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Australia chase 300 again in the 2nd ODI

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India's finishing woes with the bat followed an erratic bowling and fielding display as the hosts chased a second consecutive 300-plus target at The Gabba on Friday to take a 2-0 lead in the five-match series.

Once looking good to cross 325 riding on Rohit Sharma's (124) second consecutive ODI hundred and Ajinkya Rahane's hard-hitting 89, India were stopped in their ranks at 308 for 8 by Australia's superb death-bowling show that saw the visitors scoring just 48 runs and losing five wickets in the last seven overs.

Ishant Sharma's drop of Shaun Marsh then signified India's butter-finger display in the field as the Aussie openers, Marsh and Aaron Finch, stitched a 145-run stand to lay a solid foundation, before George Bailey did the finishing job with his 76* off 58 balls.

Apart from Barinder Sran and Ravindra Jadeja, every Indian bowler went for six or more runs an over, with Umesh Yadav being the most expensive with 1 for 74 in 10 overs. Ishant, who replaced Bhuvneshwar Kumar in the eleven, bowled eight wides in his 0 for 60.

En route the victory, Australia completed the highest- ever run-chase in Brisbane, beating their own previous record of 301/9 achieved against England in January 2014.

Marsh and Finch started cautiously, but soon the run-rate improved as they started dominating the Indian bowlers, who were poor with their line and length. Finch started playing some fantastic shots half way through his innings. He got past his fifty and looked good for a ton but was dismissed by Ravindra Jadeja.

Shaun was the next man to fall off the bowling of Ishant. But Steven Smith and Bailey put on a 78-run stand for the third wicket to dash any hopes for the visitors. Yadav pciked up the former in the 41st but Aussies were never really under any pressure.

Bailey reached his 18th ODI fifty in the 44th over as he and Maxwell saw the team through without any fuss.

Earlier, after winning toss and opting to bat first, India got off to a bad start after losing out-of-form opener Shikhar Dhawan early in the innings. Dhawan got himself out while trying to hit a delivery that was outside off stump and only managed to give a simple catch to wicketkeeper Mathew Wade off the bowling of Joel Paris.

But from there onwards, just like the first ODI, Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli took on the bowlers and played some delightful shots in the partnership that was worth 125 runs. Just when it looked the duo can take the game away from the opposition and Kohli was looking set for a big innings, the Indian Test captain was run out against the flow of play for 59.

Kohli tried to sneak two runs in but a sharp throw to Wade by Kane Richardson caught a diving Kohli inches away from the crease to leave India at 134 for 2 in the 24th over.

Ajinkya Rahane joined Rohit in the middle and looked busy from the word go, allowing the Mumbai Indians' skipper to dominate the Australians in the middle but as the innings progressed, he started playing some brilliant shots. Meanwhile, Rohit got to his hundred as the duo were involved in the 121-run partnership for the third wicket as India crossed the 250-run mark.

Rohit smashed 11 boundaries and three sixes in his 127-ball knock. However, Rohit's innings came to an unfortunate end. Rahane drove back at bowler James Faulkner who managed to get a bit of his hand on it, to deflect the ball onto the stumps, which found Rohit backing up a bit too much. Rahane then took control in the middle but his 80-ball knock of 89 came to an end in the penultimate over.

India stuttered in the final few overs as the Australian pacers picked up four wickets in the last 10 deliveries. The likes of MS Dhoni (11), Manish Pandey (6) and R Ashwin (1) all fell cheaply.

India could score on 48 runs in their last seven overs, losing five wickets in the process. Credit to the inexperienced Australian bowling attack, they got their yorkers spot on to stop the Indians at 308 for 8, when at one point the hosts looked good to go past the 325-run mark.


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