SPIRITED COMEBACK BY AUSTRALIA BUT NOT ENOUGH FOR A WIN.

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Australia bagged wins in the opening two ODI’s and India respond well to bag the 3rd and final ODI to save a whitewash. Australia take the ODI series 2-1 but it’s a special trophy they’re playing for, it’s the ‘India/Australia women’s series trophy’ that Australia currently lead 4-2 heading into the one-off test match, day-night test.

Australia won their 3rd consecutive toss and this time elect to bat, hosts with 3 changes as they rope in Racheal Haynes, Annabel Sutherland and Stella Campbell for Georgia Wareham, Hannah Darlington and Darcie Brown; visitors with just a change, Sneh Rana’s in for Poonam Yadav.

Openers, Racheal Haynes and Alyssa Healy set early tone for Australia with a decent start, tidy bowling by Indians saw them have a reward as Jhulan Goswami in a great spell striked the wicket of Racheal Haynes on 13, Meg Lanning was next in and walked back for a 4 ball duck and it was Jhulan Goswami in the same over with another prize wicket. Ellyse Perry joined a set Healy and the duo had a defensive partnership that saw curtains with an unlucky dismissal as Healy walked back for a fine 35. Beth Mooney joined a defensive Perry who was next dismissed on 26(47) a soft dismissal, with 87 on board Australia were 4 down. Ashleigh Gardner joined Beth Mooney and the duo got Australia past the 100 mark in the 27th over and then guided Australia past the 150 mark in the 36th over, defensive start but the pair got Australia back in the contest as they kept rotating strike and scored the odd boundary, few big overs and Australia looked to accelerate after they got past the 150 mark that saw Gardner get to her half century with a six and couple of balls later Mooney too got to her half century before she was dismissed by Rajeshwari Gayakwad on 52; Rajeshwari with a much wanted breakthrough wicket for India as the brilliant partnership of 98 saw curtains with the wicket of Mooney. Tahila McGrath joined a set Gardner who with a six got Australia past the 200 mark but was next to depart after giving Australia a couple more good overs; Gardner walked back for an excellent 67(62) and it was Pooja Vastrakar with the wicket of the set batter; got the 39 run partnership to a close, was an accelerated one. Nicola Carey was next in with McGrath and continued to accelerate at a good pace as Australia put up another 36 run partnership that saw curtains with the wicket of an attacking McGrath on 47(32) and it again was Pooja Vastrakar with a wicket in the last delivery of the penultimate over, was a brilliant knock by McGrath, missed out on a deserving 50. Annabel looking to push Australia’s total was handed a golden duck, Sophie Molineux scored a run before she was ran out, Carey remained unbeaten on 12(15) and Australia post a competitive 264 on board in their 50.

Experienced Ashleigh Gardner got Australia back in the contest and striked healthy to help Australia post a winning total, excellent 67(62).

India’s bowling again didn’t look effective enough as Australia in their final 10 scored 79 and India again failed to capitalise on a good start and let momentum slip Australia’s way. India were athletic on field for nearly 35 before they dropped catches and leaked runs but lifted themselves well in the last 2. Jhulan Goswami topped the wickets chart with 3 in her 10 at an economy of 3.7, Pooja was brilliant with 3 wickets to her name at economy just over 5, Sneh Rana too had a wicket to her name. Rajeshwari Gayakwad bowled well but wasn’t rewarded with a wicket, Meghna Singh and Deepti Sharma too were wicketless and a bit expensive.

Veteran Jhulan Goswami bagged 3 wickets with economy of 3.7 in her 10, in process also reached to 600* wickets mark across all formats.

India in reply see a good start as openers, Smriti Mandhana and Shafali Verma got India past the 50 mark in the 9th over before Gardner striked the wicket of Mandhana on 22(25) and the 59 run opening stand saw curtains. Yastika Bhatia joined a set Shafali and put up a good partnership that guided India past the 100 mark in the 19th over; India were past the 150 mark in the 27th over and in the same over the Indian duo of Shafali and Yastika got to their individual 50’s, excellence from the young Indian duo. India’s 101 run partnership saw curtains with the wicket of physically discomforted Shafali Verma on 56(91) and it was Sophie Molineux with the breakthrough wicket. Richa Ghosh was promoted up the order but a wicket gets two as Australia striked Richa Ghosh on duck. Mithali Raj made her way out and joined a set Yastika Bhatia who was next to depart on 64, Stella Campbell had her maiden ODI wicket and it was Strano with an absolute brilliant take diving in the deep. Pooja was next in and out early, 4 to her name. Deepti Sharma was next in and guided India past the 200 mark, Mithali Raj was next to fall on 16, Annabel Sutherland with the key wicket and had two in real quick succession. Sneh Rana joined a set Deepti Sharma and the duo put up a good 33 run partnership at a good pace that pushed Australia on backfoot but with Deepti’s wicket on 31 Tahila gave Australia a chance, excellent cameo by Deepti. Jhulan Goswami joined a set Rana and got India past the 250 mark. Sneh Rana after a drop catch took her chances, riding on her luck gave the required acceleration with a big over before she departed leaving India on the crust of victory, excellent cameo by Sneh Rana at a good strike rate, 30(27). India needed 4 of the final 6 and Jhulan with 3 balls to spare danced down the track and rocketed one down the ground for a boundary and that was the win, hasn’t come comfortably despite being in a good position but India will take it, India won by 2 wickets with 3 balls to spare.

All-rounders special saw India bag a win, but it was Yastika Bhatia show in the middle overs with an excellent knock of 64(69), intentful.

Australia again weren’t disciplined with the ball early on, Aussie bowlers have gone expensive early and have failed to adjust bowling to left and right duo, 34 extras by the Aussie bowlers and now losing a close games they’ll have a relook. Sophie Molineux and Stella Campbell had a wicket each to their name, Annabel Sutherland was the best on display for Australia as she bagged 3. A wicket reach to Tahila McGrath, Ash Gardner and Nicola Carey but economy slightly on the expensive side. Ellyse Perry again didn’t find her bowling rhythm and leaked runs.

Annabel Sutherland shined on return, picked up 3 wickets with economy of 4.3 in her 7.

Australia see their win streak of 26 ODI’s end, wouldn’t be much concerned about the streak but will be disappointed with their bowling effort and their batting intent, Australia kept picking wickets and were knocking back but few lucky chances went India’s way and at the end held their nerve to finish, credit to India for their commitment. Australia’s spirited comeback was excellent but at the end wasn’t enough as India’s commitment ensured they draw curtains to Australia’s win streak of 26 ODI’s and escape a whitewash.

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