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IBNS: Riding on Virat Kohli (54) and KL Rahul’s (66) brave knocks infront of a mighty show by Australian bowlers, India posted 240 runs for the loss of all wickets in the final match of the World Cup at the showpiece Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad on Sunday.
Australia won the toss and opted to field first.
Rohit Sharma put up a strong show like he did in the semi-final clash against New Zealand and provided India a commanding start.
However, Australia soon pulled things in their favour by dismissing Shubman Gill (4) early.
Starc picked up Gill’s wicket to give India the first blow in the fifth over of the high-profile encounter. India’s scorecard read 1-30 at that point of the game.
Sharma continued his power hitting and hammered four boundaries and three sixes before Maxwell dismissed him in the 10th over. Head took a spectacular catch to ensure Sharma’s exit from the field and keep India struggling for runs from that point of the match.
Shreyas Iyer (4) soon followed Rohit Sharma as skipper Cummins scalped his wicket to leave the Indian ship tottering at 3-81.
Virat Kohli and KL Rahul joined to stitch a 67 runs fourth-wicket partnership which helped India recover after the sudden jolts it received.
However, Cummins did not let the match slip out of the Australian hands and bowled Kohli, the highest scorer in the ongoing edition of the 50-over World Cup, in the 29th match to keep India struggling all through the innings.
Kohli’s dismissal left the crowd in the world’s largest cricket stadium stunned and silenced.
KL Rahul played a heroic knock of 107-ball 66 runs that helped India cross the 200-run mark.
With Australian bowlers keeping things tight and picking up wickets at regular intervals, Indian batsmen hardly found the opportunity to deliver in the grand event.
Ravindra Jadeja (9), Suryakumar Yadav (18) failed to deliver as the bowlers kept putting pressure on the famed batting lineup which is hunting for their third World Cup victory.
Indian bowlers Mohammed Shami (6). Kuldeep Yadav (10) and Mohammed Siraj (9) made major contributions which helped India to post 240 on the scorecard.
Five-time champions Australia need 241 to win the match and add another 50-over World Cup title to their crown.