Explosive batting helps Aussies win ODI series

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Steve Smith is in the form of his life.

He scored his second consecutive ton as Australia beat India by 51 runs in the second ODI at the Sydney Cricket Ground on Sunday.

David Warner, Aaron Finch, Marnus Labuschagne and Glenn Maxwell also scored fifties as Australia posted 389/4 on the board after electing to bat.

Australia made one change to their side as Moises Henriques replaced an injured Marcus Stoinis.

The Warner-Finch duo took off from where they had left in the first game as the two completed a fifty-run stand in the eighth over.

Three overs later, Warner brought up his second successive fifty as Australia moved past 70.

Warner and Finch completed their second hundred-run stand in a row in the 16th over.

Shami creates an opening

India were looking for a breakthrough and Mohammad Shami provided them with one as he dismissed Finch for 60 in the 23rd over. Three overs later, Shreyas Iyer’s fielding brilliance gave India their second wicket as his direct hit from deep caught David Warner short of his crease.

Smith was then joined by Labuschagne in the middle and the two built onto the solid platform provided by Warner and Finch.

Smith moved past fifty in the 34th over and the pair continued to keep the scorecard ticking to complete a hundred-run stand before Smith hit three fours to take Australia past 270 after 40 overs.

In the next over, Smith completed his second ton of the series before being dismissed for 104 by Hardik Pandya in the 42nd over.

The Labuschagne-Maxwell duo drove Australia past the 350-run mark in the 47th over. While Labuschagne got out in the penultimate over following his 80-run stand with Maxwell, the latter completed his fifty and remained not out on 63 off 29 balls to take Australia to 389/4.

India lose early wickets after brisk start

Needing 390 runs to win, India needed a solid start in the chase and Shikhar Dhawan and Mayank Agarwal provided the team with one. The pair put up a 58-run stand but departed in quick succession.

While Josh Hazlewood dismissed Dhawan for 30 in the eighth over, Pat Cummins had Agarwal caught behind the wickets in the ninth over.

Skipper Virat Kohli and Shreyas Iyer did a fine rebuilding job and kept the team in the hunt. The two kept the scorecard ticking, playing some attractive strokes, and took India past 150 in the 23rd over. The same over also saw Kohli bringing in up 59th ODI fifty.

However, the pair’s 92-run stand was broken as Smith took a stunning catch off Moises Henriques’ bowling to dismiss Iyer.

Kohli was then joined by KL Rahul in the middle. They completed a fifty-run stand in the 32nd over and in that process, took India past the 200-run mark.

However, Australia broke the partnership as Hazlewood got Kohli out for 89 after Henriques took a fine catch at mid-wicket.

While Rahul and Hardik Pandya added 63 runs together, Adam Zampa got Rahul out after the Indian wicketkeeper-batsman scored a well-compiled 76.

Although Ravindra Jadeja creamed a couple of sixes, he and Hardik got out in the 47th over before Australia registered a 51-run win to take an unassailable lead in the three-match ODI series.

Brief Scores: Australia 389/4 (Steve Smith 104, David Warner 83; Hardik Pandya 1/24) beat India 338/9 (Virat Kohli 89, KL Rahul 76; Pat Cummins 3/67) by 51 runs