Advantage India: Spin Trio Stifles Australia, Restricting Them to 199


Spin Trio Stifles Australia, Restricting Them to 199

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India’s spin trio unleashed a masterclass in their first game of the 2023 ODI World Cup in Chennai, rattling the five-time champions, Australia. With just three balls remaining in their innings, Australia was bowled out for a modest total of 199. The triumphant trio of Kuldeep Yadav, Ravindra Jadeja, and R Ashwin capitalized on the typical Chepauk surface to collectively claim six crucial wickets, shifting the momentum in favor of India, who now stand as strong favorites to kickstart their World Cup campaign with a resounding victory.

Anticipated to be a pitch where spin would take center stage, the unexpected breakthrough for India came from Jasprit Bumrah. He dismissed Mitchell Marsh for a duck with a well-placed delivery that induced an outside edge, which was cleanly pouched by Virat Kohli. However, Australia’s Steve Smith displayed a positive approach, notching a couple of boundaries in just four deliveries.

Smith and David Warner then intensified their attack, finding the boundary three times in a single over from Hardik Pandya. This forced Rohit Sharma to introduce Ashwin early into the game. Ashwin’s deliveries exhibited erratic bounce, making Australia cautious against spin. Despite this, Smith seized opportunities, dispatching a full delivery and a half-tracker from Hardik for boundaries.

As Smith and Warner built a steady partnership, Australia reached 71/1 after 15 overs. On a challenging surface like this one, efficient strike rotation was paramount, and the duo excelled at it. However, India’s Kuldeep Yadav shattered the partnership by dismissing Warner, who struck a return catch. As expected, the run rate slowed down with the introduction of spinners, and Australia reached 102 by the halfway mark.

The second half of the innings was dominated by the Indian side. Jadeja bowled an unplayable delivery to Smith, drifting it in, pitching, and turning it away to clip the off stump. Smith’s wicket was pivotal for India. In his next over, Jadeja piled on the pressure, claiming the wickets of Labuschagne and Alex Carey in quick succession.

Australia’s hopes took a further hit when the last recognized batting pair, Glenn Maxwell and Cameron Green, fell in quick succession. Maxwell’s leg stump was uprooted by Kuldeep, while Green gave Ashwin his first wicket. From 110/2, Australia found themselves reeling at 140/7. Despite the dire situation, Australia managed to muster a total of 199, thanks to valuable contributions from Pat Cummins and Mitchell Starc.

Brief scores: Australia 199 in 49.3 overs (Steve Smith 46, David Warner 41; Ravindra Jadeja 3/28) vs India


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