India inflict first defeat on Australia by 36 runs
India got an impressive 36-run win over the defending champions Australia at The Oval in the first heavyweight clash of the World Cup.
Shikah Dhawan’s fine 117, combined with captain Virat Kohli and an enjoyable 48 by Hardik Pandya, helped India post -352-5 in front of the exuberant and euphoric crowd.
With wickets falling and the run-rate escalating, Alex Carey hit a 25-ball half century but it was not enough to stop Australia sliding to their initial defeat of the huge tournament.
Australia, facing what would be a World Cup record chase, grappled to accelerate albeit Steve Smith’s 69 as David Warner spent 84 balls making only 56. Bhuvneshwar Kumar removed Adam Zampa with the last ball of the match to complete with 3-50 and Jasprit Bumrah took3-61.
It was only in the late phases that they began to give India and their zealous fans any mild concern, civility of late cameos from Glenn Maxwell and Carey.
Australia will face Pakistan at Taunton on Wednesday. The effervescent India, who have managed to record victory in their first two games will play top of the table New Zealand at Trent Bridge on Thursday.
Shining Dhawan lit up the full packed Oval. It was exhilaration from the moment teams came out for the national anthem up until KL Rahul hitting the final ball of the innings for four, India’s innings were cheered by a sell-out vehement crowd.
There was a huge roar as Rohit Sharma drilled the first runs of India’s innings through point. Even a Dhawan defensive shot was cheered in the opening stages. Dhawan brought up his hundred thanks to an overthrow, he was given an extended ovation.
The atmosphere was raucous rather than nasty as India sewed up a 36-run win. India’s 352 was the highest score Australia has conceded in a World Cup and this was the first time they had failed to chase down a score in this tournament since 1999.It was smooth sailing for India.
“It’s a bit unfair at times, isn’t it,” said Finch according to The Telegraph. “It does seem to be happening more and more, you’d hate to see something like that happen in a World Cup final or a semi-final.”
Kohli was adamant the bails have to be improved. “Definitely,” he said. “This is not something you’d expect at the international level. The technology is great, the lights come on and are very precise when you make something happen but you have to smash the stumps really hard.” revealed The Telegraph.
ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup, The Oval
India 352-5(50 overs): Dhawan 117, Kohli 82, Rohit 57
Australia 316(50 overs):Smith 69,Warner 56,Carey 55*,Kumar 3-50; Bumrah 3-61
India won by 36 runs