Australia vs India
End of innings
Well, that was emphatic. After the earlier match between Pakistan and South Africa, we all thought India's 140 was around par and that their spinners would trouble Australia. That really wasn't the case. There was really nothing to challenge Warner and Watson, who must be easily the best opening pair in Twenty20 cricket. I do hope you've enjoyed my commentary today, and please join us again for tomorrow's Group One games between England and New Zealand, and Sri Lanka and West Indies. Goodbye!
Over 14.5 - Aus 141/1 (Warner 63, Maxwell 4)
Ashwin administers the last rites, Maxwell working him around for a couple before driving the winning runs through cover.
Over 14 - Aus 138/1 (Warner 63, Maxwell 1)
WICKET! Yuvraj offers Warner a gentle full toss, which the left-hander gleefully thumps over wide long on for his third six. The spinner then lobs up a long hop at Watson, but this time he gets a wicket as the right-hander cracks it straight to sub-fielder Tiwary at short extra cover. That doesn't worry Warner, of course, and he takes Australia to within one hit of the win with a scything slog-sweep to midwicket.
Over 13 - Aus 124/0 (Watson 72, Warner 50)
Warner eventually follows Watson to fifty, bringing up his own milestone from 37 balls with a drive to long-off. With Rohit Sharma bowling, Watson takes the opportunity to hurry Australia's win along with a well-timed flick through midwicket. Australia are going to take a hugely positive net run rate away from this.
Over 12 - Aus 112/0 (Watson 64, Warner 46)
Warner is dropped by Dhoni! Yuvraj got one to rush straight on, and the ball took a thin edge. Dhoni couldn't hold onto the chance, and Warner gets another life. It probably wouldn't have made any difference to the outcome of this match anyway, but that'll simply deflate the Indians further. To his credit, Yuvraj manages to keep the batsmen to just two from the over.
Over 11 - Aus 110/0 (Watson 63, Warner 45)
A desperate MS Dhoni turns to Kohli's unheralded medium pace, and Watson responds with a gunbarrel-straight six down the ground. That's his seventh of the innings! Australia need under four an over to win from here, and India are raising the white flag.
Over 10 - Aus 100/0 (Watson 53, Warner 45)
Oh my, these Australian openers are on the rampage! Watson has come from behind to beat Warner to fifty, swinging two gentle short deliveries from Pathan into the stands on the leg side. Huge. He then reaches the mark with an angled glance past the short fine leg fielder, and brings up the Australian 100 to end the over. This won't take much longer.
Over 9 - Aus 81/0 (Warner 45, Watson 34)
Not to be outdone, Warner has a go at Harbhajan and nails two violent slog sweeps into the leg side. Carnage. India have wilted completely, but they will know that if these two are separated then Australia's brittle middle order will be exposed.
Over 8 - Aus 67/0 (Watson 33, Warner 32)
Well, the Indian spinners are leaking runs here. Chawla's first over is bookended by two massive Watson sixes - a long-hop (yes, another one!) punted over midwicket, and a floater slammed down the ground - and Australia are flying now. These conditions were meant to favour India's bowling attack, but they're coming unstuck. To whom can Dhoni now turn?
Over 7 - Aus 53/0 (Warner 31, Watson 20)
Dhoni brings Harbhajan on but he, too, bowls much too short and is cracked through midwicket by Warner, on the pull. He darts them in flat and fast, not really looking for turn, and does well to keep the openers to just six from the over.
Over 6 - Aus 47/0 (Warner 26, Watson 19)
Warner is very lucky indeed to survive an adjacent lbw shout by Zaheer, who is kept on for a third over by Dhoni. The ball dipped in to his pads, and in fact replays suggest he should've been given. Perhaps there was some doubt in Umpire Kettleborough's mind as to whether that would've scooted down the leg side. The Australian punishes the bowler with two boundaries through cover point, but Zaheer isn't done yet and ends the over with another big lbw appeal against Watson. This time the not-out call is the correct one, as it pitched outside leg.
Over 5 - Aus 38/0 (Watson 19, Warner 17)
I guess you could say that Watto is, in a sense, responding to the abuse he copped from Kohli in the last over. Ashwin makes things easy for him by looping down a couple of long hops, but Watson certainly makes the most of the offerings and dispatches both for big sixes on the leg side. This is not what Dhoni was hoping for from his premier spinner. Time to bring Bhaaji on?
Over 4 - Aus 22/0 (Warner 16, Watson 5)
Warner has wrists like Christmas hams, and uses them to force a boundary through point off the back foot. Zaheer's riposte consists of an away swinger and then an inducker that spits off the pitch to strike the batsman in the belly. He ends the over with a huge lbw shout against Watson, who is saved only by an inside edge onto the pads. Kohli offers him some batting advice, and Umpire Dharmasena has got to step in and convince everyone to put their handbags away.
Over 3 - Aus 17/0 (Warner 11, Watson 5)
India are doing really well to keep control with a couple of tight overs. Warner is looking to get after Ashwin, but his variations - and a pause-and-deliver that I swear he learned from Ray Price - are enough to deny the big-hitting left-hander a boundary. Just eight runs have come from the last two overs, and the required rate has crept up above seven.
Over 2 - Aus 13/0 (Warner 8, Watson 4)
Watson is surprisingly circumspect against Zaheer Khan. I expected the Australian openers to get after him, but his first over is seen off for just four runs - and one of those a wide.
Over 1 - Aus 9/0 (Warner 8, Watson 1)
Warner's not the least bit worried about the short rainbreak, and re-boots his innings with a cultureless club down the ground from the first ball after the resumption. Ashwin still looks likely to get him sooner rather than later, drifting the ball in from round the wicket.
Over 0.3 - Aus 5/0 (Warner 4, Watson 1)
Dhoni opts to open the bowling with Ashwin, but he's a little too full and wide to Warner and is crunched through the covers for four. The drizzle then starts to come down, however, and the players are pulled off as the covers come on. It's not heavy, and this should be a short break.
'Absolutely fabulous comeback from Pakistan today!' adds Javed Mohammed. 'But let's not kid ourselves, they were very lucky.... Bringing Sehwag back will depend on the outcome of this match... I honestly don't think it would of made any difference though... Aussies got stuck in straight away...!' True, although if Viru had been playing at least we wouldn't have been treated to the indignity of watching Maxwell open the bowling. Do you reckon India will turn to their spinners early on?
End of innings
India's middle order stumbled against the pace of Cummins and Starc and Watto's wobblers, but the lower order rallied and they've reached what I suggested might be a par score earlier - 140. There was a big cloud of dust as the pitch was swept during the interval, and India's spinners will be vital to their defence. Warner and Watson will look to get after any pace offered to them early on, and Dhoni would do very well to get Bhaaji and Ashwin on early. Join us in a few minutes for the chase.
Over 20 - India 140/7 (Ashwin 16, Harbhajan 1)
Raina begins the final over, bowled by Watson, with a brace of boundaries into the leg side - one off a full toss, the other off a leg-stump half volley. He then targets the off side but can only get as far as Maxwell at long off, and Watson keeps Bhaaji and Ashwin to just singles from the remainder of the over
- 28th Sep 2012
- India won the toss and elected to bat.
- R. Premadasa Stadium
- H D P K Dharmasena and R A Kettleborough
australia BATTING CARD
|Watson||c sub Singh||72|
|Total||14.5 Overs||141 - 1|