India notched up its highest ODI score at the WACA on the 12th of Jan 2016 as Rohit Sharma continued his wonderful form against the Australian and remained 171 not out as India managed to set Australia a target of 310 to win.
They got off to a great start with debutant B Sran dismissing both the openers cheaply and gave India a commanding position. Captain Steven Smith and former captain George Bailey played extremely well as both of them scored centuries to steer Australia home and give them a 1-0 lead in the five match series.
MS Dhoni praised his batsman for adapting well to the WACA pitch and giving his bowlers a great total to defend. He wasn’t very happy with his bowling unit and was especially critical of his spinners.
In a statement, MS Dhoni said “If you see the bowling department the fast bowlers did a very good job. The spinners could have bowled a little better, in the sense that if they would have just avoided the easy boundary deliveries… If the batsman hits you over long-on and long-off, fair enough, it is always a good shot, and with a bit of risk involved. You have to make sure with the field restrictions that you don’t get hit in an area where you don’t have a fielder. That is something we will have to avoid.”
Indian captain MS Dhoni is under pressure this series as many believe he is at the end of his career and test captain Virat Kohli should take over the ODI reins as well. If Dhoni does not win this 5 match series, there could be pressure on him to just concentrate on the T20 format.
India’s second ODI against the Australians will take place on the 15th of January at the Gabba, a pitch that is known for its pace and bounce. The Indian batsman will be confident after their first outing and also because the Aussies no longer have Mitchell Johnson (retired) and Mitchell Starc (injured).
If India loses the second ODI at the Gabba, it could be very difficult for them to win the next three matches on the trot and win the series. India will most likely not make any changes to its bowling line up as Dhoni will want to give Ashwin and Jadeja one more opportunity to have a crack at the Aussies.