Australia defeated India in the deciding third and final ODI at MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai on Wednesday and clinched the series 2-1.

Batting first, Australia’s opening pair of Travis Head and Mitchell Marsh took the team to a flyer, putting pressure on Indian bowlers right from the word go. Head and Marsh formed a scintillating opening partnership of 68 runs in 10.5 overs.

India bounced back after Hardik Pandya dismissed Head (33 of 31) to draw the first blood. Hardik was on a roll as he soon got rid of Steve Smith for a 3-ball duck. Marsh continued tickling the scoreboard, but Hardik cleaned him up three runs short of 50.

Aussie wicketkeeper-batter Alex Carey chipped in with a valuable knock of 38 from 46 deliveries, hitting two fours and a six to help his side breach the 200-run mark. Carey looked set to contribute more, but an absolute ripper from Kuldeep Yadav ended his innings.

The Aussie tail then frustrated India and took the score to 269 before getting bundled out with one over to spare. Apart from Pandya, who returned with an impressive spell of 3/44 in his 10 overs, Kuldeep also shined with the ball, picking up three wickets and conceding 56 runs in his 10 overs.

In reply, India got off to a brilliant start, with captain Rohit Sharma (30) and Shubman Gill (37) adding 65 runs for the opening wicket. Australia came back and dismissed both openers to put pressure once again on the hosts. Then Virat Kohli and KL Rahul steadied the innings, with a partnership of 69 runs for the third wicket.

Kohli scored 54 runs off 72 deliveries, including 2 fours and a six, while Rahul made 32 runs off 50 deliveries. However, the required run rate kept climbing, and India struggled to maintain the momentum. Pandya’s 40 off 40 deliveries provided some hope, but Adam Zampa‘s impressive bowling performance of 4/45 ensured Australia emerged victorious.

Ashton Agar also contributed with the ball, taking two wickets for 41 runs. India’s middle and lower order failed to capitalize on their starts, and they were eventually bowled out for 248 in the 48th over, resulting in a 21-run victory for Australia.

India’s last five series defeats at home:

  • 2-1 vs Australia, 2023
  • 3-2 vs Australia, 2019
  • 3-2 vs South Africa, 2019
  • 2-1 vs Pakistan, 2012/13
  • 4-2 vs Australia, 2009

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