Adam Zampa ended the three-match ODI series against India as the highest wicket-taker as Australia started the tour with a 2-1 series win over the Men in Blue. India’s return to international cricket didn’t pan out the way they would have expected. They were outplayed by a better and balanced Australian team in the first two One Day Internationals and managed to avoid the whitewash in the third and final match of the series at Canberra.
We witnessed a run-fest with a total of 2000 runs being scored over the three matches with an average score of 333. That indicates the nature of the surfaces which were provided at the two venues; Sydney and Canberra. However, the quality bowlers did manage to keep things in check and provide major breakthroughs at crucial points in the game. Here are the top performers from the ODI series.
Matches: 3 | Wickets: 7 | Average: 23.00 | Best: 4/54
The wily leg-spinner, Adam Zampa finished the series as the highest wicket-taker. He used the dimensions of the grounds to his advantage and provided the much-needed wickets whenever Aaron Finch brought him on. Zampa proved the dominant bowling force along with Josh Hazlewood in the first ODI to ensure that Australia started the series with a win. In the opening two matches, Zampa came on to bowl with the Indian top-order back in the pavilion and with massive targets already on the board. The life of the spinner instantly becomes easier in such situations.
Matches: 3 | Runs: 249 | Average: 83.00 | Strike Rate: 90.54 | Highest: 114
Captain Finch led from the front with the bat and with some shrewd bowling changes in the three-match ODI series. He made sure that Australia didn’t lose early wickets and put the Indian bowling line-up under pressure from ball one. With a century and two half-centuries, Finch was rock solid for his team and helped them post massive totals on the board.
Matches: 3 | Wickets: 6 | Average: 30.00 | Best: 3/55
Three out of the six wickets were of the big fish, the Indian captain Virat Kohli. Josh Hazlewood managed to get the better of Kohli in all three matches and that’s probably the biggest reason why Australia managed to win the series 2-1. Hazlewood stuck to his back of length Test match line and the bounce he managed to extract on the SCG pitch troubled the Indian batsmen. For Australia’s perspective, they’d hope that it’s just the beginning of what is to be followed in the upcoming Test series.
Matches: 3 | Runs: 210 | Average: 105.00 | Strike Rate: 114.75 | Highest: 92*
After grabbing the headlines with Team Mumbai in the Indian T20 League, Hardik came into this tour as a specialist batsman. He is trying to remodel his bowling action after suffering multiple back issues and there were talks about his spot in the team purely as a batsman. He put all the talks behind him and went on to become India’s best batsman in the series. He’d be gutted that he didn’t manage to score his first century in ODI cricket but it isn’t too far for the man from Baroda. He also managed to give his captain three overs in the second ODI and got the prized scalp of Steven Smith.
Matches: 3 | Runs: 167 | Average: 83.50 | Strike Rate: 194.18 | Highest: 63*
After a horrendous Indian T20 League, Glenn Maxwell had a point to prove in this series. In all the 14 matches he played in the UAE, he didn’t manage to strike a single six for team Punjab but here he was smashing sixes for breakfast, lunch and dinner. This was his highest-ever strike rate in an international series and helped his team reach totals like 373 and 389 in the first and second ODIs, respectively.
Matches: 3 | Runs: 216 | Average: 72.00 | Strike Rate: 148.96 | Highest: 105
It seems like whenever India is around, Steven Smith gets back to his best form. He was the only man to score two centuries in this series and unusually failed in the third ODI. We get a feeling that the Indian bowling will get to see a lot of Steven Smith this Australian summer. Rather than the runs scored, his strike rate of almost 150 was the most remarkable thing to witness.
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