Usman Khawaja (100) struck his second century in three ODIs as Australia rode to 272-9. Peter Handscomb also followed his hundred in Mohali with 52 off 60 balls, as the duo put on 99 runs for the second wicket.
In reply, Rohit Sharma top-scored with 56 but India lost Shikhar Dhawan (12) and Virat Kohli (20) cheaply, which cost them the game. From 132-6 at one stage, Kedar Jadhav (44) and Bhuvneshwar Kumar (46) put on 91 runs for the seventh wicket but it wasn’t enough to salvage the situation.
Opting to bat, Australia got off to another good start as Khawaja and Aaron Finch (27) put on 76 runs for the opening stand.
Ravindra Jadeja (2-45) was the pick of India’s bowlers, and provided the breakthrough. But Khawaja and Handscomb denied the hosts any further opportunities.
Handscomb reached his fourth ODI half-century off 55 balls, while Khawaja scored his second ODI hundred off 102 balls. Overall, he hit 10 fours and two sixes as India’s changed bowling attack failed to impress.
Australia suffered a mini-collapse, though, and lost three wickets for seven runs in the space of 21 balls. Khawaja was out caught off Bhuvneshwar Kumar (3-48). Then Jadeja got rid of Glenn Maxwell (1) and Mohammed Shami dismissed Handscomb.
Marcus Stoinis (20), Ashton Turner (20) and Jhye Richardson (29) made important lower-order contributions to push Australia to a competitive total, which proved enough in the absence of dew.
Following this painful defeat, fans want Ajinkya Rahane to be drafted back in the team for the World Cup in England and Wales.
Cricket fanatics feel the current Indian squad is not competitive enough to win the World Cup title and by drafting Ajinkya Rahane in the team, Virat Kohli can plug loopholes.
Seeing this series @ajinkyarahane88 should be in team.. missed quality, maturedness, technique in this team. His presence in team brings solidity?? my no.4 for world cup.#INDvAUS
— adithya sunny (@adithya5714) March 13, 2019
@BCCI Ajinkya rahane should be in the team. Dinesh karthik also should be in the team. Please, don’t mess with the team selection for the world cup.@imVkohli
— Ananda kumar (ஆனந்த குமார்) (@87Eeeanand) March 14, 2019
If we are done experimenting with team selection, then can we get back to business and give Ajinkya Rahane a chance? Dont we say class is permanent and form is temporary or this applies only to players like Ambathi Rayudu??
— hitesh (@hitesh_439) March 14, 2019
I still bet on @ajinkyarahane88 for the no. 4 slot because of the England’s condition. His record is too good in those pitches. We need experience guys.
— Manjunath Hiregange (@mangaladeepa) March 14, 2019
#asksportstak .. Why bcci or team managment forget #AjinkyaRahane while this experiment or selection of top 15 for world cup ??? #vikrantgupta
— Neeraj (@Neeraj83904977) March 13, 2019
I just wonder what went so wrong with our selectors that convinced them to not even discuss Ajinkya Rahane for #indvaus #CWC19
With these figures he definitely makes a strong case!
And about the mere chances he got i think his position has been shuffled like no other player! pic.twitter.com/SsgbQsQMwy
— Girish Jagdale (@soulfulgiri) March 13, 2019