IND vs AUS: 1st ODI Review – Rahul, Jadeja guide India to victory in a low-scoring match

India won the first ODI against Australia by five wickets to take a crucial 1-0 lead in the three-match series. Mohammed Siraj and Mohammed Shami impressed with three wickets to bowl out the Australian team on just 188 runs while bowling first. Later, KL Rahul’s admirable 75* off 91 helped India easily chase the target in 39.5 overs.

India’s stand-in skipper Hardik Pandya won the toss and elected to field at Mumbai’s Wankhede Stadium. As expected, Ishan Kishan and Suryakumar Yadav started in the absence of captain Rohit Sharma. For Australia, David Warner was left out on the bench due to a fitness issue. Alex Carey also missed the game due to sickness.

Mohammed Siraj gave the hosts a terrific start with Travis Head’s big wicket in the innings’ second over. The Indian pacer bowled out Head with a big inside edge which resulted in the leg stump rooting out as Australia were reduced to 5/1, to begin with. But captain Steve Smith and Mitchell Marsh stitched a 72-run stand for the second wicket to keep the traveling side on track for a big total. Hardik gave India a breakthrough with Smith’s wicket in the 13th over. Smith scored 22 off 30 but Marsh went on to register a quick fifty.

Marsh smashed 81 off 65 with the help of 10 fours and five sixes before getting caught out on Ravindra Jadeja’s delivery in the 20th over. After Marsh’s dismissal, Australia’s innings stumbled on just 188 runs in 35.4 overs. Shami and Siraj took three wickets each while Jadeja took two for India.

The Indian team struggled to get a promising start as Australian bowlers quickly balanced the game. Marcus Stoinis dismissed the struggling opener- Ishan Kishan – in the innings’ second over as the youngster managed to score just three runs.

Star pacer Mitchell Starc completely shifted the momentum with Virat Kohli and Suryakumar Yadav’s wicket on back-to-back deliveries in the fifth over. But the in-form Shubman Gill and wicketkeeper-batter KL Rahul avoided further slipups in the powerplay overs. Starc took his third wicket of the day in the form of Gill in the 11th over and the hosts were left stranded at 39/4. Pandya joined Rahul in the middle and steadied the ship with a 44-run stand for the fifth wicket.

Pandya scored 25 off 31 before getting caught out on Stoinis’ delivery in the 20th over. Rahul continued to amass runs from one end and formed another meaningful partnership with all-rounder Jadeja for the sixth wicket. The duo remained unbeaten, showcased composure, and easily chased down the target with five wickets in hand. Rahul top-scored with 75* off 91 and Jadeja added 45* off 69. While, Starc produced the best figures for Australia, recording 3/49 in 9.5 overs.

What’s next for both teams?

Both India and Australia will travel to Visakhapatnam for the second ODI. The match is scheduled to be played at the Dr. Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy ACA-VDCA Cricket Stadium on Sunday, March 19, 2023.