Australia dispatched India by relative ease in the first ODI of the three match series, and Steve Smith’s incredible hundred proved to be the difference. The former Australia captain scored 105 runs off just 66 balls to lift his team to 374/6. On the Indian side, skipper Virat Kohli could not get going, getting caught out at 21.
The total proved to be too much for India, as the Aussies kept chipping in with wickets at regular intervals. Australia got the job done with relative ease in the end and started the series with a 66-run win, and Virat Kohli’s India will have to ask themselves some tough questions.
India captain Virat Kohli refused to make any excuses for the defeat and said that his team’s body language in the field was not the best.
“We got enough time to prepare, I don’t think there’s any excuses on the field when you don’t pull up as a side. Probably the first long game we’ve played in a while, we’ve been playing T20 cricket. But having said that, we’ve all played a lot of ODI cricket,” Virat Kohli said.
“The body language after 25-26 overs was disappointing. A quality side will hurt you (if you have fielding lapses). We’ll have to find out ways of getting a few overs from a few part-timers in the side,” Virat Kohli added.
Virat Kohli also spoke about India’s intent in the chase, after watching his side stay in the game up until the wicket of Shikhar Dhawan in the 35th over.
“From the batting point of view, we had a chat briefly after the game – all of us committed to playing positively and that’s why you saw everyone go out there and play with intent. We just need to have a big innings from (one of) the top three, 130 or 140, which didn’t happen unfortunately,” Virat Kohli said.
“Hardik’s innings was an example of that (intent). At no stage did we think we might not get there. We committed to playing positive cricket and we are going to do that going forward as well. When teams put up large totals, you have to have a plan,” Virat Kohli signed off.
Steve Smith: I have found my rhythm once again
Steve Smith was rightly awarded the Man of the Match award for his stunning hundred, which was the third-fastest ton by an Australian batsman in ODI cricket. During the presentation, Smith said that after a difficult couple of months, he has finally found his rhythm.
“I’ve been searching for something for a couple of months now, unfortunately haven’t been able to find it. But a couple of days ago I started to hit the ball where I wanted it, and everything came back, the rhythm came back,” he said.
Smith also spoke about the excellent platform openers Aaron Finch and David Warner set for Australia, which allowed him to come in at number three and play his natural game.
“Finchy and Davey set an excellent platform, we could come and just take off. I wasn’t thinking too much out there, just seeing the ball and hitting it. That’s probably when I bat my best. I took a few more risks than I would normally, targeted some bowlers and fortunately it came off today,” Steve Smith said.
Published 27 Nov 2020, 18:26 IST