utilisation of Hazlewood at the start:</strong> Hazlewood was off to a terrific start with the ball, as he got rid of three top Indian batsmen (Mayank, Kohli and Iyer). Furthermore, Finch did a smart job of utilising him with the new ball, as he was being effective, despite Hazlewood specialising at the death.</p>

Smart utilisation of Hazlewood at the start: Hazlewood was off to a terrific start with the ball, as he got rid of three top Indian batsmen (Mayank, Kohli and Iyer). Furthermore, Finch did a smart job of utilising him with the new ball, as he was being effective, despite Hazlewood specialising at the death.

<p><strong>Hardik Pandya has improved as a batsman:</strong> India might have been drubbed of an extra pacer, as Pandya is still not fit enough to bowl. However, it has allowed him to focus on his batting, which has done wonders entirely. It was evident during the IPL and even today, as he played his best ODI knock.</p>

Hardik Pandya has improved as a batsman: India might have been drubbed of an extra pacer, as Pandya is still not fit enough to bowl. However, it has allowed him to focus on his batting, which has done wonders entirely. It was evident during the IPL and even today, as he played his best ODI knock.

<p><strong>Match summary:</strong> Winning the toss, Australian skipper Aaron Finch elected to bat first on a flat track. The openers were off to an explosive start, as they managed to score 156 within 28 overs. It was followed by twin centuries from Finch (114) and Smith (105), as they posted a humongous total of 374/6. In reply, India were off to the right start, but the top middle-order batsmen lost their wickets in haste, piling more pressure on the lower middle-order batsmen.</p>

<p><strong>Brief scores: Australia 374/6 (Finch- 114, Smith 105; Shami 3/59) beat India 308/8 (Dhawan 74, Pandya 90; Zampa 4/54) by 66 runs.</strong></p>

Match summary: Winning the toss, Australian skipper Aaron Finch elected to bat first on a flat track. The openers were off to an explosive start, as they managed to score 156 within 28 overs. It was followed by twin centuries from Finch (114) and Smith (105), as they posted a humongous total of 374/6. In reply, India were off to the right start, but the top middle-order batsmen lost their wickets in haste, piling more pressure on the lower middle-order batsmen.

Brief scores: Australia 374/6 (Finch- 114, Smith 105; Shami 3/59) beat India 308/8 (Dhawan 74, Pandya 90; Zampa 4/54) by 66 runs.

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