Cricket Australia. (Photo Source: NOAH SEELAM/AFP via Getty Images))
It would be an understatement to say that India were beaten comprehensively by Australia in the second ODI as Steve Smith’s side sent the record books tumbling in an astounding victory. Initially, it was Mitchell Starc, who capitalized on some lacklustre batting from the Indians to roll them over for just 117 runs on the board.
Then came the carnage of Travis Head and Mitchell Marsh who added 121 runs in just 11 overs to make a mockery of the Indian total. The returning Indian skipper Rohit Sharma heads into the series finale in Chennai with plenty of headaches following an embarrassing defeat in the second ODI.
Here are the talking points from the 2nd ODI:
Sizzling Starc too hot to handle for Indian batters
Australian left-arm pacer Mitchell Starc was almost unplayable in the first ODI at the Wankhede, and the 33-year-old transcended to another level in Visakhapatnam. He accounted for both the Indian openers and wrecked the middle order after dismissing last match’s hero KL Rahul and Suryakumar Yadav on consecutive deliveries. His 5/53 in the second ODI means that he is only behind the legendary Waqar Younis and Muttiah Muralitharan in the list of cricketers with the most five-wicket hauls in ODIs.
Frequent top-order failures a concern for India
Despite the return of influential skipper Rohit Sharma to the starting eleven in the second ODI, the Indian top-order struggled for a second match running. It has become a reoccurring theme of late for the Men in Blue, and the team management will have to take a hard look at their batters with the 50-over World Cup on the horizon. Suryakumar Yadav’s place in the starting eleven in hanging by a thread as he succumbed to a first-ball duck against Mitchell Starc for a second consecutive match.
Mitchell Marsh and Travis Head’s carnage blew away the bowlers
Yes, the target set by India was modest at best, but the Australian opening pair seemed to be batting on a different wicket altogether, especially Mitchell Marsh. The explosive batter recorded his second consecutive half-century of the series, smashing 66 runs in just 36 deliveries. Head wasn’t too far behind as he compiled a half-century in just 30 deliveries to chase down India’s total in just 11 overs.
Losing skipper Rohit Sharma said –
If you lose a game, it is just disappointing, We didn’t apply ourselves with the bat. Didn’t put enough runs on the board. It wasn’t a 117 wicket. Kept losing wickets and that didn’t allow us to get the runs we wanted. Once we lost Shubman in the first over, myself and Virat got 30-35 runs quickly. But then I lost my wicket and we lost we lost a couple of wickets back to back. That put us on the back foot. It’s always tough to come back from that situation. Today wasn’t the day for us. Starc is a quality bowler. He has been doing it for Australia with the new ball. He kept bowling to his strength.
Winning skipper Steve Smith said –
Was a quick one. Only 37 overs you don’t see usually. Starc with the new ball put them under pressure. I didn’t know how the wicket was going to play. There was no total in mind. We were just trying to execute our plans. We were on the right side. Just that kind of a day when the nicks went to hand. The way Head and Marsh played at the start. They just kept going and we are able to bounce back after the last game. Nice I held on to it. Fortunate I was able to hang on to it. Hardik is a wonderful player we know.
Player of the match Mitchell Starc said –
I have learnt the trade over the years. My rhythm has been good of late. I have been bowling a little fuller than other guys. I have a definite role in the team. My conversations are a little different compared to someone like a Cam Green. Both the decks have helped the seamers. There was movement in the air in Mumbai as well. My role is to attack the stumps and bring every form of dismissal into play.
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