Finch-Warner flay Indian bowling as Australia score 348/8

Finch-Warner flay Indian bowling as Australia score 348/8

Finch-Warner flay Indian bowling as Australia score 348/8
Australia produced yet another scintillating batting performance led by a superb century by Aaron Finch as the home team posted 348 for eight in the fourth One-day International against India here today.

Finch along with David Warner (93) also put on a solid 187-run opening stand, while skipper Steven Smith (51) contributed with a quickfire half-century and Glenn Maxwell (41) played a cameo towards the end of the innings at the Manuka Oval.

Finch's run-a-ball 107, studded with nine fours and two sixes, was his seventh ODI hundred, while Warner (93, 92b, 12X4, 1X6) scored his 13th ODI fifty as they flayed the Indian bowling to all parts of the ground.

This was after Australian won the toss and elected to bat first on a cloudy and windy morning.

The hosts made two changes to their side with Warner returning from paternity leave and Nathan Lyon included in the side in place of Scott Boland.

India made just the one change with Bhuvneshwar Kumar coming in the place of Barinder Sran. Surprisingly, Ravichandran Ashwin did not make the cut again.

Finch and Warner started off proceedings against Umesh Yadav (3/67) and Kumar (0/69). The UP medium pacer Kumar shred the new ball on his return to the eleven after the Perth ODI. but looked rusty from the very beginning. While Yadav was again off the mark as the Australian openers got off to a rousing start.

Warner, in particular, looked like he had never been away and smacked three fours in the fourth over bowled by Kumar and then handed out the same treatment to Yadav an over later.

The 50-mark came up for the duo in the 7th over, off just 38 balls, inclusive of nine boundaries.

Ishant Sharma (4/77) was introduced into the attack in the 6th over, and he just about managed to slow down their scoring. Gurkeerat Mann (0/24) was also brought on early in the 12th over, but the two batsmen couldn't be stopped.

Warner reached his fifty off just 46 balls, in the 14th over, while Finch reached that mark off 61 balls in the 23rd over.

Ravindra Jadeja (0/51) came on to bowl in the 17th over and was taken for 15 runs in his very first over, signalling an off day for the left-arm spinner.

The Australian scoring continued to race as the 100-mark came up in the 17th over, with Rishi Dhawan (0/53) impressing in the middle overs.  

Ajinkya Rahane split his hand webbing in the 20th over, whilst fielding, and left the field to receive medical care. He didn't return for the remainder of the innings, and with four stitches to his right hand, will bat in the run-chase if deemed necessary.

He was the second casualty of the day with umpire Richard Kettleborough getting hit in the 6th over earlier on, off a Finch drive on his right leg, and leaving the field for medical care.

Paul Wilson then joined John Ward (who wore a helmet thereafter) on the field, while Sam Nogajski took over as the third umpire.

Meanwhile, Warner-Finch breached the 150-mark in the 26th over, and were looking set to continue plundering runs. But Ishant broke the partnership in the 30th over, an inside edge onto his stumps dismissing him in the 90s.

Mitchell Marsh (33 runs, 42 balls, 3 fours) was promoted up the order, but he didn't make the requisite impact at number three.

At the other end, Finch reached his century off 97 balls in the 34th over, but was out soon after, caught by Ishant off Umesh, as the run-rate seemed to be slowing down.

Australia had reached 237/2 in the 40th over, and thereafter stepped on the accelerator as Smith (51 runs, 29 balls, 4 fours, 3 sixes) arrived at the crease. He smacked a quickfire ninth ODI fifty, off only 27 balls, as the innings went into high gear.

A flurry of wickets fell thereafter, including Marsh and Smith gone in the 45th and 46th overs, respectively, but it wasn't enough to slow down their march.

Even George Bailey (10) and James Faulkner (7) couldn't make much of an impact, but then Glenn Maxwell (41, 20b, 6X4, 1X6) provided a final flourish, as the hosts stole 111 runs in the last 10 overs.  

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