Australia defeated India by 12 runs in the third T20I at Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) on Tuesday to avoid the clean sweep.
Chasing the challenging target of 187, India had a terrible start as KL Rahul was sent back to the dugout by Glenn Maxwell on the second ball of India’s innings.
After the early dismissal, captain Virat Kohli and Shikhar Dhawan steadied the ship by adding a crucial stand of 74 runs for the second wicket. The partnership was broken by leg spinner Mitchell Swepson, who bowled brilliantly throughout the match.
Swepson removed Dhawan for 28, followed by two more dismissals in the form of Sanju Samson (10) and Shreyas Iyer (0).
Despite wickets falling at one end, Indian skipper Kohli continued his battle and reached another half-century in T20I cricket. The Indian skipper kept on scoring runs but did not get assistance from any other player.
Kohli made 85 runs off 61 balls while India could only manage to reach 174/7, losing the contest by 12 runs.
Half-centuries from Wade and Maxwell pushed Australia to 186/5
Earlier, Matthew Wade and Glenn Maxwell shined for the hosts and helped their team to post 186/5 in 20 overs. Wade continued from where he left in the second T20I. The wicketkeeper-batsman scored 80 off 53 balls laced up with seven fours and two sixes.
Maxwell too took Indian bowlers to the cleaners. The Victorian smashed 54 from 36 deliveries to push Australia to beyond the mark of 180.
For India, Washington Sundar picked up two wickets for 34 in his quota of 4 overs. Apart from Sundar, T Natarajan and Shardul Thakur also claimed one scalp each.
Here is how Twitter reacted:
A bit of de Villiers to Virat today? Moving a lot in his crease…. Playing different shots…
— Harsha Bhogle (@bhogleharsha) December 8, 2020
— BCCI (@BCCI) December 8, 2020
Australian umpires have been a little too lenient with the wides in the second innings….am I the only one who thinks that way? 🤷♂️🧐 #AusvInd
— Aakash Chopra (@cricketaakash) December 8, 2020
— cricket.com.au (@cricketcomau) December 8, 2020
Despite the loss, India should be very proud of the way they have been playing T20 cricket, especially overseas. After ODI series loss, this short format victory should help during Test series. #AUSvIND
— R P Singh रुद्र प्रताप सिंह (@rpsingh) December 8, 2020
— Pragyan Ojha (@pragyanojha) December 8, 2020
— Jimmy Neesham (@JimmyNeesh) December 8, 2020
Virat Kohli 85 off 61 balls. Normally when batsmen of his stature stay on the wicket for 61 balls, they get to 100. Credit to Swepson and Zampa for containing him. The leggies bowled 24 balls to him and conceded only 29 runs. #AusvInd
— Mazher Arshad (@MazherArshad) December 8, 2020
The second Kohli falls there’s a mass crowd exodus from the SCG. #AUSvIND
— Chloe-Amanda Bailey (@ChloeAmandaB) December 8, 2020
— Bharat Sundaresan (@beastieboy07) December 8, 2020
Nattu deserved the man of the series not pandya
Bad choice #AUSvIND
— Ajay chawla (@ajaychawla_) December 8, 2020
— sarcasm__27 (@rahuljoshi144) December 8, 2020
— ICC (@ICC) December 8, 2020