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Twitter Reactions: Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli guide India to another come from behind series victory

Steve Smith's majestic ton (131), unfortunately, went in vain.

Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli
Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli. (Photo Source: Twitter)

India have sealed the three-match ODI series against Australia with a clinical win in the final game by seven wickets in Bengaluru. Virat Kohli and Rohit Sharma led the way for the home side in the 287-run chase after Steve Smith also got to the three-figure earlier in the day. This completes yet another come from behind series win for the Men in Blue as India end the home season with a win.

India suffered a severe blow even before the chase started as Shikhar Dhawan was ruled out of the game due to the shoulder injury he sustained while fielding. But that didn’t deter Rohit and KL Rahul’s confidence as the duo started strongly. They added 69 runs for the opening wicket before the latter was sent back by Ashton Agar courtesy a brilliant review.

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But Virat Kohli’s arrival only made things tough for the tourists. Though the period from over 11 to 20 was excellent for Australia as they kept the batsmen quiet and piled on the pressure with dot balls. The spinners, Agar and Adam Zampa, bowled exceptionally well. But both the Indian batters made sure that they didn’t give away their wicket and reaped rewards for it later.

Surprisingly, Australia’s ace bowlers Mitchell Starc and Pat Cummins had an off day as both Rohit and Virat churned out easy runs off their bowling. Rohit was simply brilliant on the day as he dished out some of the best elegant strokes from his book. With India’s score just over 150, the 32-year-old got to his 29th ODI century, his 8th ton in the format against the Aussies.

The second-wicket partnership of 137 runs in 24.1 overs kept India ahead in the game always. Rohit seemed to be determined on seeing India through but Adam Zampa got the better of him. Virat Kohli, at the other end, played second fiddle when his partner was going berserk and did well scoring 89 runs in the chase.

Shreyas Iyer, after failing twice, came up with a much better effort batting at four and remained unbeaten in the chase scoring 44 runs along with Manish Pandey (8*) as India finished the game in the 48th over to win the series 2-1.

Steve Smith’s 9th ODI century propels Australia to 286

Australia won the toss and opted to bat after failing to chase down 341 in Rajkot. But they didn’t get off to a good start with Mohammed Shami nipping out David Warner. However, Aaron Finch and Steve Smith continued churning out runs in the powerplay. The duo was looking dangerous only for a weird mix-up between them to break the partnership.

In the ninth over of the innings, Smith gently tapped the good length ball to the off-side and took a couple of steps forward only to call ‘no’ to his partner. However, Finch was up and running and looking at him, even Smith took a couple of steps forward and then dived back into his crease.

In the meantime, Finch was sold down the river had to run back to the non-striker’s end. But it was too late until then as Shami collected the throw and affected the run-out. But the dismissal brought no respite to the hosts. Marnus Labuschagne came out to bat and like the previous game, he joined hands with Smith to stitch 127 runs for the third wicket stand.

At 173/2 in the 32nd over, things were looking ominous for India. But once again, Labuschagne’s wicket proved to be the turning wicket. Ravindra Jadeja snaffled him thanks to an excellent catch from Virat Kohli. Australia’s move to send Mitchell Starc at five didn’t work and even though Alex Carey scored some quick runs, the run-scoring stayed below six.

Meanwhile, Steve Smith was playing a sublime innings at the other end and despite the fall of wickets, kept going shepherding his team with precision. He also scored his ninth ODI ton in the process. But just when he was threatening to take Australia’s total past 300, Smith got out in the 48th over on 131 with 14 fours and a six. The visitors could only add 13 runs in the next 17 deliveries to end on 286/9 after 50 overs.

But the score didn’t prove to be enough thanks to some brilliant batting from Rohit Sharma and Kohli as India cantered to victory with seven wickets in hand.

Here’s how Twitter reacted:

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