Symonds smashes India
Australia seal series with 18-run success in Nagpur
By Graeme Mair. Last Updated: 14/10/07 3:13pm
Symonds: 107 from 88 balls
Andrew Symonds blasted a century as Australia secured an 18-run victory against India in a high-scoring sixth one-day international.
The result gives Australia an unassailable 4-1 lead in the series with just one match remaining. The opening game in Bangalore was washed out.
Symonds' unbeaten 107 allowed the tourists to pile up 317-8 after batting first on a hard and flat wicket in Nagpur.
An opening stand of 140 between Sourav Ganguly and Sachin Tendulkar gave India a solid start to their daunting run chase.
But Tendulkar was stumped off the bowling of James Hopes for a run-a-ball 72 in the 25th over, and the introduction of left-arm wrist spinner Brad Hogg then destroyed the middle-order.
Hogg removed Ganguly (86), Irfan Pathan (29), Yuvraj Singh (6) and Rahul Dravid (7) to finish with figures of 4-49 from his 10-over allocation.
Dravid's dismissal brought together Mahendra Singh Dhoni and Robin Uthappa with the score at 218-5 in the 41st over.
The sixth-wicket pair shared a 72-run partnership in 7.4 overs to give their side a glimmer of hope.
However, that was extinguished by Mitchell Johnson (2-39), who removed both during a double-wicket maiden in the penultimate over, and India went on to finish well short at 299-7.
With Matthew Hayden sidelined by a hip injury, Michael Clarke was promoted to open the innings alongside Adam Gilchrist after Ricky Ponting won the toss and opted to bat first.
It was not a success as Clarke was caught behind for a golden duck from the third delivery of Zaheer Khan's opening over.
Gilchrist (51) shared a 96-run stand with Ponting (49) for the second wicket to build a platform for Symonds.
The Queensland all-rounder came to the crease with the score at 102-3 in the 16th over and proceeded to hit nine fours and four sixes, gradually accelerating his scoring as the innings progressed.
He was well supported by Brad Haddin (25) and Hopes (39) during partnerships of 75 and 90 for the fifth and sixth wickets respectively.
Symonds reached his century from 82 balls and finished unbeaten on 107, the sixth three-figure score of his one-day international career.
The final instalment of the seven-match series takes place on Wednesday in Mumbai, coverage starts on Sky Sports 2 at 10am (BST).