India vs Australia 2020-21: Aaron Finch and Steve Smith hammer India as Australia post mammoth 374/6
India are taking on Australia in the first One-Day International, in Sydney, as it is the former's first international series in the prevailing pandemic era. The hosts are off to an explosive start, scoring more than 350 runs, thanks to twin centuries from Aaron Finch and Steve Smith.
In what could be considered a thumping start to Australia's home season, they scored a mammoth total of 380/5 in the opening One-Day International (ODI) against India, at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG), on Friday. It was blistering twin centuries from skipper Aaron Finch (114) and Steve Smith (105) that helped them attain the total.
Winning the toss, Finch elected to bat first on a track that looked like a flat one, as they moved in with a balanced XI. Meanwhile, India had a concern with pacer Navdeep Saini, who had reported to be suffering from back spasm, prior to the game, but was fit enough to make it to the XI.
The openers, David Warner and Finch, were off to a fine start, scoring 51 runs in the powerplay. The pair looked too strong to be got rid of the Indian bowlers, as they kept scoring freely, while some near dismissal chances went against India.
It was only in the 28th over, when the Indians got the first wicket of Warner, off seamer Mohammed Shami, that too under controversial circumstances, who had edged the ball to wicketkeeper KL Rahul, as replays suggested that the bat could have hit the ground. In the meantime, it was Finch, who managed to pull off his 16th ODI century.
Nonetheless, Finch was dismissed for 114 by Jasprit Bumrah. Following his dismissal, there was some flurry of displacements. However, there was no respite for the Indians, as the onslaught was kept going by Smith.
Smith scored his half-century in just 36 deliveries, only to convert it into a century within just 62 deliveries, as he scripted some records with it. He was dismissed in the final over, for 105, by Shami. However, the damage had already been done, as Australia powered to a mammoth total of 374/6.
Among the Indian bowlers, it was Shami, who finished with the best figures of 3/59, while spinner Yuzvendra Chahal was the most expensive, claiming 1/89. Also, there were ample fielding mistakes, along with a couple of dropped catches, that cost India huge in the innings.
Brief scores: Australia 374/6 (Finch- 114, Smith 105; Shami 3/59) vs India. India need 378 runs to win in 50 overs.