India will be making a return to international cricket later this month when they take on Australia in a full-fledged overseas tour. The Asian powerhouse last played an international series in February when their tour of New Zealand ended. Thereafter, cricket remained suspended for almost the entire year because of the coronavirus pandemic and now, things have slowly started to return to normal. The Indian Premier League has just been held successfully in the UAE and the mood is now set for an explosive series Down Under, considered one of the toughest on the planet.
India will play a three-ODI series to start with and it will be followed with a three-T20I series and a four-game Test series. Regular skipper Virat Kohli will play till the first Test of the series in Adelaide which will be a day-night affair. India-Australia series have always been a top draw, whether they are played in India or Australia, and particularly after the last tour when India accomplished a historic Test series win to pocket the Border-Gavaskar Trophy, the excitement is even more. Can India retain the coveted trophy and extend their lead over the Kangaroos in the World Test Championship points table?
However, before we get into the longer format, the twin white-ball series will set up the stage. The ODI series will kick off in Sydney on November 27 where the second game will also be played on November 29. The final game will be played in Canberra on December 2.
The ODI series will also be a closely fought one since the hosts will be keen to avenge the 1-2 defeat against the Indians in the 2018-19 series. The man of the series on that occasion was Mahendra Singh Dhoni who hit three consecutive fifties to win it for India after the visitors trailed 0-1. This time, India will not see the ace keeper-batsman since he quit international cricket recently.
India’s rivalry with Australia in the 50-over format has always been engaging although the Aussies lead the Blue Jerseys 78-52 in 140 encounters till date and 10 games ending without a result. Down Under, India have tasted even less number of wins but registered their maiden win over Australia in a bilateral ODI series in their den in 2018-19. Can Kohli’s men re-run the show this time again?
Bilateral series between India and Australia in the ODIs have not been a regular affair for a long time. The two teams played their first bilateral series in 50-overs in India in 1984-85. The next ones happened, also in India, in 1986-87 and 2000-01. Australia continued to visit India for bilateral series in 50-overs in 2007-08, 2009-10, 2010-11 and 2013-14. India played their first bilateral ODI series in Australia in 2015-16.
Australia came to India again in 2017-18, 2018-19 and 2019-20 while India played their second series Down Under in 2018-19. Overall, the two sides have played 12 bilateral series between them (10 in India, two in Australia) and both have won six series each. However, five of the six series that Australia won came on the Indian soil. India also won five home series against Australia in the ODIs.
Here we look at five bilateral series played between India and Australia in the 50-over formats in the past that generated huge excitement and interest among the supporters of both sides:
1. India beat Australia 2-1 in 3-match series in Australia in 2018-19
India were led by Kohli while Aaron Finch was in charge of Australia. The first match was played in Sydney on January 12, 2019. Australia won the toss and elected to bat and banking on half-centuries from Usman Khawaja, Shaun Marsh and Peter Handscomb, the hosts scored 288 for 5 in 50 overs. For India, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Kuldeep Yadav took two wickets each. In response, Rohit Sharma slammed a majestic century (133 in 129 balls) but he did not get enough partners.
Dhoni scored 51 but took 96 balls in the process and India managed 254 for 9 wickets in 50 overs to lose by 34 runs. Jhye Richardson bagged four wickets and was adjudged the man of the match. Dhoni completed 10,000 runs in the ODIs in this match. India, however, made a solid comeback in the next match played in Adelaide on January 15. Australia won the toss and elected to bat again and a 131 (123 balls) from Shaun Marsh took them to 298 for 9 in 50 overs.
Bhuvneshwar and Mohammed Shami took four and three wickets, respectively. India came up with an equally strong reply spearheaded by captain Kohli who struck 104 in 112 balls while Dhoni produced a much better strike rate by scoring 55 not out in 54. Dinesh Karthik made a quick 25 not out in 14 to see India home in the final over with six wickets in hand. Kohli was adjudged the man of the match as India squared the series 1-1.
The third game in Melbourne on January 18 saw Kohli winning the toss and inviting the hosts to bat first. This time, the Aussies failed to come as good with the bat, thanks to a brilliant Yuzvendra Chahal who spun them out for 230 by claiming 6 for 42 in 10 overs which remains his best show in the 50-over format till date.
Handscomb’s 58 was the highest in the Australian innings while Khawaja (34) and Marsh (39) failed to overcome the Chahal challenge. India lost Rohit early but Dhoni’s 87 not out off 114 at no.4 ensured that the visitors never lost sight of the target. His unbeaten partnership of 121 runs with Kedar Jadhav (61 not out off 57) drove India home with four balls to spare and clinch the series. Chahal was picked as the man of the match.
2. India beat Australia 3-2 in 6-match series in India in 1986-87:
It was only the second India-Australia bilateral series in history and the home team was yet to win its maiden series win against the Kangaroos in a bilateral affair. The first match was played in Jaipur on September 7. Skipper Kapil Dev won the toss in the 47-over game and elected to field first. Both Australian openers Geoff Marsh (104 off 139) and David Boon (111 off 118) hit centuries but yet the tourists could not score more than 250 for 3 in their allotted overs. Mohammed Azharuddin was the only Indian bowler to pick a wicket.
In reply, opener Kris Srikkanth paid one ton back (102 off 104) while debutant Raman Lamba hit 64 off 53 to help India overhaul the target in 41 overs with seven wickets in hand. Srikkanth was picked as the man of the match as India went up 1-0 in the long series. The second game was played in Srinagar on September 9 and this time, Australian captain Allan Border won the toss and put the hosts into bat.
In this game which was also reduced to 47 overs a side, India’s batting did not deliver as per expectations and in their allotted overs, the hosts managed to score 222 for 8 with Sunil Gavaskar scoring the highest (52 off 56). Simon Davis, Bruce Reid and Steve Waugh took two wickets each. Aussies lost Boon early but Border’s unbeaten 90 in 106 balls and Greg Matthews’ 31 secured a victory for the visitors in the penultimate over with three wickets in hand.
Kapil, Roger Binny and Ravi Shastri took two wickets each. Border was adjudged the man of the match as Australia levelled the series against the then world champions 1-1. The unusual itinerary then saw the two teams locking horns in the first Test of the series in Chennai (then Madras) that saw a historic tie. They then played the third ODI in Hyderabad on September 24 which, however, remained inconclusive.
Kapil won the toss and put Australia in to bat and they posted 242 for 6 in their 47 overs (this game was reduced too). Greg Ritchie was the highest scorer for Australia with 75 while Late Dean Jones made 48. India were 41 for 1 in the 11th over with Lamba, who opened the innings, remaining not out on 20. The series remained 1-1 with three to go. India and Australia then played in their second Test in Delhi which ended in a draw.
The fourth ODI followed thereafter (October 2) and in this 45-over game, India emerged victorious by three wickets. Kapil won the toss and invited Border to bat first. Wicket-keeper Greg Dyer’s 45 not out down the order and Jones’ 43 helped Australia overcome a disappointing batting outing to post 238 for 6. Roger Binny and Maninder Singh claimed two wickets each.
In reply, Raman Lamba’s 74 and a couple of thirties by Dilip Vengsarkar (37) and Kapil (36) and a crucial 29 not out by Shastri later in the innings helped India drive home in the 44th over with three wickets to spare. Reid was the best of the Australian bowlers with 3 for 43. Lamba was picked as the man of the match as India went up 2-1.
The fifth game took place in Ahmedabad on October 5 and Australia let a golden chance of levelling the series slip out of their hand. This time, Kapil won the toss and elected to bat but the hosts were reduced to 98 for 6. Shastri (53 off 54) and Madan Lal (30 off 54) then came together to add 67 runs to take India beyond 160. The hosts were eventually bowled out for 193 in less than 48 overs.
Davis took 3 for 35 while Dave Gilbert claimed 2 for 52. Australia overcame the early loss of Boon and were cruising well at 104 for 3 but the departure of Border (43 off 64) triggered an incredible collapse and they folded for 161 in 43.3 overs. Marsh also scored 43 off 96 balls and the visitors were looking strong as he put up 69 runs with his skipper for the second wicket. Shastri took 2 for 23 along with Kapil (2 for 18) to back his batting effort and was picked as the man of the match.
India took an unassailable 3-1 lead in the series with one match to go. The sixth and the final match of the series was played in Rajkot and in this 48-over game, Border won the toss and asked India to bat first. Lamba scored a century (his only in international cricket) as an opener while Kapil made 58 off 31 at no.5 to power the hosts to 260 for 6 in their stipulated overs.
Steve Waugh was the best of the Australian bowlers with 2 for 50. Australia came up with a steady chase spearheaded by Border (91 not out off 88) and Jones (55 off 42). They reached the target in 46.3 overs, losing only three wickets in the process to salvage some pride. Border was adjudged the man of the match while India registered their first-ever bilateral ODI series win over Australia. Lamba was picked as the man of the series.
3. Australia beat India 3-2 in 5-match series in India in 2000-01
Australia came for their third bilateral ODI series in India in 2000-01 after a gap of 14 years and this time, they were the world champions with two crowns under their belt. Steve Waugh was leading the side while the visitors were led by Sourav Ganguly. The two teams had a nail-biting rivalry in a three-Test series before the ODIs and India eventually won it 2-1 to stop the Aussie juggernaut. The five-match ODI series started thereafter.
In the first match played in Bangalore on March 25, 2001, India won the toss and elected to bat. Rahul Dravid top-scored with 80 but it was a young Virender Sehwag whose 58 off 54 at No.6 and keeper Vijay Dahiya’s 51 off 39 that gave the home team the necessary push to go past 300. India were all out for 315 in 49.5 overs with three Australian bowlers (Glenn McGrath, Damien Fleming and Ian Harvey) taking two wickets apiece.
Sehwag then produced magic with the ball by taking three wickets for 59 along with Javagal Srinath (3 for 49) to bowl out Australia for 265 in the 44th over. Zaheer Khan took two wickets. Opener Matthew Hayden fell for 99 while Michael Bevan made 49. Sehwag was the man of the match. The second game in Pune (March 28) saw Ganguly winning the toss and batting first yet again.
Hemang Badani hit 100 in 98 balls (his only international ton) and VVS Laxman made 51 in 86 balls but no other Indian batsmen could produce a decent score. McGrath, Fleming and Nathan Bracken took two wickets each and India finished at 248 for 9 in 50 overs. The visitors made no mess of their chase this time with openers Mark Waugh (133 not out off 138) and Hayden (57 off 81) giving them a solid platform for Bevan (33 not out) to give the final touches.
Australia drove home in the 46th over, losing only two wickets to level the series 1-1. Zaheer took the only wicket that fell and Mark Waugh was adjudged the man of the match. The third game in Indore on March 31 saw Australia winning the toss and sending the hosts to bat first. Sachin Tendulkar had a magnificent outing with the bat as he belted 139 runs in 125 balls and became the first batsman to complete 10,000 runs in the 50-over format.
He added 199 runs with Laxman (83 off 88) and India ended up at 299 for 8 in 50 overs with a slow finish. McGrath took three for 52 (he became the third Australian bowler to take 200 ODI wickets) and Fleming took two for 34. Australia were placed well at 102 for 1 but once Adam Gilchrist fell for 63 off 70, the visitors collapsed and were bowled out for 181 in the 36th over. Ajit Agarkar and Harbhajan Singh took three wickets each while Srinath claimed a couple. India had a big win by 118 runs with Tendulkar picked as the man of the match.
Waugh won the toss in the must-win game in Visakhapatnam played on April 3 and chose to bat first. A couple of hundreds from Hayden (111 off 113) and Ricky Ponting (101 off 109) saw the visitors posting a formidable total of 338 for 4 in 50 overs. Bevan’s 43 not out off 41 and some cameos from captain Waugh (35 off 24) and Shane Lee (25 not out off 11) did give little chance to the hapless Indian bowlers to make a comeback. Tendulkar led the chase with 62 off 38 but India’s middle order failed to fire.
The hosts were reduced to 169 for 8 but Zaheer (29 off 28) and Harbhajan Singh (46 off 34) added 59 runs for the ninth wicket to give the team’s total some respectability. India were all out for 245 in 45 overs to lose by 93 runs. Shane Warne and Steve Waugh took three wickets each while McGrath and Fleming took a couple apiece. Hayden was the man of the match as Australia squared the series 2-2. The decider was played in Marga on April 6. Ganguly won the toss and chose to bat first.
The captain eventually returned among runs with 74 off 83 while Laxman scored a ton (101 off 107) and the hosts finished at 265 for 6 in 50 overs. Ian Harvey took 2 for 49. Australia came up with a solid start with their openers putting up 70 in less than 11 overs. Gilchrist made 76 off 60 while Hayden scored 36 off 42. India managed to pull things back by taking the sixth Australian wicket on 202 in the 40th over and sensed a chance.
But Bevan stood like a rock to remain unbeaten on 87 in 113 balls and Harvey made a crucial 25 not out off 26 balls to take Australia home in 48 overs to bag the series 3-2 with a four-wicket victory. Srinath and Tendulkar took three wickets each. Bevan was picked the man of the match while Hayden finished as the man of the series.
4. India beat Australia 2-1 in 3-match series in India in 2019-20
It is not often that Australia make overseas tours early in the year because of their home commitments but the year 2020 saw an exception. Aaron Finch led the Kangaroos for a brief tour of India featuring three ODIs. The first match was played in Mumbai on January 14 and the visitors knocked out the hosts by 10 wickets to go 1-0 up. Finch won the toss and sent Virat Kohli’s team to bat first. Shikhar Dhawan top-scored with 74 off 91 while KL Rahul made 47 off 61.
India were bowled out for 255 before 50 overs with Mitchel Starc taking three for 56 and Pat Cummins and Kane Richardson chipping in with two wickets apiece. Australia then made a mockery of the Indian bowling with openers David Warner (128 not out off 112) and captain Finch (110 not out off 114) winning it for their side (Australia’s biggest win against India in terms of wickets) with more than 13 overs to spare. Warner was picked as the man of the match.
In the second game played three days later in Rajkot, Finch won the toss once again and did the same — sent India in to bat. The Indian batsmen fired in unison in this game with Dhawan blasting 96 off 90, Rahul 80 off 52, Kohli 78 off 76 and Rohit Sharma 42 off 44 to take their side’s total to 340 for 6 in 50 overs. Spinner Adam Zampa was most successful Australian bowler with three for 52 and Richardson took two for 73.
The Australian response fell short of the expectations with only Steven Smith (98 off 102) and Marnus Labuschagne (46 off 47) putting up some hope. The duo added 96 runs for the third wicket to keep Australia in the hunt but once Labuschagne fell in the 31st over, it was only a case of catching up for the Kangaroos. The hosts went down fighting to get folded for 304 in the final over to lose by 46 runs.
Mohammed Shami took three for 77 while Navdeep Saini, Ravindra Jadeja and Kuldeep Yadav (completed 100 wickets in this game) took two wickets each. It now came down to the decider. The third match was played in Bangalore on January 19 and it was a clash of two titans — Smith and Sharma. Finch won the toss and elected to bat first. Powered by Smith’s 131 off 119 and Labuschagne’s 54, Australia posted 286 for 9 in 50 overs.
Shami claimed four for 63 and Jadeja took two for 44. After the break, it was all Sharma (119 off 128) and Kohli (89 off 91) who added 137 runs for the second wicket to lay the foundation on which Shreyas Iyer (44 not out off 35) delivered the final punches. The hosts overhauled the target losing just three wickets in 47.3 overs to clinch their second successive bilateral ODI series coming from behind. Sharma was adjudged the man of the match while Kohli was picked as the man of the series.
5. India beat Australia 3-2 in 7-match series in India in 2013-14
Australia played India in a seven-match ODI series in October 2013 and it was the third time in history. Australia won the two seven-game series that were played before — by identical margins of 4-2. George Bailey’s side was looking to make it three in a row as it took on Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s side, the reigning world champions at that time.
The first match was played in Pune on October 13. Bailey won the toss, elected to bat and then showed the way ahead with 85 in 82 balls. Aaron Finch scored 72 off 79 while the late Phil Hughes made 47 off 53. The visitors ended up with 304 for 8 in 50 overs. For India, Ravichandran Ashwin and Yuvraj Singh took two wickets each.
India had a decent start to their chase and were comfortably placed at 137 for 2 in the 28th over when Suresh Raina’s promising innings of 39 came to a halt. Virat Kohli top-scored for the hosts with 61 while Rohit Sharma made 42. But others did not put up enough show as the hosts got all out for 232 in the final over to lose by 72 runs. James Faulkner took three for 47 while Clint McCay and Shane Watson claimed two wickets each. Bailey was the man of the match.
The second game was played in Jaipur on October 16 and India made a strong comeback into the series. Bailey won the toss again and powered by five half-centuries from the top five — Bailey 92 not out in 50 balls, Hughes 83 off 103, Watson 59 off 53, Glenn Maxwell 53 off 32 and Finch 50 in 53 — Australia put up a mammoth total of 359 in 50 overs. Vinay Kumar was the best Indian bowler with two wickets but conceded 73 runs in the process.
The Indian side came with a massive reply and overhauled the steep target with nine wickets and more than six overs to spare! Rohit remained not out on 141 off 123 while Kohli blasted an unbeaten 100 in just 52 balls. Shikhar Dhawan, the other opener, fell for 95 in 86 balls. Faulkner was the only Australian bowler to pick a wicket. Rohit was adjudged the man of the match as India levelled the series 1-1.
The third encounter took place in Mohali on October 19. Bailey won his third toss in a row and sent India to bat first. The top-order folded easily but skipper Dhoni slammed 139 not out in 121 balls to give Kohli (68 off 73) a solid partnership of 72 runs. Ashwin’s 28 off 35 down the order gave Dhoni another key assistance and the sum total of these efforts saw India reaching 303 for 9 in their 50 overs.
Mitchell Johnson took 4 for 46 to be the best Australian bowler. India did well to keep Australia’s chase under check and picked their sixth wicket on 213. But Faulkner’s 64 not out at No.8 off just 29 balls gave top scorer Adam Voges (76 not out off 88) saw the visitors having the last laugh as they reached the target with three balls to spare. Faulkner was picked as the man of the match as Australia went up 2-1.
The fourth match in Ranchi on October 23 remained inconclusive because of rain. Dhoni won the toss and sent Bailey’s side to bat first. The Australian captain again came to the party by belting 98 in just 94 balls. His 153-run partnership with Maxwell (92 off 77) for the fifth wicket saw the Kangaroos overcoming the early blows to post 295 for 8 in 50 overs.
Mohammed Shami took three wickets for 42 while Ashwin took two for 57. India were 27 for no loss in 4.1 overs when rain intervened and the game was washed out. Australia maintained their 2-1 lead with three to go. The fifth match in Cuttack on October 26 was a complete wash-out with even the toss not taking place. India were now left to win both the remaining games to avert a series loss.
The important sixth game of the series was played in Nagpur on October 26. Dhoni won the toss and sent Australia to bat first and again, a run-feast was witnessed. Bailey continued with his golden touch with the bat, belting his career-best ODI score of 156 in 114 deliveries while Watson made 102 off 94 balls. The two put on 168 runs for the third wicket and Adam Voges’ late-innings cameo of 44 not out in 38 balls saw the visitors totalling 350 for 6 in 50 overs.
Spinners Ravindra Jadeja and Ashwin claimed two wickets each. India came up with a solid reply after the break with their openers Rohit (79 off 89) and Dhawan (100 off 102) adding 178 runs in less than 30 overs. Even after the Australians managed to dismiss the openers when the Indian score was 234, it was Virat Kohli’s magnificent 115 not out in 66 balls that never allowed the chase to go off track.
Dhoni came up with 25 not out off 23 to finish the game in style with Kohli and India levelling the series 2-2 with one to go. Johnson claimed two wickets while Kohli finished as the man of the match. The decider was played in Bangalore on November 2 and Australia won the toss and sent India to bat first. It was a decision that Bailey perhaps regretted for a long time as Rohit Sharma wrested the initiative from the word go to slam a majestic double hundred (209 off 158).
Dhawan scored 60 off 62 and Dhoni gave the icing on the cake in the later stages with 62 not out off 38 as India raced to 383 for 6 in 50 overs. Xavier Doherty was the best of the Australian bowlers but he went for a lot of runs — two for 74 in 10 overs. Australia had an ordinary chase with the in-form Bailey (4) returning in the hut in the 16th over and the team score reading 70 for 3. Brad Haddin (40 off 49) was back soon and when Voges (4) returned in the 22nd over, half of the Australian side was back into the pavilion with only 132 runs on the board.
Glenn Maxwell, who made a brisk 60 off 22 balls, was also dismissed soon after and the Indian supporters were busy calculating how crushing the defeat would be. But in came James Faulkner and the pacer put up a fight that every cricket lover on and off the ground will remember for times to come. He blasted 116 off 73 and was given worthy support by Watson who came out to bat at No.8 and scored 49 off 22.
The two added 67 runs but even after Watson fell as the seventh wicket, Faulkner went on hunting for the target and with the tail-enders, he powered Australia to 326 in 45.1 overs when he himself fell as the final wicket. Shami and Jadeja took three wickets each while Ashwin took two. India won by 57 runs to clinch the series 3-2 and Rohit was adjudged the man of the match. Kohli was adjudged the man of the series.
Source: The source of this content is our cricket news platform Crictracker.
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