5th ODI: Brilliant Pandey sees India through

Cricket Fifth ODI : Visitors notch 6-wicket win but Aussies top 4-1

5th ODI: Brilliant Pandey sees India through

Manish Pandey struck a brilliant maiden one-day century in a high-scoring thriller to secure India a pride-salvaging six-wicket victory against Australia in the fifth and final ODI here on Saturday.

Staring at a series whitewash after four defeats, India rode on Pandey's scintillating 104 off 81 balls to chase down a 331-run target with two balls to spare.

Centuries from David Warner (122) and Mitchell Marsh (102) helped Australia post 330 for 7 but Pandey's knock in his only fourth one-dayer clinched the contest for India.

India needed a strong start from their openers to stay on course to chase down such a big total and the visitors got just that from Shikhar Dhawan (78) and Rohit Sharma (99). Dhawan posted his third successive 50-plus score and Rohit fell agonisingly short of his third century in the series as they raised 123 runs in 18.2 overs.

John Hastings dismissed Dhawan and Virat Kohli (eight) in quick succession to check India's progress and Rohit’s dismissal left India needing exactly 100 runs from 91 balls to win the contest.

With the required run-rate skyrocketing and skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni (34) struggling to time the ball at the other end, Pandey's crisp hitting left India needing 13 runs off the last over from Marsh.

Marsh began with a wide and had his next hit out of the ground by Dhoni but the Indian captain fell immediately to inject fresh drama in the contest. Pandey, however, was unfazed and he hit the next ball for a boundary to first complete his century and then scurried for two for the winning run. Pandey, hit eight fours and a six in his 81-ball knock.
Earlier, the Indian chase was going on well when Shaun Marsh plucked out a stunning diving catch at deep point dismissing Dhawan off Hastings (3-61) in the 19th over,

Two overs later, it became a double blow as Hastings had Virat Kohli (8) caught behind for his first single digit score in the series. It was then Rohit and Pandey were united, and they batted calmly, cutting down risks while making sure that the run-rate didn’t get out of hand. The youngster, in particular, wasn’t afraid to play his shots and lit up the SCG with an array of fours. At the other end, Rohit had reached his 28th ODI half-century off 50 balls in the 22nd over. In the next over, he was dropped by Steve Smith  off Hastings even as India went past the 150-mark in the 24th over.

Their 50-partnership came run-a-ball and India went past the 200-mark in the 31st over. In doing so, Rohit crossed the 400-mark personally in this series, as also 5000 ODI runs, and looked set for his third hundred in five games when Shaun Marsh dropped a sitter off Nathan Lyon (0-58) in the 33rd over. He was on 92 then, but Hastings finally got his man two overs later as a faint edge was accepted calmly by keeper Matthew Wade.

Pandey reached his 50 off 38 balls in the 37th over, and looked primed for the chase. Dhoni, who was struggling, was dropped in the 42nd over by Lyon off Scott Boland (0-58) as the equation became tight. But the Indian captain redeemed his innings with a timely six in the final over and then Pandey finished it off in style.

Earlier, Warner struck his fifth ODI century and Marsh notched up his first to set up yet another runfest in a series that has provided a tally of 3,159 runs.  India's much-maligned bowlers did well to reduce Australia to 117-4 in the 22nd over before Warner and Marsh combined to add 118 runs in 17.3 overs.

score board

AUSTRALIA
Finch lbw Ishant    6
Warner c Jadeja b Ishant    122
Smith c Rohit b Bumrah    28
Bailey c Ishant b Rishi    6
Shaun (run out)    7
Mitchell (not out)    102
Wade c Dhoni b Yadav    36
Faulkner b Bumrah    1
Hastings (not out)    2
Extras (B-4, LB-7, W-8, NB-1)    20
Total (for 7 wkts, 50 overs)    330
Fall of wickets: 1-6, 2-64, 3-78, 4-117, 5-235, 6-320, 7-323.
Bowling: Ishant 10-0-60-2, Yadav 8-0-82-1, Bumrah 10-0-40-2, Rishi 10-0-74-1, Jadeja 10-0-46-0, Gurkeerat 2-0-17-0.
India
Rohit c Wade b Hastings    99
Shikhar c Shaun b Hastings    78
Kohli c Wade b Hastings    8
Pandey (not out)    104
Dhoni c Warner b Mitchell    34
Gurkeerat (not out)    0
Extras: (LB-3, W-5)    8
Total: (4 wickets in 49.4 overs)    331
Fall of wickets: 1-123, 2-134, 3-231, 4-325.
Bowling: Hastings 10-1-61-3, Boland 10-0-58-0, Mitchell 9.4-0-77-1, Faulkner 10-0-54-0, Lyon 8-0-58-0, Smith 2-0-20-0.

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