Twitter Reactions: Shikhar Dhawan, Kohli, Pandya and Rohit pummel Australia as India post 352 at The Oval

Twitter Reactions: Shikhar Dhawan, Kohli, Pandya and Rohit pummel Australia as India post 352 at The Oval

The top order's efforts were perfectly complimented by Hardik Pandya and Dhoni who finished well as India scored 132 runs in last 13 overs.

Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli. (Photo by Henry Browne/Getty Images)

Wow! Come the big match, India’s superstar batsmen come to the party. It was a huge clash against Australia and the Men in Blue stepped up to the task smashing runs at will batting first. While Shikhar Dhawan slammed a fantastic century, Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli supported him well to score timely half-centuries. The finishers, Hardik Pandya and MS Dhoni, also came to the fore by scoring 48 (off 27 balls) and 27 (off 14 balls) respectively as India finished strongly on 352 runs for the loss of five after 50 overs.

After opting to bat first, India needed to see of the new ball spell from Mitchell Starc and Pat Cummins and that is exactly what the openers did. Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan took their time initially and scored at four runs an over for the first 10 overs. Soon, the latter started to attack the bowlers. Dhawan targetted Australia’s weak-link in their pace attack, Nathan Coulter-Nile.

He got hit on his thumb off the Cummins’ bouncer and looked uncomfortable for some time. But after the first drinks break, the southpaw regained his sublime touch and the runs started to flow easily. Dhawan’s assault allowed Rohit to get in as well as the duo added 127 runs in less than 23 overs. India’s vice-captain got out soon after reaching his half-century but that only brought Virat Kohli to the middle.

Meanwhile, Shikhar Dhawan made sure that the run-scoring didn’t come down when his skipper found it tough to get going from the word go. The left-hander also got to his 17th ODI century in the process which was also his third three-figure score at The Oval in the format. After playing some scintillating strokes post his ton, Dhawan got out on 117. But he had set the platform for the rest of the batsmen to come and launch the attack on the opposition.

Pandya’s promotion works wonders for India

Just like England did the other day, India promoted their enforcer with the bat Hardik Pandya at four with only 13 overs to go. At 220/2, they had a chance to post a huge total on the board and Pandya performed his job to perfection. He pummeled the likes of Cummins and Zampa picking around 15-16 runs in the over. He raced to 48 runs off just 27 balls before getting out in the 46th over.

Meanwhile, Kohli also unfurled some of the fine textbook shots and matched the other batsmen in run-scoring. Also, smartly, with Pandya coming out to bat, he just rotated the strike to let Pandya take on the bowlers. However, there was no respite for the Australian bowlers despite breaking the partnership with MS Dhoni coming out to bat. He was welcomed with a huge roar by the jam-packed stadium and the veteran didn’t disappoint.

Even as Kohli got going, Dhoni scored some quick runs and the best of the lot was a huge six off Mitchell Starc in the 49th over of the innings. Starc delivered a 143 kph delivery angling into the batsman but erred in length only for Dhoni to hit it for a massive six over deep square leg. Runs kept coming in the death overs as India ended on 352 runs after 50 overs.

Here’s how Twitter reacted: