Australian top-order clinch series win against India

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Steve Smith scores second consecutive century against India / Photo: Cricket Australia 

Australia defeated India by 51 runs in the second One Day International (ODI) on Sunday at Sydney Cricket Ground, securing the series win 2-0 with a game left to play in the three-match ODI series.

Like the first ODI, it was the batting heroics that lead the Kangaroos take dominance over the guests. A century by Steve Smith stole the limelight as the batsman hit his second consecutive century this series.

Smith’s innings (104), backed by half centuries from the top and middle order batsmen helped Australia put up a massive total of 389 runs. Warner (83), Finch (60), Labuschagne (70) and Maxwell (63) all made fairly balanced contributions in the team total.

While Mohammad Shami, Jasprit Bumrah and Hardik Pandya got one wicket each, the Indian bowling seemed toothless; no one being able to make much of an impact. Navdeep Saini was the prime target of Australian batters as the bowler got smashed for 70 runs in just 7 overs.

Falling short chasing the target, India lost both its openers in the batting power play. Captain Virat Kohli, however, gave the team some momentum with his 89 runs but couldn’t lead the men in blue to victory as he lost his wicket Josh Hazlewood in the 35th over. KL Rahul and Ravindra Jadeja tried to string along the total but after the duo were sent to pavilion, the Indian batting collapsed.

For the hosts, Pat Cummins was the highest wicket-taker with 3 wickets to his name, followed by Hazelwood and Adam Zampa with two each.

Smith was awarded the Man of the Match award; his second this series. “I didn't give any chances today and I just felt good from ball one. I was able to get myself in and go hard. Nice to score some runs again for the team and get us to a good total. I thought the boys were outstanding in the field as well” the batsman said in the post-math conference, ESPNcricinfo reported.

Australia will meet India again for the third and the final ODI, which is now a dead rubber, on Wednesday at Manuka Oval, Canberra.

Australia vs India - 2nd ODI - Match Report