Saturday 6 June, 2020

Finch and Warner pummel India to seal 10-wicket thrashing

Australia openers Aaron Finch and David Warner.

Australia openers Aaron Finch and David Warner.

Aaron Finch and David Warner pummelled India with imperious unbeaten centuries to seal a crushing 10-wicket victory for Australia in the first match of the One-Day International (ODI) series at Wankhede Stadium.

India collapsed from 134-1 to 255 all out in Mumbai on Tuesday after Shikhar Dhawan (74) and KL Rahul (47) put on 121 for the second wicket.

Mitchell Starc took 3-56, while there were two wickets apiece for Pat Cummins (2-44) and Kane Richardson (2-43) in a superb performance in the field for the tourists.

The magnificent Finch (110 not out from 114 balls) and Warner (128 not out off 112) reached the victory target with 12.2 overs to spare, staging the highest opening stand in an ODI against India, as Marnus Labuschagne was not required to bat on debut.

Warner become the fourth fastest to 5,000 ODI runs – and the quickest Australian – in the process and has four centuries in his last eight international knocks in the 50-over format.

India, beaten by Australia in a series on home soil last year, also lost Rishabh Pant to concussion when he was struck on the helmet, Rahul taking the gloves in his absence in the first of three ODIs.

Dhawan got his timing going after a slow start, reaching his 50 in the 20th over with Rahul in good touch at the other end after Rohit Sharma was removed by Starc.

Spinners Adam Zampa and Ashton Agar did a good job of keeping the run-rate down in the middle overs, though, and the left-arm tweaker drew a false shot from Rahul for a much-needed breakthrough.

Cummins came back into the attack to strike a big blow by ending Dhawan's innings in the next over and Virat Kohli (16) was caught and bowled by Zampa immediately after hitting him for six.

Shreyas Iyer also failed to hang around before Ravindra Jadeja (25) was caught behind attempting to cut Richardson, and Pant (28) departed in painful fashion, an attempted pull off Cummins hitting his helmet and resulting in a catch for Ashton Turner. 

India added only 42 runs for the last five wickets and play was stopped due to a kite flying into the stadium before Warner and Finch blew Kohli's side away.

Warner successfully reviewed when he was given out caught behind hooking in the sixth over and needed only 40 balls for a half-century, with Finch raising his bat soon after.

Both openers smashed Kuldeep Yadav over the rope and continued to pierce the field with exquisite strokes on both sides of the wicket, Warner also overturning an lbw decision when he was struck on the pad by Jadeja.

Warner leapt in the air with his trademark celebration after majestically cutting Jasprit Bumrah for four off his 88th ball before Finch swept Jadeja to the boundary for a 15th ODI before stunned India were put out of their misery.

Get the latest local and international news straight to your mobile phone for free: