Australian openers destroy Indian bowling in first ODI

Ishant Sharma out of series as Kohli blasts 'confusing' messages

By: AFP      Published: 10:45 AM, 27 Nov, 2020
Australian openers destroy Indian bowling in first ODI

Australian openers destroyed the Indian bowling in the first one-day international being played in Sydney Cricket Ground on Friday.

Electing to bat first, the Australian openers piled up 127 runs without losing any wicket in 24 hours with David Warner unbeaten on 52 and captain Aaron Finch not out on 61.

Earlier, Australia won the toss and chose to bat in the first of three one-day internationals against India at a hot Sydney Cricket Ground.

Steve Smith comes into the Australia line-up for injured all-rounder Mitchell Marsh and will bat at number three, while Mayank Agarwal will open the India innings with Shikhar Dhawan after Rohit Sharma injured his hamstring last month.

"It's great to have cricket back in Australia and to play in front of crowds will be nice," Australia captain Aaron Finch said. "The wicket looks good, hopefully we can put runs on the board and defend."

India has gone with five specialist bowlers, led by Mohammed Shami and Jasprit Bumrah.

"It's important to start well as a team, we need to start strongly and set the momentum for the matches ahead," skipper Virat Kohli said.

It is the first of three ODIs, followed by three Twenty20s next week, and comes after the Indians were forced into Covid-19 isolation since their arrival in Sydney a fortnight ago, although they have been allowed to train within a bio-secure "bubble".

They are looking to win three consecutive ODIs against Australia in Australia for the first time, while the hosts are playing only their second ODI at home since January 2019.

Teams:

Australia: Aaron Finch (capt), David Warner, Steven Smith, Marcus Stoinis, Marnus Labuschagne, Glenn Maxwell, Alex Carey, Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, Adam Zampa, Josh Hazlewood

India: Shikhar Dhawan, Mayank Agarwal, Virat Kohli (capt), Shreyas Iyer, KL Rahul, Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, Mohammed Shami, Yuzvendra Chahal, Jasprit Bumrah, Navdeep Saini

Umpires: Sam Nogajski (AUS) and Rod Tucker (AUS)

TV umpire: Paul Reiffel (AUS)

Match referee: David Boon (AUS)

Meanwhile, India suffered a blow Friday with fast bowler Ishant Sharma ruled out of their Test series against Australia, as skipper Virat Kohli blasted a lack of clarity over the fate of star opener Rohit Sharma.

Ishant has been struggling with a side strain picked up during the Indian Premier League, and while he has recovered officials said he was not match fit.

"While he's building up his workload in order to achieve Test match fitness, Ishant Sharma has been ruled out of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy," the Indian cricket board said in a statement.

Senior batsman Rohit hurt his hamstring last month and will have another assessment on December 11, six days before the opening day-night Test in Adelaide.

Complicating matters was his father falling ill in Mumbai, which delayed Rohit's arrival at India's National Cricket Academy to begin his rehab.

Kohli said the way the matter had been handled was "very confusing" and that both players should be in Australia to complete their recoveries.

"It definitely would have increased the chances of both of them playing Test matches," he said in video comments from his hotel room in Sydney ahead of the opening one-dayer against Australia on Friday.

Kohli, who has been undergoing a mandatory 14-day quarantine along with the rest of the India squad, said he was expecting Rohit to be on the plane to Australia with everyone else.

"We had no information whatsoever on the reason why he's not travelling with us," said the skipper, who will return home after the opening Test for the birth of his first child.

"And after that, the only other information officially we've received by mail is that he's in the NCA and he's been assessed and he'll be further assessed on December 11.

"So from the time that the selection meeting happened to the IPL finishing and now when this email came about his assessment in the NCA, there's been no information.

"There's been a lack of clarity and we've been playing the waiting game on this issue for a while now which is not ideal at all. So it's been very confusing and there's been a lot of uncertainty and a lack of clarity around the situation."

India play four Tests against Australia in Adelaide, Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane following their six-match limited overs series.