Rohit Sharma looked in majestic touch as his 14th ton helped India beat Australia in the fifth ODI by seven wickets on Sunday. With this win, Virat Kohli and his men wrapped up the ODI series 4-1 to further showcase their dominance in world cricket.
However, it was not only about Rohit, his fellow opening partner Ajinkya Rahane also played an important role, providing a fine start to India, who were chasing 243 runs to win. After a splendid start from the openers, who combined for 124 runs, the task had been made easy.
Rohit took time to get his eye in and played a few dot balls early on. He looked better and fluent as the match progressed, dealing in boundaries. Kohli was just enjoying Rohit's batting from the other end as the Mumbai man, after getting a good feel of the playing surface, scored runs freely.
After the 'Hitman' of India cricket completed his ton in the 35th over with a wonderful six, Rohit and Kohli were eager to finish the game early. Rohit changed gears after completing his hundred, which also led to his downfall. He lost his wicket after scoring a splendid 109-ball 125, which comprised 11 fours and 5 sixes.
Kohli also feel soon after, which brought two new batsmen at the crease, Kedar Jadhav and Manish Pandey. The duo helped India cross the finishing line in the 43rd over.
What happened in the first innings?
David Warner and Aaron Finch started strongly mixing caution with aggression to prevent India's new-ball bowlers Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Jasprit Bumrah from doing damage in the first 10 overs. However, medium pacer Hardik Pandya struck when he removed Finch with a slower ball in 12th over.
Warner then stitched a 34-run stand for the second wicket with captain Steve Smith (16), before the latter was trapped in front by part-timer Kedar Jadhav, who once again did a good job for his captain (48 for 1 in 10 overs).
Warner then threw his wicket away after lofting one straight to the long-on fielder, gifting Axar his first wicket of the day. The left-handed opener was disappointed with himself as he missed an opportunity to lead from the front on what initially looked like a belter, but turned out to be a sluggish wicket.
Axar removed Peter Handscomb cheaply, but Travis Head (42) and Marcus Stoinis (46) led Australia out of trouble with an 87-run stand before the young Indian spinner cleaned up the former batsman.
Bhuvneshwar, Bumrah impress once again at the death
Bumrah, who was kept at bay in his first spell, came back to remove the dangerous Stoinis, who was looking set to switch gears in the end overs. The death-bowling expert struck in the penultimate over again to remove Matthew Wade, who made a handy contribution to the visitors (18-ball 20).
Australia lost two wickets -- James Faulkner and Nathan Coulter-Nile -- in the final over off which only five runs were taken. Bhuvneshwar made sure the visitors had no momentum going into the break by castling Coulter-Nile for 0 in the final ball of the innings.
Next up - T20I series
With India having played some brilliant cricket in the 50-overs contest, they will hope to take this form into the shortest format, and beat Australia once again. Three T20 matches are set to played, starting Saturday.